Thursday, March 15, 2012

Review: Pure by Juliana Baggott

We know you are here, our brothers and sisters . . . 
Pressia barely remembers the Detonations or much about life during the Before. In her sleeping cabinet behind the rubble of an old barbershop where she lives with her grandfather, she thinks about what is lost-how the world went from amusement parks, movie theaters, birthday parties, fathers and mothers . . . to ash and dust, scars, permanent burns, and fused, damaged bodies. And now, at an age when everyone is required to turn themselves over to the militia to either be trained as a soldier or, if they are too damaged and weak, to be used as live targets, Pressia can no longer pretend to be small. Pressia is on the run.

Burn a Pure and Breathe the Ash . . .
There are those who escaped the apocalypse unmarked. Pures. They are tucked safely inside the Dome that protects their healthy, superior bodies. Yet Partridge, whose father is one of the most influential men in the Dome, feels isolated and lonely. Different. He thinks about loss-maybe just because his family is broken; his father is emotionally distant; his brother killed himself; and his mother never made it inside their shelter. Or maybe it's his claustrophobia: his feeling that this Dome has become a swaddling of intensely rigid order. So when a slipped phrase suggests his mother might still be alive, Partridge risks his life to leave the Dome to find her.

When Pressia meets Partridge, their worlds shatter all over again.

(Summary Amazon)

Julianna Baggott's Pure is a gritty dystopian tale portraying life after the effects of a biochemical warfare.  Partridge lives in the Dome, where the "pures" were protected and left unharmed during the detonations, while Pressia lives on the outside, where people were mutated and fused with things around them like metals, appliances and even other people or animals.  I was very impressed with the world-building and the detailed descriptions of the characters and settings.  It made it very easy to imagine everything like a movie in my head, complete with CGI effects.
As much as the book excelled in the creativity of the plot and the imaginative world-building, Baggott hooked me with Pure’s amazing cast.  I loved the individual stories portrayed and the depth and humanity in the characters.  I loved Pressia.  She is a strong, good-hearted, and very strategic main character.  She is a survivor and throughout the book she finds herself and re-evaluates her beliefs and her contradictory feelings about her scars and her longing to be pure.  Partridge, the lead male character is a reluctant hero.  He's smart and vulnerable but very loyal.  He also discovers what it truly means to be pure and how a scar can define people in different ways.  These two characters eventually run into one another and find that they each need something from the other.  Unpredictable and exciting twists and turns ensue, and the result is a fascinating tale filled with secrets and discovery.  Filled with adventure and suspense, romance and heartbreak, Pure is an excellent read and I am excited to find out what happens next.

5 out of 5 Stars
Review by Mary Munar

Purchase: Pure
Author: Juliana Baggott 
Release Date: February 8, 2012
Series: Yes, 1 of 3
Pages: 236
Genre: Dystopian

1 comment:

  1. I've been on the fence about reading this. It looks really good but I'm kinda tired of the whole influx of Dystophian novels.
    Your review makes me want to read it now.


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