Monday, 9 May 2011

Book Review - Rage by Jackie Morse Kessler

Rage by Jackie Morse Kessler
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: 4th April 2011 (according to UK Amazon) 

Summary (Goodreads):

Missy didn’t mean to cut so deep. But after the party where she was humiliated in front of practically everyone in school, who could blame her for wanting some comfort? Sure, most people don’t find comfort in the touch of a razor blade, but Missy always was . . . different.

That’s why she was chosen to become one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: War. Now Missy wields a new kind of blade—a big, brutal sword that can cut down anyone and anything in her path. But it’s with this weapon in her hand that Missy learns something that could help her triumph over her own pain: control.

A unique approach to the topic of self-mutilation, Rage is the story of a young woman who discovers her own power and refuses to be defeated by the world.

  After I read Hunger by this author, I ordered Rage within minutes and read it as soon as I took it out of the packaging. If I thought Hunger delivered a punch, it was nothing compared to the punch I received off Rage. The story is intense, powerful and raw, whilst still keeping the black humour from the previous book.

 Missy is a self-harmer and like Lisa, from the previous book, has Death appear on her doorstep at a time when her death is close to hand by offering her to be War, the Red Rider of the Four Horsemen. From the first meeting, you know the relationship between Missy and Death will be different than the one Lisa had with him.

 When we follow Missy in her miserable existence, you feel everything she’s feeling. The descriptions were strong enough to make the reader live Missy’s life as she went through the humiliation brought on her in front of all her school peers. You feel like your living in the house where she argues with her sister and hides everything from her parents. Powerful.

 Then you have Death, looking like a familiar rock star that isn’t with us anymore, keeping a serious matter light with his humour. Just when you think you can’t handle Missy’s misery and want to put the book down for relief, there is Death to help guide her a little more, so you keep reading. War is Death’s handmaiden, so he has a vested interest in seeing Missy through her trials.

 I’m not doing this book justice. I really do urge you all to read it. The writing is strong and amazing. The characters are rounded and flawed, just like real people. The plot is spot on. It opens your eyes to a serious subject and makes you think about how hard your own life really is. Go. Read it.

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