Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Review: Choker, by Elizabeth Woods

Elizabeth Woods
Hardcover, 240 pages
Simon & Schuster
January 4, 2011
isbn: 144241233X
isbn13: 9781442412330

Sixteen-year-old Cara Lange has been a loner ever since she moved away from her best and only friend, Zoe, years ago. She eats lunch with the other girls from the track team, but they're not really her friends. Mostly she spends her time watching Ethan Gray from a distance, wishing he would finally notice her, and avoiding the popular girls who call her "Choker" after a humiliating incident in the cafeteria.

Then one day Cara comes home to find Zoe waiting for her. Zoe's on the run from problems at home, and Cara agrees to help her hide. With her best friend back, Cara's life changes overnight. Zoe gives her a new look and new confidence, and next thing she knows, she's getting invited to parties and flirting with Ethan. Best of all, she has her BFF there to confide in.

But just as quickly as Cara's life came together, it starts to unravel. A girl goes missing in her town, and everyone is a suspect—including Ethan. Worse still, Zoe starts behaving strangely, and Cara begins to wonder what exactly her friend does all day when she's at school. You're supposed to trust your best friend no matter what, but what if she turns into a total stranger?

I have been on the fence about posting this review for the past few days because it's not going to be one of the best reviews that I have posted for a book. However, I feel that it's necessary to be completely honest about a review, so I'm posting it.

I'll get the bad out of the way first. In retrospect, I think that I would have enjoyed this novel a little more if I wouldn't have guessed the plot within the first 75 pages of reading. Sometimes, when I do that, everything that leads up to the "big reveal" seems oh so very obvious. I also felt as though Cara was channeling her inner Bella Swan with her constantly convenient clumsiness. By that I mean she was too clumsy, but only when it seemed convenient in the story for her to be clumsy.

With that being said, let's move onto the things that I did like. The cover is absolutely stunning and I am in love with it. And looking past the obviousness for me, there were some very good plot twists and more darkness to the novel than I thought there would be. Zoe was a crazy character and I found myself spooked by her on more than one occasion. Clumsiness aside, I was also very sympathetic of Cara - even up to the bitter end. However, my absolute favorite character by far was Ethan ... and that boy went through entirely too much in this novel!

Elizabeth Woods is an amazing writer and I cannot give enough praise for how well-written and detailed this book is. She does an incredible job at fleshing out all of her characters, down to Cara's mom's cat - who I found to be a lot like my own spoiled fat cat. Like I said, I enjoyed this read ... I just guessed the plot too soon and it kind of spoiled it for me. This, however, is no cut toward the author - who's work I will follow because she's such a talented writer.

Source: Publisher

Avg Rating: 3.5


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the honesty Missy! :) This one sounds really interesting.

brandileigh2003 said...

I have heard others say they guessed the ending, but it completely shocked me!
Thanks for the honest review. they are really hard to do well, and you did.
Brandi from Blkosiner’s Book Blog

Melissa (i swim for oceans) said...

Gahhhh there are so many bella swan wanna be's on the market today, eh? I love the premise of this, but I fear that the MC would drive me nuts. Great honest review, Missy :)

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

You liked this one better than I did. It was a dnf for me. I agree it was predictable and I also had problems with the psychology of the book. You wrote a great honest review! Definite props for finishing it from me! :)

Missie, The Unread Reader said...

LOL! Conveniently clumsiness?! Oooh, No Bueno.

Yeah, I'm kind of leery about this one, esp since Melissa (up above) told me that it was a DNF for her. But now I'm all curious about Ethan. hmmm..

Thanks for posting your review, Missy. I'm glad to know your thoughts on this one.

basma aal said...

Thanks for the honest review. but honestly I didnt like the book.

Liddy said...

This one sounds really interesting!
Thank you for the great review!
I think that the cover on this one is really really pretty.
I love the shade of pink they have used against the black and white. :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your honesty! I think I will check it out because Zoe being spooky is intriguing and I am never good at guessing endings, even obvious ones. :)

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