Monday, October 29, 2012

Review: The Forsaken by Lisa M. Stasse

Book Description via Goodreads:

Paperback, 432 pages
August 2, 2012, Orchard Books

As an obedient orphan of the U.N.A. (the super-country that was once Mexico, the U.S., and Canada), Alenna learned at an early age to blend in and be quiet—having your parents taken by the police will do that to a girl. But Alenna can’t help but stand out when she fails a test that all sixteen-year-olds have to take: The test says she has a high capacity for brutal violence, and so she is sent to The Wheel, an island where all would-be criminals end up.

The life expectancy of prisoners on The Wheel is just two years, but with dirty, violent, and chaotic conditions, the time seems a lot longer as Alenna is forced to deal with civil wars for land ownership and machines that snatch kids out of their makeshift homes. Desperate, she and the other prisoners concoct a potentially fatal plan to flee the island. Survival may seem impossible, but Alenna is determined to achieve it anyway.

Source: Vicky + Orchard Books (Thank you!)

My Thoughts:

Island Alpha, also known as the Wheel to its inhabitants, was divided into sectors. There were two groups: the Drones led by the Monk and the villagers. The drones wore robes and scary masks. They were loud, violent and determined to please the Monk. On the other hand, the villagers were as peaceful as they could be but they also fought back whenever the drones attacked. They were the normal ones. The on-going conflict between the drones and the villagers was bad. The villagers were losing their lives and their space. With their numbers dwindling, they needed to find a solution and possibly, a way to escape the Wheel. Their journey to the Gray sector aka the abandoned sector was very dangerous. Alenna and the other hunters needed to be careful not only with the forces of nature but also with their companions, the drones. Could they reach their destination and find the answers to their questions before something deadly happens?

Alenna was a character straight out of a tragedy. First, her parents were ripped out of her life. Second, she failed her GGPT test – the test that determines whether she was okay to stay in UNA or she was destined to be a criminal and then sent to Island Alpha. Alenna was a relatable. She seemed real to me. She doubted and questioned the things around her but she also had an open mind. She was flawed but she struggled to make herself better. Although she might be weak in the eyes of the villagers of the Wheel, eventually her inner Katniss broke through to the surface. She adapted and she survived. She became one of the hunters of her village.

From the beginning Alenna was attracted to Liam. Despite her friend’s warning, she fell for him. I couldn’t blame her though. Liam was badass, charming and handsome. He also exuded confidence. I enjoyed reading about their first encounters but I wish that there had been more time for them. At the end, I would say that the two have become even closer because of all the trials and danger that they went through together.

I had high expectations for The Forsaken. It lived up to my expectations but not fully. There was action, a lot of suspense and a little bit of romance. But what I liked the most was the ways of the inhabitants of the Wheel – how they lived and survived – and the unpredictability of the story. I was intrigued throughout the novel. There were a lot of questions to be answered and I trudged along with the characters as they searched for the answers. It was mysterious and even creepy to some extent. There were times when I sat at the edge of my seat but there were also times when I felt that the action plummeted and the story dragged. But don’t let that discourage you from reading The Forsaken because it is worth reading.

Take Survivor, add a cup of Struck (by Jennifer Bosworth) and a dose of mad science, you’ll get The Forsaken. This is the perfect read if you’re looking for thrill and unpredictability. I recommend this to readers of dystopian and post-apocalyptic!


4 Cupids = Strong book love. 
I really enjoyed this. I recommend this!


  1. Great review! I've been wanting to read this book for a while now, and based on your review it sounds like it packs quite a punch!

    - Ellie @ The Selkie Reads Stories

  2. I'm a sucker when it comes to dystopian and post-apocalyptic. Thanks for the awesome review Precious. I'l hunt this book down on our local bookstores. :D


  3. Lovely review! I'm excited for this book, because I love the promise. Alenna sounds like a great character :)