Published Date: November 7th, 2011
Finished Date: January 6th, 2012
Source: For Review from Author
The Blurb from Goodreads: Seventeen-year-old Nalena Maxwell, known as The Waste at her school, has received a sign to join an ancient community. She’d know that, if it wasn’t the wrong dang sign. But Garrett Reese, one of the school’s most popular athletes and a boy with eyes as clean as Jesus, knows exactly what Nalena is and he knows about all the family skeletons that are about to come crashing into her life…
The Review: Nalena Maxwell is a regular 17yr old high school student, apart from the fact that she has been made into a social outcast and re named ‘The Waste’ by her peers because of her Mothers’ obsession with hoarding paper – apparently she’s doing it for mankind! Constantly bullied because of it Nalena just wants to get through her time there and spends her free time running or in the library (when she’s not picking up reams of paper for her mother that is). All she has is her mother, no one else. Until one day, at the library, a boy approaches her and tries to befriend her. Unfortunately he is the boyfriend of her arch nemesis and the girl responsible for the whole school re naming her ‘The Waste’. By meeting this boy, Garrett Reese - she sets off a chain of events that will change Nalenas’ life forever, uncovering secrets and lies that should have stayed hidden & forcing Nalena to make a life changing decision.
What can I say about this book?
Well, it was totally unexpected for one!
The only hint I had of this book was the synopsis on Goodreads, that was all. I didn’t have an opinion about it but thought ‘I’ll give it a go’. . . let me tell you – this book is seriously good, not quite a 5* for me but very close. I really don’t want to spoil any of it so bear with me while I try to get my view across.
At first I thought the book was going to focus on how much of an impact Nalenas’ mothers’ hoarding had on her life & while we get that, it isn’t the focus of the book at all. Its subject is quite unique & I’ve never read anything of its kind before. I mean yes, you get the messed up family life, high school drama, bitches from hell, boy troubles etc. but team that with the uniqueness of the people, who they are and what they do makes a really good book.
Nalena is a great character, she starts of as some meek social pariah trying to get through her daily life dealing with her mothers’ obsession, the way they live and being bullied because of it. She is someone who would rather avoid than confront, then she starts to blossom into someone a little stronger, a little more determined and would do anything to protect her mother. She grows quite a bit throughout the book but you’re still left wanting more from her and happy in the fact that you’re going to get exactly that in the sequel. She has so much potential, even more so after what she has gone through that promises much more to come for her and while the other characters are just as good, Nalena steals the show.
I usually tend to be a bit hard on first book in a series, they’re a bit slow because of the whole ‘getting to know you’ process but this has really impressed me, the author kept the pace and held my interest very well. For the first half of the book it was all ‘OOO what’s going on’, not in a confused way but in a curious way and when I found out – I wanted to know more, I was compelled to keep reading and loving every minute of it. This is just the beginning of what has the potential to be a great series and I really do look forward to more.
So. . . . I want you to go and buy it, don’t spoil it for yourselves – go in blind – take a good couple of hours to really get into it and then when you’re finished, come back and comment, let me know what you think of it. . . . because I’m dying to know.
4.5 out of 5!