Rating: 5 stars Four girls. One dead
body. A whole lot of guilt.
Alice King isn’t
expecting the holiday of a lifetime when she sets off with her classmates on a
trip to the Scottish wilderness, but she’s not exactly prepared for an
experience beyond her darkest nightmares…
Alice and her best
friend Cass are stuck in a cabin with Polly, the social outcast, and Rae, the
moody emo-girl. Then there’s Tara – queen of mean. Powerful, beautiful and
cruel, she likes nothing better than putting people down.
Cass decides it’s time
to teach Tara a lesson she’ll never forget.
And so begins a series of events that will change the lives of these girls
Torn revolves around four girls who must deal with the
horror and guilt of another girl’s death.
After an ‘accident’ on a school trip, Tara – a selfish and horrible girl
– dies, leaving everyone shocked and confused.
But was it really an accident? Or
is there a hidden secret? Alice, Cass,
Polly and Rae have opposed views on what they should do next: Alice and Rae
want to reveal the truth; Cass and Polly think they should keep their mouths
shut. As friendships break and new
relationships form, the girls all deal with the situation in their own way,
making Torn a very compelling read indeed.
The story opens at Tara’s
funeral, setting the mood for the rest of the book. I enjoyed the places where ‘Ghost Tara’ was
incorporated: it helped me realise that despite her horrid personality, her
death was unjustifiable and allowed me to feel pity for her. I liked how the ‘secret’ isn’t revealed
straight away and the flashback worked really well, allowing the reader to get
to know the characters. At times in the
beginning, I wanted to say ‘Hurry up and tell me what exactly happened!’ Cat Clarke kept me at the edge of my seat as
I desperately tried to find out the truth.
Initially, I thought the start was awfully slow-paced but I soon came to
realise that it was a very clever way to keep me turning the pages!
As the book is told from Alice’s point of view, I found it really easy
to warm to her. I switched between feeling sorry for her and wanting to shout
at her. I could feel her innocence and
her desperation to put things right and I knew that deep down she wasn’t a bad
person. However, when she develops her
relationship with Tara’s younger brother Jack,
I was incredulous. I felt like shaking
her to her senses. If Jack discovered
what happened, his heart would be shattered.
Ironically, it was Jack who made her see sense.
As for the other girls, it was hard to get to know them as
well. It was horrible to see the
friendship break between Alice and Cass as they seemed very close before
everything happened and they could have done with each other’s support. It was difficult to empathise with Rae, the
dark emo-girl, but once the events unfold, it becomes clear that she felt just
as guilty as the others, if not worse.
The character who I felt great loathing for was Polly. Initially, she appears to be a meek, innocent
girl who is eager to please but by the end, she grew into a deceiving,
manipulative cow. She had me completely
Torn is a very compelling read with an interesting
plot. It kept me turning the pages and
gripped me from page one. It is truly a
wonderful book full of lies, love and friendships. It deserves 5 stars, no doubt! I can’t wait to read more of Cat Clarke’s
Thanks to Charlotte at Red House for sending me a copy of this fantastic book!