Thursday, February 17, 2011

Review: Entangled by Cat Clarke

Entangled by Cat Clarke
Publisher: Quercus Books
Publication Date: UK - January 6, 2011, US - ??

What an infuriating book! And I mean that in the best possible way. Does that make any sense? Let me explain.

Grace wakes up to find her herself in a white room with white everything and three reams of paper and lots of pens waiting for her on the desk. She’s pretty sure how she got there; she just doesn’t know where she is or why she’s there. Grace wonders why her kidnapper, Ethan, (who looks familiar to her although she can’t place how she might know him) is being so nice to her.  Not sure what else to do, Grace writes about her best friend Sal and boyfriend Nat. Through her writing Grace looks back and uncovers truths that ultimately led her to her current predicament.

So, Entangled is one of those books where the cover copy really doesn’t explain the book at all and in this case I was happy about that because I was expecting a different story than the one I read. And to be honest, I really much rather prefer the story I read to the story I was expecting.

Grace is a train wreck of a girl. She’s clever, beautiful, impulsive, sad, madly in love with her boyfriend Nat, occasionally happy, and not sure about her relationship with her mom. I liked her from the first page or on day three of her ordeal because that’s where the book starts, and found her journey to be fascinating. Starting on day three, made me wonder what happened those first two days and why Grace didn’t tell us about them.

I found the initial setting of the white room to be a genius choice because it forced Grace to fill the space with her story. But, at the same time, the room felt like a blank slate, a chance to start over; a way for Grace to identify and fix what wasn’t working in her life before. As Grace writes, the reader is introduced to Sal and Nat, her best friend and boyfriend respectively. Through her relationships with them, the reader learns a lot about Grace and how she deals with life. Grace’s voice felt real and I never doubted for a second that she was an actual teen dealing with problems many teens face.

About more than relationships, Entangled deals with some tough subjects - depression, suicide, cutting, and teen pregnancy are all touched upon by Grace as she writes. At times, it was a hard book to read. But, it was also one of those books that worms its way into your head so that it’s all you can think about for days, even after you've finished reading. It was a book that  made me laugh and cry, okay I cried more than I laughed and the last 20 pages or so tore me to pieces, but I had to make it through so that I could find out how Grace’s story ended.

was a dark, engrossing read. It was a book I couldn't put down and when I got to the last page, I wanted to know what happened next. It was a fabulous debut all around. I can’t wait to see what’s next for Cat Clarke. 

***Full disclosure - I won a copy of the ARC from the author***


  1. Very thoughtful, insighful review. I'll definitely look for this one at the library.

  2. I loved this one too and I'm really looking forward to Cat's next book!

  3. This book looks really good. Plus, the cover is beautiful


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