Thursday, January 24, 2013

Burned by Sara Shepard

(Pretty Little Liars series, book 12)
It’s spring break, and the pretty little liars are trading in Rosewood for a cruise vacation. They want nothing more than to sail into the tropical sunset and leave their troubles behind for one blissful week. But where Emily, Aria, Spencer, and Hanna go, A goes, too. From scuba diving to tanning on the upper deck, A is there, soaking up all their new secrets.

Emily is smooching a stowaway. Aria’s treasure-hunting partner is a little too interested in her booty. Spencer’s going overboard trying to land a new boy. And a blast – or rather, a crash – from Hanna’s past could mean rough waters ahead for everyone.

The liars better tighten their life jackets. A perfect storm is brewing, and if they aren't careful, A will bury them at sea…

First of all, I went into this book thinking it was the end of the series; it would be the last book, the story would be over, all the answers would finally be revealed. Nope. I was pissed when I got the end and found out that there is not only one more book being written, but two more books! What?!? I want to be done with this series! It should have stopped after book 8, which is where it was originally supposed to end, but they just keep tacking on book after book after book…WHEN WILL IT END?! Whew – let me take a quick breather…

…Okay, I think I’m good to continue.

The only reason I keep reading these books is because I’m so far in that I have to finish it out. I wish I could just walk away…damn it, I wish I could…but I can’t. This series started out as 4 girls getting blackmailed for relatively harmless acts; there was no doubt that they were innocent victims. Well, those girls are gone and have been replaced with actual criminals; for real. They commit actual crimes, and can’t believe A is still blackmailing them. Really? I mean, really? Y’all are criminals and A has blackmailed you for much less; how the hell are you surprised that they’re still hanging around? *facepalm*

In a nutshell – they go on a cruise for Spring Break, and of course, A happens to be on the cruise with them. Aria befriends a dude named Graham and after finding out who his ex-girlfriend is, the girls start to question his motives. Hanna and Naomi get paired as roommates and while Naomi appears to be repairing their friendship, Hanna finds out Naomi is related to someone Hanna royally fucked, and you guessed it…the girls start to question her motives. Emily gets all lovey-dovey with a fugitive stowaway on the boat who tries to convince her to run away to Thailand with her. Yeah; and that’s not even the worst part. Emily actually considers it! Because it’s always a good idea to flee to a foreign country with only a freaking knapsack and someone you’ve known for 4 days when you’re 18 years old. Christ on a cracker. Lastly, Spencer gets involved with Reefer, only to find out he was previously involved with someone she knows, and let’s all say this together now…they start to question this girl’s motives.

This series started out great, and has just taken a serious nosedive since book 9. The story lines don’t seem to flow, not to mention they are downright ridiculous and not remotely believable. The girls have lost pretty much all credibility in my book because they aren’t innocent victims anymore. And you know what happens when your main characters become the bad guys? I stop rooting for them. I stop caring if they get caught – nope, scratch that – I actually want them to get caught. I want A to turn them in. Sure, in this book they start to go grow consciences but it’s not because they want to give the families of the people they hurt some closure; it’s because they can’t handle A blackmailing them. It’s not because they are trying to do the right thing – they’ve just done so many wrong things that they are living in constant paranoia.

I hate that I have been severely disappointed in the last four books of this series, because the first 8 were pretty damn good. It just seems like they are grasping for straws to keep this series going, and it’s just getting run into the ground. I don’t really care for any of the girls anymore which bums me out. It seems like everyone is related or connected to each other somehow; I mean, I’ve heard of six degrees of separation but this is sooo far beyond that. It’s annoying. And for the love of all that is holy, we still don’t know what Aria did in Iceland. This “cliffhanger-esque” moment has been strung along for the past 4 books. At this point, I almost don’t even care what she did anymore. I’ve been strung along so long that I’ve lost interest. I understand not divulging it right away to keep the reader guessing, but making them read four books where it gets brought up but never explained?! Dumb…just plain dumb. I’m upsetting myself just talking about this, so I’m done. Another Pretty Little Liars novel, another Pretty Little disappointment.  

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