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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

very intresting

I couldn't put this book down, this novel had and intresting plot and I didn't suspect most of the turn of events that come. Overall it was a great book and I highly recommend it.

posted by Anonymous on December 24, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

The synopsis is mysterious. I didn't know if this was going to b

The synopsis is mysterious. I didn't know if this was going to be a contemporary book or a paranormal book. I didn't know where it was heading, and that intrigued me. What I didn't realize was that I would finish the book still not knowing what happens.
This was a confu...
The synopsis is mysterious. I didn't know if this was going to be a contemporary book or a paranormal book. I didn't know where it was heading, and that intrigued me. What I didn't realize was that I would finish the book still not knowing what happens.
This was a confusing book for me. There doesn't seem to be a focus for the plot except that Will and Scarlett were meant to be. The beginning was okay. It wasn't outstanding, but I could see a general course for the novel. Scarlett is depressed, anorexic, and self harms by denying her body's needs. However, the plot doesn't end with Will saving her and righting her life. It introduces a paranormal element with Will's abilities. This may still have worked with the plot; instead, it leads to difficulties in their relationship and a lot of drama that doesn't make much sense in hindsight. In short, despite the paranormal aspect of the book, this reads like a normal high school drama and not even a good one at that. There is the exposition and some rising action; however, I can't name a definite climax or change happening, the falling action takes forever, and there is no real sense of resolution. By the end, I was skimming pages in the hopes of finding some interesting development.
Honestly, Scarlett annoyed me for the most part. She doesn't treat herself well, and her relationships are a mess. She stays with Andy, though she isn't attracted to him anymore, if she ever was, and he's a jerk whose only purpose for being with her seems to be getting into her pants. She and Lily and best friends, but they mostly only hang around, talk about guys, and dress up. She is inexplicably drawn to Will from the start, and they're perfect for each other. I could overlook the instalove because Will's abilities pull him towards her, but the changes in his behavior after they begin dating are out of character. Normal jealousy I can understand, but Will typically has such good control over his behavior that his actions seem groundless and unbelievable.
In fact, the main characters are relatively unstable in their attitudes and motivations, they don't show much, if any, growth, and they fall flat for me. I do understand some of Scarlett's feelings at the beginning. However, I couldn't feel her emotions. It may have helped to know how close she was to her brother, but little information is given other than the circumstances of his death and a few other details. I can't get a feel for him as a person and how his loss would impact his family so severely.
With no clear sense of direction in the plot and with flat, unrelatable characters, Sacred rambles through a time of change in Scarlett's life. I say rambles because that's what it feels took place. There are no major developments in Scarlett's life after she dumps Andy and dates Will, and there are no periods of intense emotions that made me feel as though I was there with Scarlett. Overall, this book fell flat for me along with its characters. It just wasn't for me.

posted by ImaginaryReads on December 22, 2012

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  • Posted March 24, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Sacred by Elana K. Arnold was a tough read in the beginning.  No

    Sacred by Elana K. Arnold was a tough read in the beginning.  Not because it wasn’t good!  But because the subject and emotions that were found in those first chapters was heartbreaking.

    Scarlett and her family are still struggling with the death of her older brother, Ronny.  After an unexpected cerebral aneurysm in the middle of a soccer game, the sudden loss becomes unbearable to this family.  With a mother who is barely living, locking herself in the bedroom self medicating herself with sleeping pills to ease her pain, a father who is trying to keep the peace, and Scarlett who has chosen to harm herself in order deal with the loss.

    The thing is, Scarlett knows what she’s doing is bad for herself.  She can’t even bear to look at herself in the mirror, but all she knows now is emptiness and feeling hollow.  Her only escape is riding.  To feel while riding her horse along the trails.  And it’s on these same trails that Scarlett comes across Will.  Scared and alone on the trail, Will’s demeanour is anything but normal.

    But Scarlett soon learns that Will was not just some random tourist whom she will never see again.  It seems Will and his after have recently moved to Catalina Island to escape a secret of their own.  Scarlett instantly feels this pull towards Will, and it seems Will feels the same way.  Time and time again, Will plays the part of the hero, and rescues Scarlett time and time again.  Little does Scarlett realize that Will also seems to be saving her from herself.

    When I first started reading Sacred by Elana K. Arnold, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.  I was instantly pulled in by the emotional and powerful writing style of author, Elana K. Arnold.  The way in which she describes the after effects of Ronny’s death, and talks about just how much the loss is slowly tearing everyone apart.  With her descriptive writing, it was easy enough to get completely immersed in the Catalina Island.  Because of the beautiful description of the scenery and way of life for the locals, I am even more curious in wanting to visit and experience everything I read for myself.

    The characters found in the book are ones that I’m sure readers will be able to relate to, regardless of the subject matter.  It was really interesting to witness Scarlett’s struggles with her eating, and it was equally wonderful to read just how much support she has in the background…especially with a now non-existent mother.  And can I just say that I want my very own Lily!  She is a totally awesome best friend, and pretty much embodies just what a best friend should be.  Totally supportive, constantly looking out for Scarlett’s well being, not being overly pushy, and knowing what to say and day for whatever situation arises.

    And don’t even get me started on Will.  With the story containing a somewhat supernatural element, Will is one character that was so great to follow.  A sexy hero in waiting.  And the way he deals with Scarlett?  How sweet he is, how attentive, and how he is always at the right place at the right time.  There’s no way that anyone could NOT fall for Will.

    With a very contemporary subject matter and a dash of supernatural, readers will fall in love with the story of Scarlett and Will, the hurtles that they both must jump, and the way in which they both find each other during a dark time, and during time where they need each other the most.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 15, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    4.5 Stars 'Sacred' is a beautiful young adult novel full of hop

    4.5 Stars

    'Sacred' is a beautiful young adult novel full of hope and romance. It follows Scarlett Wenderoth as she struggles to contain her grief after the death of her older brother. Scarlett's life has been roughly divided into Before Ronny Died and Since Ronny Died - and the parts that have been happening since his death have been really hard on her. Her parents are consumed with their own grief and trying to keep the family B&B running. Scarlett's only tether to life is her mare, Delilah, and her best friend Lily. Scarlett begins to lose weight at an alarming rate and her parents don't seem to even notice. She feels alone with her only outlet being Delilah. On one of their rides, she meets a mysterious guy named Will - who seems to ease Scarlett's grief and makes her feel safe. Scarlett and Will's relationship grows deeper and she finds herself feeling alive again - until Scarlett discovers that Will is hiding a secret that might bring everything they have to pieces.

    This was a fantastic young adult novel that revolves around first love and romance, but also deals with some deep issues such as death, loss, grief, family, self discovery, and trust. The characters are unique and very realistic. I especially liked Scarlett - she was a great lead character with her flaws and obvious issues, but she also showed character growth and the ability to have courage and to move on with life after a devastating loss. Will's character was a perfect fit to go along with Scarlett. He's an interesting and mysterious guy a first, but definitely has layers of his own once we get to know him. The setting was perfect for the novel - the small island of Catalina off the coast of California provided the perfect sense of isolation yet community that the characters needed. The plot was so sad but also filled with hope and romance as we see Scarlett blossom into the young woman she was meant to be. The novel's writing was enchanting and I couldn't put the book down. I was immediately drawn into the lyrical prose and the vivid descriptions. The pace was well done and the plot flowed effortlessly. I'm excited that there will be a sequel released this fall - I can't wait to see what will happen to Scarlett and Will next. Highly recommended for fans of YA fantasy and contemporary fiction.

    Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

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