Wednesday, March 17, 2010
"Ruined" by Paula Morris
Rebecca, newly transplanted to New Orleans to live with an aunt, feels like a fish out of water. Battling homesickness for New York City and her traveling father, Rebecca must also deal with the cliques in her new school, which seem to be focused entirely on the importance of local family history, social class, and the upcoming Mardi Gras season of parties and parades. Although at first content to be an outsider, Rebecca's interest and involvement with the popular group is intensified after she becomes friends with a mysterious girl who seems to be living in the cemetary. Rebecca becomes intent to solve the mystery of her new friend and the 150-year-old curse associated with a local mansion.
Reading "Ruined" is the next best thing to an actual visit to the city of New Orleans. Morris skillfully describes the neighborhoods, streets, and cemetaries of the city and makes them part of the action and atmosphere. One can easily imagine the frenzy and excitement of attending one of the Mardi Gras parades while reading of it in this book. The mystery that embroils Rebecca snakes its way through the city, its parties, and its inhabitants, wrapping itself ever tighter around our heroine.
Although some of the action seems at times to be a little too outlandish to be believable, the nifty plot twists keep one reading. I'd recommend this book to anyone who likes a good mystery involving history, ghosts, and curses! Rated FOUR and a HALF out of FIVE stars.