Monday, July 20, 2015

ARC Review: Damage Done by Amanada Panitch

Publisher: Random House Books of Young Readers
Publishing Date: July 21st, 2015
Genre: YA Suspense
Pages: 336 pgs
ISBN: 9780553507492
Source: Received at a blogger even from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Summary from Goodreads:
22 minutes separate Julia Vann’s before and after.
Before: Julia had a twin brother, a boyfriend, and a best friend.
After: She has a new identity, a new hometown, and memories of those twenty-two minutes that refuse to come into focus. At least, that’s what she tells the police.
Now that she’s Lucy Black, she's able to begin again. She's even getting used to the empty bedroom where her brother should be. And her fresh start has attracted the attention of one of the hottest guys in school, a boy who will do anything to protect her. But when someone much more dangerous also takes notice, Lucy's forced to confront the dark secrets she thought were safely left behind.

One thing is clear: The damage done can never be erased. It’s only just beginning. . . .

My Review:

***This review will contain some spoilers but I will warn you beforehand***

This book has been penned the YA Gone Girl and with a sell like that how could I not want to read it. It follows Julia who is the survivor of a school shooting. In this shooting she lost her best friend, her boyfriend and her brother, who just so happened to be the killer. Julia and her family are forced to move to another town because of the fallout and Julia now goes by the name Lucy. Just as she begins getting comfortable in her new school, things begin to unravel and this when things get interesting.

This book is gripping and you will not want to put it down. I read this book in one sitting because I wanted to know what what going on. That being said, I had a few problems with the storyline. Some of it was too predictable and at the same time unbelievable.


At first you can't help but feel badly for Julia but as the story progresses you can't help but wonder why in the world people listen to her. Her new boyfriend Michael, a cop's son, keeps going along with her hairbrained schemes without much questioning. I would imagine someone like this would have a few more qualms about doing some of the things Lucy/Julia asks him to do. This relationship also felt a little rushed. They had barely been dating and Michael is hopelessly in love with her? I didn't really buy into that. Also, she so clearly doesn't feel the same way. I can't understand what he sees in her.

Also the parents in this book are barely present. If I was the parent and my child (seen through flashbacks) was disemboweling small animals, I would fight like hell to make sure they got the correct therapy to help change this. I would also want to make sure that my other child was safe. Then after the shootings, they hide vital information about their son and they allow their daughter to run around all willy nilly without any kind of parental control. This is so wildly unlikely that it is hard to ignore.

I admit that I did figure out the ending but not the full extent of it. I will not reveal what it is but I will say that I didn't see that part coming.

***Spoiler done***

In the grand scheme of things, this book is good for entertainment value. It will draw you in and keep you wondering what in the world is going on. It's much like a horror movie. Going in you know that you are not going to see an Oscar winning film but you still love it just the same. I'd say I enjoyed reading this book but you have to be able to overlook a few things if you really want to love it.

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