I originally thought this book was called The Project. This is because I can’t read.
So if you google for it (as you will)…remember: PROTECTED. Don’t be the illiterate pineapple like me.
Thank you UPQ Books for the review-copy! The Protected by Claire Zorn hit shelves in July, 2014.
I have three months left to call Katie my older sister. Then the gap will close and I will pass her. I will get older. But Katie will always be fifteen, eleven months and twenty-one days old.
Hannah’s world is in pieces and she doesn’t need the school counsellor to tell her she has deep-seated psychological issues. With a seriously depressed mum, an injured dad and a dead sister, who wouldn’t have problems?
Hannah should feel terrible but for the first time in ages, she feels a glimmer of hope and isn’t afraid anymore. Is it because the elusive Josh is taking an interest in her? Or does it run deeper than that?
In a family torn apart by grief and guilt, one girl’s struggle to come to terms with years of torment shows just how long old wounds can take to heal.
Do you have tissues? Invest. GET yourself some tissues.
I’m not a crier! Ask anyway! Ask my family! I actually tend to giggle when I get emotional (especially during movies) because that’s how I release tension. I was pretty annoying to sit with while watching Catching Fire, okay? But while I read The Protected, I genuinely nearly bawled. My eyes leaked.
It’s a story about grief and bullying.
Totally the most crushing combination ever. It reminded me a lot of The Year of the Rat (sans bullying) for style and brittle family anguish. This book is about Hannah who is horribly bullied and her sister is dead from a car accident.
The story itself works backwards. You begin knowing her sister, Katie, is dead. That hurts. You see the pain, the tears, the family falling apart. BUT WHY?! WHAT HAPPENED? Answers beg to be found. I basically just read the whole thing in two sittings and I just absolutley ached for Hannah.
Hannah is a really soft person. Quiet and nice.
And people are so mean to her. Oh gosh. I was so angry. I was so FURIOUS. She’s so soft and vulnerable and therefore an instant target. I absolutely ached for her. And all her highschool peers?
They needed a hi-five in the face with a chair.
Oh, except for Josh.
Hannah meets Josh after the accident. She has zero friends, she’s absolutely messed up, and it’s all she can do to keep breathing (because there’s a reason as well as just plain grief…something happened that I CANNOT TELL YOU ABOUT concerning the accident. It’ll break your heart. Again). I loved Josh and Hannah’s friendship. There are so many reasons it was awesome, like, a) the emphasis was on them being friends which is what Hannah needed, and b) Josh was a real caring softie, but the class clown, but kind of an idiot, and c) Josh talked a lot. And by “a lot” I mean he didn’t shut up. It’s awesome to read about a talkative guy for once while the girl says very little.
It’s really very Australian too, which is refreshing.
Don’t get me wrong, I luuurve you Americans. But the bulk of YA I read is American and while it’s fabulous, it’s nice to have a book set in my own country. Hold that. In my own STATE. It’s in the Blue Mountains! Which I’ve…never ever seen, but whatever.
Besides the Australian humour and dialogue was brilliant. Absolutely spot-on brilliant. I even smiled a bit. Come now! This is a book about a devastating death of a sister…and yet there were still moments of complete sarcasm that made me smile.
The only thing that made me uncomfortable was Katie and Hannah’s relationship.
It’s hard to explain without spoilers. But let’s just say Katie isn’t the nice older sister who’d protect and love her little sister Hannah like she should. As you might know, I have a sister. I like her a lot. So it kind of made me sick the things that went down between these two sisters.
Basically the whole book is freakishly fantastically written.
You want to know why? Because I felt while I was reading it. I was sad and smiled and burned angry and then cried a bit. If an author can evoke emotion while writing a book, they’re absolutely fantastically talented. Especially if it’s me, because we all know I’m a bit Vulcan.
This is totally like a 4.5-star rating. I felt absolutely engaged in the story and I just wanted to rescue Hannah from her cruel school and then sticky-tape her life back together with a coating of fabulousness. Perhaps give her a cupcake. This book is amazing.
Cait is rarely emotionally sniffly in books. But then, she’s rarely sniffly about anything except a) the library not having a specific book she wants or b) someone eating all the guacamole. Those two are tear-worthy circumstances. Currently, she’s reading THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS (“gifts” not “gifs” unfortunately) and is having trouble not hyperventilating because it’s seriously good.