Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Nancy Werlin, IMPOSSIBLE

This is a curious book. It mixes a somewhat typical YA theme--teen pregnancy--with a "magic" theme of the Elfin Knight who, in "Scarborough Fair," demands three impossible tasks. The villain/Elfin Knight has been enchanting all the women on Lucy's family tree for centuries, and he takes the shape of the handsome Padraig Seeley--who is so charismatic that women (including Lucy's foster mother) can barely think in his presence. Lucy's mother went mad because of him, and after Lucy is raped by a boy who is possessed by Padraig's spirit, she decides she is going to keep the baby. The difference is that Lucy has foster parents and a handsome boy named Zach who are willing to help her perform the three impossible tasks to break the curse--their true love matters. I can see this appealing to some YA readers, the same way Twilight does. But the "magic" element didn't really work for me. Werlin writes very well, however, enough to make me curious about finding her National Book Award Finalist, The Rules of Survival, and her Edgar-winner, The Killer's Cousin.

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