Thursday, 30 August 2012

Review: Desert Rice by Angela Scott - Megan

Synopsis from Goodreads
Samantha Jean Haggert is a beautiful twelve-year-old girl—but no one knows it. All they see is an awkward boy in a baseball cap and baggy pants. Sam’s not thrilled with the idea of hiding her identity, but it’s all part of her older brother’s plan to keep Sam safe from male attention and hidden from the law. Fifteen-year-old Jacob will stop at nothing to protect his sister, including concealing the death of the one person who should have protected them in the first place—their mother.

Sam and Jacob try to outrun their past by stealing the family car and traveling from West Virginia to Arizona, but the adult world proves mighty difficult to navigate, especially for two kids on their own. Trusting adults has never been an option; no adult has ever given them a good reason. But when Sam meets “Jesus”—who smells an awful lot like a horse—in the park, life takes a different turn. He saved her once, and may be willing to save Sam and her brother again, if only they admit what took place that fateful day in West Virginia. The problem? Sam doesn’t remember, and Jacob isn’t talking.

*An ebook copy was provided by the author for review purposes*

Desert Rice is intense, chilling and emotionally captivating. With an estranged father and a recently deceased mother, Sam and Jacob are thrown head-first into a world they haven't learnt to trust yet. Struggling to make ends meet, their attempts at survival and escaping the seclusion of foster homes crafts this novel into a journey that is guaranteed to break your heart.

Angela Scott does well to keep us in the dark about these two characters. Bits and pieces are tossed into the mix to give us an understanding of what is going on but I'd advise you to have a box of tissues at the ready for when the truth is revealed. The pace at the beginning of the novel seems to be rather slow because of the lack of information we're given but the consistent twists and turns will keep you on your toes.

Jacob is exactly the type of big brother that every girl needs. His undeniable love for Sam is heartwarming although his overprotective nature towards her is slightly erratic. He made various decisions that left me in a state of confusion but I understood they were based purely on love. Honestly, I was surprised by his maturity and determination especially during the more intense moments of the book. You almost forget that he's only 15 years old which is why I appreciated the scenes where you get to witness Jacob's vulnerability. 

Sam's distraught about having to dress like a boy was understandable. The pressure placed upon her shoulders is almost unbearable to fathom at times because her innocence just makes you want to curl up into a ball and cry. Experiencing these events through Samantha's eyes pulled on my heartstrings and watching her grow and come to terms with the reality of her situation was wonderful.

Angela Scott has a beautiful writing style that was easy to follow and possessed the power to pull emotions from me. She brought her characters to life and delivered a thought provoking novel that deals with serious themes in a professional manner. I strongly recommend this book to everyone who hasn't yet read it and I can't wait to see where the plot continues in the next instalment, Desert Flower.

Author Bio
Blog |@whimsywriting | Facebook

I hear voices. Tiny fictional people sit on my shoulders and whisper their stories in my ear. Instead of medicating myself, I decided to pick up a pen, write down everything those voices tell me, and turn it into a book. I’m not crazy. I’m an author. For the most part, I write contemporary Young Adult novels. However, through a writing exercise that spiraled out of control, I found myself writing about zombies terrorizing the Wild Wild West—and loving it. My zombies don’t sparkle, and they definitely don’t cuddle. At least, I wouldn’t suggest it. 

I live on the benches of the beautiful Wasatch Mountains with two lovely children, one teenager, and a very patient husband. I graduated from Utah State University with a B.A. degree in English, not because of my love for the written word, but because it was the only major that didn’t require math. I can’t spell, and grammar is my arch nemesis. But they gave me the degree, and there are no take backs. As a child, I never sucked on a pacifier; I chewed on a pencil. I’ve been writing that long. It has only been the past few years that I’ve pursued it professionally, forged relationships with other like-minded individuals, and determined to make a career out of it.

You can find me at my website, where I blog obsessively about my writing process and post updates on my current works. I’m also on Twitter and Facebook, but be forewarned, I tweet and post more than a normal person.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I am a member of Reading Addiction Blog Tours and a copy of this book was provided to me by the author. Although payment may have been received by Reading Addiction Blog Tours, no payment was received by me in exchange for this review. There was no obligation to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own and may not necessarily agree with those of the author, publisher, publicist, or readers of this review. This disclosure is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255, Guides Concerning Use of Endorcements and Testimonials in Advertising*

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