December 02, 2021

#BookReview: What Beauty There Is (What Beauty There is #1) by Cory Anderson






Synopsis: Winter. The sky is dark. It is cold enough to crack bones. 

Jack Morton has nothing left. Except his younger brother, Matty, who he'd do anything for. Even die for. Now with their mother gone, and their funds quickly dwindling, Jack needs to make a choice: lose his brother to foster care, or find the drug money that sent his father to prison. He chooses the money.

Ava Bardem lives in isolation, a life of silence. For seventeen years her father has controlled her fate. He has taught her to love no one. Trust no one. Now Victor Bardem is stalking the same money as Jack. When he picks up Jack's trail, Ava must make her own wrenching choice: remain silent or help the brothers survive.

Choices. They come at a price.



Goodreads
Amazon

Rating: 1 Stars
My Review:   Unfortunately the writing style for this story just didn't work for me.  I think that this new series will find its audience but sadly it just wasn't for me.  






From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up-A desperate boy risks everything to keep his brother out of foster care in this heart-pounding and heartbreaking story of survival and sacrifice. Seventeen-year-old Jack and his second-grade brother, Matty, only have each other. With their father incarcerated and their mother recently deceased, their only hope of sticking together is finding the money their father went to prison for stealing. Deeply impoverished and terrified of child protective services getting involved, Jack sets out to track down that cash, pursued at every turn by drug dealers and Bardem, his father's partner in crime. His only hope comes in the form of Ava, who decides to help them and gets wrapped up in their mission. But Ava's secret-that she's Bardem's daughter-guarantees there is no way things can end happily. Unremittingly bleak and gritty, this suspenseful story centers around the ravages of poverty and drug addiction that have left Jack and Matty with nothing. Breathtakingly beautiful writing and tender characters collide with a brutal plot filled with bloodshed and anguish. The body count piles up as Jack, Matty, and Ava try to hide in the quiet, frigid emptiness of rural Idaho, never more than half a step ahead of their hunters. The lengths Jack goes to keep his family together and the obstacles he faces will leave readers gutted. A gorgeous, intense, and shocking look at chaos, survival, fate, and betrayal. Characters' ethnicities aren't named and Jack and Matty are described as pale. VERDICT A first purchase and a must-read. Prepare to be haunted and chilled to the bone by this exceptional story.-Amanda MacGregor, Parkview Elem. Sch., Rosemount, MNĪ±(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review

"Beautifully written and superbly constructed, Anderson pulls you onto a chilling footpath of love and loss―and keeps you there until you've read every last word." ―Ruta Sepetys, #1 New York Timesbestselling author and Carnegie Medal winner of Salt to the Sea 

"A ­gorgeous, intense, and shocking look at chaos, survival, fate, and betrayal... A first purchase and a must-read. Prepare to be haunted and chilled to the bone by this exceptional story." ―School Library Journal starred review

"Intense, brutal, and searingly honest, Anderson’s debut features intricate plotting and action that hold up against the best thriller novels, yet it is all the more remarkable for its tender, multidimensional characterization and sharp, crystalline prose. Riveting and unforgettable." ―Kirkus starred review

"Debut author [Cory] Anderson captures the setting and souls of her characters through her sparse yet lyrical text, creating a suspenseful, throbbing tale of love and survival, choices and consequences. Told in alternating voices, this powerful story will mesmerize." ―Booklist starred review

"Readers who like their novels pitch dark and bone chilling will revel in the horrifying villain and the trio of kids locked into a dilemma they cannot possibly resolve." ―The Bulletin for the Center of Children's Books 

"Anderson’s starkly atmospheric thriller illuminates ways in which cycles of poverty and incarceration can disenfranchise children." ―Publishers Weekly

"[A] taut psychological thriller. Anderson’s spare, lyrical writing yields great insight into her characters, and the unforgiving Idaho winter landscape is almost a character in its own right." - Horn Book










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