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Monday, May 30, 2011

My Thoughts: Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma

  
Seventeen-year-old Lochan and sixteen-year-old Maya have always felt more like friends than siblings. Together they have stepped in for their alcoholic, wayward mother to take care of their three younger siblings. As defacto parents to the little ones, Lochan and Maya have had to grow up fast. And the stress of their lives--and the way they understand each other so completely--has also also brought them closer than two siblings would ordinarily be. So close, in fact, that they have fallen in love. Their clandestine romance quickly blooms into deep, desperate love. They know their relationship is wrong and cannot possibly continue. And yet, they cannot stop what feels so incredibly right. As the novel careens toward an explosive and shocking finale, only one thing is certain: a love this devastating has no happy ending.

E-Arc received by Simon and Schuster.

I have no idea where to start with this. There are so many things that I want to say, but I don't know how to say them. I read Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma fairly quickly, and I am kind of glad that I did. I don't think I would have survived reading this book at a leisurely pace. Forbidden was an emotional roller coaster and I'm still on the fence about whether I liked it or not. I am warning you now, this is going to be a roller coaster of a review and I believe there will be spoilers. I was wrecked at the end of this book, it made me feel so many different things, but I think ultimately I was angry. At the time I was angry that a story like this exists and that it was riddled with so much angst. I knew that there was no way a story like this was going to end well, but I was in no way expecting what I got.

We have Lochan and Maya,  who are brother and sister and responsible for their three younger siblings. Their mother is not around a lot and their father has a new family in another country. So these two teenagers are forced to be grown ups and raise Willa-5, Tiffin-8 and Kit-13. While trying to balance school. Lochan-17, is brilliant but he cannot speak in public nor to strangers. He suffers from extreme panic attacks any time he tries. The only place he can be himself is with his family. Maya-16, is you average teenaged girl. She has friends, does well in school and she is fiercely loyal to her siblings.  Family to these two teenagers is very important. Scratch that, the children and their well being is extremely important. Their mother is never around, she's not much of a mother at all. She's living the fast life of parties, booze and a man who won't marry her. What I am trying to say it that Lochan and Maya did not have it easy. Most teenagers don't have the responsibility that these two had.

Facing the responsibilities of home, Lochan and Maya lean heavily on one another for support; they are each others best friend... and they end up falling in love with one another.  Now going into this I knew that Forbidden was about a brother and sister falling in love, I'd read a few reviews that I knew that it was an incestuous relationship, and that it did get pretty physical-I was not expecting full blown sexual relationship. Not at all. This is supposed to be a Young Adult book. This is one of the things I was a little uncomfortable with. There were sex scenes and they were a little graphic for what I would expect from a YA novel, however, Simon and Schuster have indicated on their website that the age target for this book is 16 and older. Which for me is acceptable, I would not recommend this book for anyone younger than that.

This book hurt my heart- I was sad for Lochan and his inability to talk to people, his phobia of public speech. He was an interesting character who was very broken, and the weight or caring for his siblings was sometimes to much for him. I was rooting for him in that I hoped that he would somehow work through his issues.  Maya was an ok character for me. She wasn't the most interesting. I found her to be the aggressor in her relationship with her brother, Lochan was fairly timid and if Maya hadn't "made the move" I don't believe that Lochan would have. I hurt for Maya at the end of the book (like the very end of the book), I ugly cried, and I could see how what she was going to to seemed to be her only option. That the only way to end the pain was to leave.

I did and did not like this book. I am going to try and explain why as best as I can. Tabitha Suzuma really has a gift for writing. not only was able to emote every single emotion that Lochan and Maya were feeling without saying it outright, she did it for the whole family. That was a lot of intense emotions, and for me it was overwhelming. I think that's what wasn't good for me. There was no way this story could have had a happy ending. No way. But the end destroyed me. Lochan's terror when he was in prison and his sacrifice. Kit's guilt at what he had done, Willa's heartbreak at having to say goodbye to her brother. It was heart breaking an I had a hard time reading the final pages to this story. I was thinking of the future consequences for this family. If they didn't need therapy before they are going to need it now. Actually I think I need it. 

I do think people should read this book, why--> Jillian-always inspiring, in her review on goodreads made a really good point, she said, "Forbidden instead explores the question, "What circumstances could lead two siblings to develop romantic and sexual feelings for each other?  And how would such a relationship likely progress. . .and end?"' This is why this book should be read.

I very much appreciate that Tabitha Suzuma had the courage to write this story, and the write it the way that she did. There was no sugar coating any thing. I want very much to have a conversation with this woman to talk about this book. I want to know how she felt writing it, and her purpose for writing it. This was my first Suzuma novel but it will not be my last.

Happy Reading Everyone!


25 comments:

  1. Thanks for the really thoughtful review. I tried to read the book once but I don't know, I guess I was a bit iffy about it because of what happens.

    But your review got me thinking that maybe I pre-judged it.

    I'll try to give it another go.

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  2. Beautiful review. Really, you summed up my thoughts about it in so many words. I enjoyed this one, but sorta hated it, too. It wasn't a book that could be loved, per se.
    Once again, what a wonderful review!

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  3. I've only heard great things about this. But good review! Don't be a stranger; stop by my blog and say hi! I'm not sure if we're fellow followers, but I follow you!

    Looking forward to hearing back from you,
    Cory @ Anti-Drug Reads

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  4. I totally wasn't expecting full blown sexual relationship either. Yet, it was one of the aspects that made the book so emotional rather than shocking. It was a lot to take.

    Thanks for your honest thoughts. I get the like and did not like thing, but for me, I definitely LOVED it, though I don't know if I'd have the energy to ever read it again.

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  5. I can understand your feelings, you explained yourself very well. I'm really not sure what to think about this one, if I should read it. I think I would be for sure wrecked after reading it as well.

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  6. I don't know if I would recommend this to anyone. But I don't know that I wouldn't either. It was an experience that's for sure.

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  7. I like it very much!

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  8. I just read the beginning of your review, because I still want to read Forbidden and don't want to be spoiled. It's kind of strange that Forbidden leaves bloggers with an absolute decision if they liked or disliked it. I am really curious about this novel and how I'll like it!

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  9. I just realised that I can finally read your review without being spoiled and I have to state that I simply love how you describe your experience reading Forbidden!This novel broke my heart a thousand times and I already knew there could be no way for a happy ending...but still I caught myself hoping till the bitter end.
    I liked their physical relationship and the graphic description of it, because it contributed to the story being more real and even sadder than it already is. And without the interaction the story would have never ended... well the tragic way it did. But with selling it as YA, I totally get your point.

    *sigh* Just commenting on your review sends me back to my melancholic post-Forbidden feeling!

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  10. This is an excellent expression of your thoughts and feelings. Obviously this book is very powerful. I don't think I can read this, and I have mixed feelings about it. Bottom line is that an author has the freedom to write what they want to write about.

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  11. Yes! You said everything so well! I decided that I really liked it, but yet I didn't. It was so hard to read at times and so tense that I wanted to look away yet was terrified to do so. The sexual relationship was what bothered me the most. All the description was just too much for me and I'm an adult that reads lots of adult books as well. I guess it just bothered me because they were brother and sister. And the whole time I felt like I was waiting for a bomb to drop. And the ending KILLED me. It was so frustrating but yet kind of seemed like it should be crazy like that. I don't know, but I think you explained your feelings better then I did. Such a hard book to review!

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  12. I've never really had a desire to read this book. It does interest me in a sort of morbid way, but I'm still not sure it's my type of read. Maybe I'll be on the fence about reading it forever :P

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  13. This book looks great. It´s on my wishlist a long time. I can´t wait to read this (: Thanks for the review.

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  14. When I saw this in a bookstore I was like What? That's crazy. I guess I should have given it a chance then.

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  15. Great review! I haven't read this book yet, but it sounds great!

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  16. Rebecca HipworthJuly 19, 2012 at 7:18 AM

    I've heard of this book many times before. Thanks for the review, it might be the push I need to finally go out and buy it.

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  17. Hmm. Doubtful.. But I think I'll see what I think of this one myself. Thank for the review!

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  18. i don't think I'll be reading this one, because it sounds pretty messed-up. Your review was great!

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  19. This sounds very interesting. I might pick it up one day~ Your review has me curious!

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  20. I L.O.V.E. this book! Love! I've read it a year or so ago and wow I'm still speechless!

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  21. I L.O.V.E. this book! Love! I've read it a year or so ago and wow I'm still speechless!

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  22. i would love to read this - it sounds like an awful story wonderfully told.

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  23. Great review and I understand what you're saying. However, I won't be reading this book. I like happy endings and since there won't be any in my life I want to enjoy them in my reading.

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  24. Forbidden is such a heart wrenching book! I love it to every bits and despise it as well at the same time! I like how they developed their feelings for each other... it was real but the thing that I don't really like is the ending! It could have been better! Great review!

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  25. I've got this book on my wishlist so I only read the beginning and end of your review, the less I know about the book, the better of a read it will be. I really want to read this book because the issue it explores is interesting and intense to write about, I'd love to see how the author handles it. I can definitely see this as a book that makes my mind whirl and my heart hurt.

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