Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
February 21, 2017
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Mira and Francesca Cillo—beautiful, overprotected, odd—seemed untouchable. But Ben touched seven parts of Mira: her palm, hair, chest, cheek, lips, throat, and heart. After the sisters drown themselves in the quarry lake, a post-mortem letter from Mira sends Ben on a quest to find notes in the seven places where they touched. Note by note, Ben discovers the mystical secret at the heart of Mira and Francesca's world, and that some things are better left untouched.
That is me when it comes to how to write this review . . . and to (or because of) the book's ending. There was a lot I did really like about Beautiful Broken Girls. I thought author Kim Savage created some really intriguing, complicated and unique characters. Ben's past and how it plays into the decisions he makes and the way others view him made him an interesting main character and different than I first thought he was.
I liked how the 'mystical secret' of the Cillo girls was introduced and what it was. Seeing things both from Ben's point-of-view and more directly from Mira's let you see not only some of the truth, but also how appearances and assumptions can affect how something's perceived.
This author does a nice job giving us characters that are flawed or 'damaged' in some way and putting them into a story that transpires rather differently than you first expect. It was true with After the Woods and here, as well. What was going on in Francesca and Mira's lives, the secrets they were keeping could be a bit strange, but thanks to the parts narrated by Mira, you can understand it. (Or some of it.)
The ending just did not make sense to me. I knew what they were doing, but why exactly they were doing it and how it really fit within the rest of the story just wasn't there (for me, at least). There was not the resolution, for either the characters or some of the questions posed in the novel, that was needed. It was not the ending I wanted for the book and still has me scratching my head.
I do like the ideas Kim Savage has, her writing, the characters she creates and the different pieces of their pasts and presents. Beautiful Broken Girls didn't become a truly finished puzzle once those pieces were assembled but I will read more from this author.
See my review of Kim Savage's After the Woods
review copy received from publisher, via NetGalley