Friday, October 10, 2014

A new student review of Wildflower by Janine Carbone

VBat posted a new student review of Wildflower by Janine Carbone. See the full review.

You can hardly read the news today without seeing another instance of campus violence, rape, or mental illness. Wildflower combines these relevant issues in a thrilling story that weaves snippets of the past into Faith’s point of view. My favorite part of Wildflower was the book’s accurate depiction of college life. At one point, Faith goes up and down her dorm hallway, knocking on doors, looking for someone to hang out with for the day. The awkward search for friends during college is very real, and Faith’s reaction to the college lifestyle is very relatable. Faith herself is a very likable character— her introspective nature and natural defensiveness resonated with me. The other characters, including Jason, Casey, and Seth, were realistic, but I definitely didn’t feel as though I got to know them very well. I would have loved to see more of their lives outside of the main story. 
Wildflower’s plot was interesting and suspenseful, making use of many current issues to move the plot along. I would have liked to see the book evolve into a deeper social commentary, especially considering the prominence of campus violence and mental illness in the news. These hot issues were used to move the plot along, but I did not feel as though I left the book with a deeper understanding of the issues. The book would have benefitted from a deeper look at specific psychological phenomena. 
The style of the book occasionally distracted from the story with too many adjectives and redundant descriptions. The style issue did not overwhelm the story, however, and became less noticeable as the book progressed.
I would recommend Wildflower to female teens and young adults who enjoy realistic fiction.