Monday, December 17, 2012

Early Review of HURT by Travis Thrasher


Photo Credit: David C. Cook

Rating: 5 out of 5

Rating: 5 out of 5

Chris Buckley’s life has been strange and relentlessly tragic since he first arrived in Solitary, North Carolina. He’s watched people die, and he’s learned that some people think he’s something important. Dark forces that work beneath the surface of Solitary’s strange enough exterior are determined to draw Chris into their plans for evil and power. But Chris’s heart is being pursued by good just as much as it is being pursued by evil, and Chris must fight for what he loves most before he has to watch more people die. A girl named Kelsey has captured his heart, but can he rescue her from Solitary’s consuming darkness before it’s too late? Or will his tragic history repeat itself once again?

HURT is the final book in Travis Thrasher’s young adult series The Solitary Tales. With a story whose scope has been as big as the first three books have built it to be, I held a lot of expectation going into the conclusion of the story. With every page I felt drawn to an epic conclusion where questions would be answered and hope for the characters’ futures would be realized. And with every page the reality of Chris’ situation looked more and more bleak. If Thrasher has taught us one thing with the story of The Solitary Tales, it is that no one is safe. There are no guarantees that your favorite characters will make it to the end in one piece. So you read, not quite sure where this story is going to end up and if happiness is even possible in the midst of Solitary.

I loved the three previous books leading up to this one, but this one was by far my favorite. It was clear that the other books were leading up to this one, that this final act was what the story was all about, and I was almost completely satisfied with the conclusion. I say almost completely satisfied because I closed the book wanting more, wishing that the story wasn’t over, and hoping that this wasn’t the last I would read about the characters in The Solitary Tales.

Travis Thrasher has created a story that is creepy and beautifully redemptive. It is as much about Chris Buckley’s journey of his discovery of a loving God who battles against the darkness as it is about his discovery of Solitary’s secrets and his connection to them. Young adults and adults alike will find a compelling and suspenseful story in The Solitary Tales.

Review copy provided by David C. Cook

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