Buy or Borrow: Buy
Source: Copy courtesy of Bookbridgr
You know when you're in a car accident and you die and then your baby sister brings you back to life with her freaky but kind of awesome gift? No? Well Ember does, and ever since baby sis Olivia brought her back she's operated on a strict no touchy rule to avoid the awkward moment when she kills someone just by touching them.
Yep that's right, worlds suckiest "gift" award right here. Everything Ember touches dies, plants, animals....people. Facing a life of never being able to touch anyone ever again, including boys, things are looking pretty bleak for Ember, who also pretty much parents Olivia since their mum went spacey after the accident that killed Ember's father and her....temporarily. But then Hayden Cromwell shows up, if the slightly stalkery tendencies didn't make Ember think he'd gone off the deep end, the whole "your curse is a gift" thing definitely did.
But then Hayden offers to help her learn to control it. But in order to do so, Ember will have to trust Hayden's adopted father who collects gifted kids like a fanboy collects Lord of The Rings action figures. Oh and live in a house with a couple of other gifted kids who really do not want her there, or trust her. And they're quite vocal about their opinions. When Ember finds out the car accident wasn't really an accident, she has no idea who to trust, especially with someone leaving little "presents" in her locker, and someone else trying to kill her.
"No one that good-looking had a reason to be that creepy."
I hope y'all enjoy that funny little quote, cos it's all I've got, I meant to pick some others but, well....I got too engrossed in the book. Jennifer is seriously ruining my life with all her awesome books, with all the awesomely perfect/adorable guys, raising my expectations to a ridiculous standard!
I'm sure you've guessed that I'm a huge fan of Jennifer, my review of White Hot Kiss is floating around this blog somewhere, and I've got another on my review pile, I'm literally in heaven. Jennifer's books are always perfect and always pick you right up if it's one of those days.
Right from the start of the book, I was hooked from the first page, sucked straight in to the world created and unable to put the book down. I told myself multiple times that I'd get an early night after many days reading too late, but that really didn't happen, I just.....I couldn't put it down, I kept saying "one more chapter" but then something would happen and I'd HAVE to read the next one!
Cursed is so engaging, and fast paced you whip through it, the flow was perfect. You spend the whole book intrigued and trying to work out who's behind everything, and then being wrong, or being all "I KNEW IT" but then being totally stumped by the motivation until all is revealed. Literally, I would set aside time to read this one in one go because you will not be able to find a suitable place to leave it, and even if you do, you will spend the entire time thinking about it. I promise you!
I connected with Ember from the offset. Seeing what she went through at her school, and how lonely and isolated from everyone she was, really makes you empathize with her, and the talks she has with her mother kinda make you choke up a little bit, not to mention how she's pretty much a mother to her sister. Ember is such a strong character, carrying on with life after everything that happened, and looking after her sister, even though she was facing a life of no college and no boyfriends or anything.
I loved Ember, she had some great lines that made me chuckle, but I truly admired her strength and her will. Jennifer writes her characters so well and with such depth that you connect to them yeah, but you also connect to them emotionally. You feel whatever Ember feels and more than once I kinda wanted to punch certain characters in the face, particularly when Ember is at the Cromwell house. It's a bit of a rollercoaster sometimes. It's kind of impossible to to become emotionally attached to her protags.
The other characters are kind of hard for me to describe, because you form your opinion of them based off Ember, or at least I did, like Ember I didn't particularly trust any of them or know who to trust. I have to say though, all of the other kids with gifts/the secondary characters, where written with just as much depth as Ember, and they all have clearly intriguing backgrounds that I would loooove to know more about! I'm particularly curious about poor Parker, besides our two leads, I really felt for him as well!
Hayden was adorable, even though I started off thinking he was a creepy stalker. At a certain point in the book near the end, I genuinely was following Embers thought process and was like "OH MY GOD NO WAY YOU CREEPY CREEPY HUMAN WHAAAAATTT" and then I was like...oh. My bad. Never mind. I felt so bad for him, and I loved how he was determined to help and wasn't afraid to touch her and actually spoke to her. He had a bit of a "you're a dick" period that he got over, but most of the time he was really cute, and I mean.....the way he handled her scars? Perfect boy.
Ember and Hayden's relationship was just.....sickeningly cute. Warm and fuzzies....check....internally squealing...check....kinda jealous....double check. Their relationship was kind of rocky, with secrets and everything, but I liked how Hayden wanted to protect her, but didn't smother her and listened to her....well except for one occasion but still.
The plot, as I said, was totally engaging, you had the perfect blend of romance, mystery and action. I personally didn't work out who was behind the locker thing, I thought it was someone else. But I did work out who was "the big bad" purely because I was incredibly focused on the book and I picked up on some clues, however, I wasn't smart enough to put the pieces together regarding "j" and the motivation of said big bad so it was a nice surprise and everything clicked and I was like "oooohhh". So yeah, it's not predictable, but its workout-able if you pay attention, but there where plenty of twists I didn't see coming.
Cursed is a fantastic, engaging and unique book, perfect for making you laugh, or just giving you the warm and fuzzies on a bad day. Yes I know...death....touch of death...warm fuzzies shouldn't be possible, but the sad parts are outweighed.
Cursed features a protagonist that you get so attached to you want to punch fictional characters in the face, with characters that truly jump off the page, and a plot line full of intrigue, mystery, and shocking plot twists.
I didn't want to leave the characters or the world, and I'm not sure if there will be a sequel to Cursed, but I kind of hope there is because I would love more of Ember. Everything was wrapped up at the end, don't get me wrong, but I'd love to see where Ember goes with regards to controlling her power, and I'd really like to learn more about the other characters and their stories! Please Jennifer....can I have some more?! *puppy eyes*