Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Book Review: Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

Published May 27th 2010 by Definitions
Paperback, 432 pages
She is pretty and talented - sweet sixteen and never been kissed. He is seventeen; gorgeous and on the brink of a bright future. And now they have fallen in love. But... they are brother and sister.
Seventeen-year-old Lochan and sixteen-year-old Maya have always felt more like friends than siblings. Together they have stepped in for their alcoholic, wayward mother to take care of their three younger siblings. As defacto parents to the little ones, Lochan and Maya have had to grow up fast. And the stress of their lives—and the way they understand each other so completely—has also also brought them closer than two siblings would ordinarily be. So close, in fact, that they have fallen in love. Their clandestine romance quickly blooms into deep, desperate love. They know their relationship is wrong and cannot possibly continue. And yet, they cannot stop what feels so incredibly right. As the novel careens toward an explosive and shocking finale, only one thing is certain: a love this devastating has no happy ending.
My Thoughts:
Well, that was…interesting to say the least and awkward in so many ways. How many of you have ever thought, “Damn, they are fineeee” about a family member? * Tumbleweed * Yup, I didn’t think there’d be anyone. Incest isn’t a topic to take lightly, in fact, its illegal in most countries. In Forbidden the author hasn’t tried to gloss over the topic and make it seem like a wonderful love story. It’s far from wonderful and is pretty much doomed from the offset.

 At times I found myself inwardly cringing when things got a bit too graphic for my liking. I tried to stay open minded rather than judging the characters and the choices they made. But having an older brother myself made it hard to understand how anyone could fall for his or her siblings or even be slightly attracted to them. In most people’s minds and mine it just isn’t right. Okay, so maybe Lochan and Maya weren’t physically or even emotionally hurting anyone with their relationship but in the end it did have its consequences. These lead to a heartbreaking conclusion that not even I saw coming.

 This book is told from alternate perspectives switching between Maya and Lochan. As we got to know these characters I did find myself sympathising with them as they were in a pretty dire situation. No child should have to go through the crap that these two and their younger siblings had to experience. With a father that abandoned them at a young age they’ve had to rely on their alcoholic mother. Not much use doing that though as by halfway through the book she might as well be non-existent too. I liked the characterswith the exception of mum, she was shitbut I didn’t connect with them. I felt that a lot of the time they made a mountain out of a mole hole especially when there wasn’t anything to worry about. How Lochan handled his relationship with Maya was slightly annoying, he thought that it was sick, he saw the wrongs in it and yet he still went ahead with it and risked everything.

 I had a love hate relationship with the writing in this book. It was up and down. One minute I’d be enjoying it and then the next I could barely scrape through a paragraph. The author is a bit too descriptive for my liking, be warned, she goes into detail about EVERYTHING. You can imagine my horror when the relationship started getting incestual and the author was writing evocative “sex” scenes. The author of this book is British and the book is set in London. So what I don’t get is why she was writing things like “4 blocks away” We don’t say stuff like that in England. Well I don’t know anyone who does anyway…

 If you’re thinking of picking up this book I’d like to point out that although its classed as young adult fiction it does contain a lot of mature content. Do try to be open-minded while reading, as it can get a little bit heavy at times. However, you shouldn’t let my warnings put you off, as it is a good read though it might not be for everyone (I don’t think incest is for most people but you know what I mean!)

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