Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Review: Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J. Bick

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Drowning Instinct
Ilsa J. Bick
Release date: February 1st, 2012
by Lerner Publishing Group

Goodreads / Purchase

There are stories where the girl gets her prince, and they live happily ever after. (This is not one of those stories.)

Jenna Lord’s first sixteen years were not exactly a fairytale. Her father is a controlling psycho and her mother is a drunk. She used to count on her older brother—until he shipped off to Afghanistan. And then, of course, there was the time she almost died in a fire.

There are stories where the monster gets the girl, and we all shed tears for his innocent victim. (This is not one of those stories either.)

Mitch Anderson is many things: A dedicated teacher and coach. A caring husband. A man with a certain…magnetism.

And there are stories where it’s hard to be sure who’s a prince and who’s a monster, who is a victim and who should live happily ever after. (These are the most interesting stories of all.)

Drowning Instinct is a novel of pain, deception, desperation, and love against the odds—and the rules.

*A copy was provided by Lerner Publishing Group for review purposes*
Insane! This is the best word to describe Drowning Instinct. Insanely good. Insanely terrifying. I-n-s-a-n-e! Ever since I cracked the cover, I can’t stop thinking about this book. First, to analyze it, now, to figure out what the heck I’ve just read. It’s the type of book that you just plow through because it makes you so restless that you must keep reading and reading, all the while knowing, just knowing, that the storm is coming. So close it could be right on the next page. Really, it’s freaking brilliant! Even though I’m still dumbfounded by it. You’ll turn the last page, you’ll gasp, you’ll think, you’ll reminisce. Some may even read it again, though I doubt that would help. Don’t get me wrong, the book is far from confusing, it’s simply unreal. You just need to read it to understand. It’s also the the type of story best enjoyed when you know nothing about it going in. So all I’m going to tell you is this:

Jenna tells us her story. Scratch that. She tells the police her story by way of a tape recorder they give her so she can do it at her own pace. (The format is reminiscent of Jay Asher’s Thirteen Reasons Why). While she’s telling it, you feel so close to this character it’s like you’re connected to her. You can hear her intonations, feel the tone of her voice. On top of this, she sounds her age; she sounds like you’d expect her to sound. It makes her so real and most importantly: sincere. Jenna comes off as smart and flawed, she’s struggling to find herself. To find someone who will listen and care. Then she does: she finds Mitch- her teacher. We’re sent deep into Jenna’s thoughts and feelings during this story. So deep that we get easily confused as to who, exactly, is the victim here. Things that you thought you were against, don’t seem so wrong anymore. It’s not black and white; just like real life. Flawlessly weaved together, the multiple plot lines hypnotizes you so, that you don’t realize you’ve been holding your breath for 45 minutes frantically turning the pages. (What? you can’t hold your breath for that long? Well… you will LEARN!).

Do you get it yet? This book is intense! Intense, suspenseful, passionate- all masterfully put together into an incredibly, profound novel.

5 Hot Espressos
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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.
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21 Responses to “Review: Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J. Bick”

  1. Celine

    OMG Giselle!! ♥ So glad you loved this book! I’ve heard of Ilsa & I think she wrote Ashes? But I haven’t heard of this book but it sounds AWESOME!!! Must add this to my TBR! Thank you for sharing this AMAZING review, Giselle! 🙂

    Celine @ Forget-me-not

  2. Nick

    I haven’t heard of this novel before.
    Thanks for introducing it to us 🙂
    I must say your review makes this book sound really good Giselle!
    As always, great review !

  3. Amy

    Wow! Sounds like an amazing book. Your review is awesome. This is a book I am going to have to get and MAKE time for. 🙂 It’s a 5 espresso book, how can I not need to buy it?

  4. Giselle

    Thanks guys!

    @Celine: Yes she wrote Ashes too about zombies. I haven’t read it yet but after reading this I surely plan to! 🙂

    @Amy: Yes Amy, you can’t NOT buy this one! 😛

  5. Ilsa

    Thank you for this lovely review, Giselle. I’m so pleased you liked this! For your followers: help me celebrate my baby book’s birthday and drop on by http://www.ilsajbick.com to enter a raffle for a signed copy of DROWNING INSTINCT. Giveaway begins midnight, 2/01/12 and ends 11:59 p.m. 2/08/12.

  6. Katie @ BlookGirl

    Wow! Talk about a rave review! I bet Ilsa will be excited to see this 🙂

    I’m interested to read this one, because so often, we think there is only one victim in certain situations, when in fact, there are many more.

    I am definitely adding this to my TBR List. Great review, Giselle!

  7. Giselle

    @Ilsa: My pleasure Ilsa! And I’ll tweet about your giveaway in a bit! 🙂

    @Katie: Thanks Katie. It’s true that most YA novels are very black and white as to what’s wrong and right but this one makes you see the other side of things.

  8. Amanda

    Okay. Definitely adding this to my list! It sounds so good!

    If you like this one, you should read Still Missing by Chevy Stevens. It’s an adult novel but it was a lot this one sounds. It’s about a woman who was kidnapped and she’s telling her therapist what happened to her. It’s heartbreaking but so good!

    Thanks for the great review!

  9. Rebecca (Kindle Fever)

    Ohhhhhhh! How I want this now. Like… BAD. o.o I was curious before your review and now I’m… desperate. I need to get my hands on a copy! I want to learn how to hold my breath for 45 minutes while finding out what’s happening in this book. ;o Awesome review, Giselle!

  10. Tristan

    First saw this book on Goodreads giveaways and the title caught my attention; I read the excerpt and added to my TBR list. Reading how much you enjoyed it and how phenomenally good it is tells me that I definitely have to pick up this book soon! Great review! Thanks!