Review: Panic by Lauren Oliver

Panic
by Lauren Oliver
Format: Hardback / paperback / ebook
Nr of Pages: 416
Published: March 6th 2014 by Hodder & Stoughton Ltd 
Synopsis:
Panic began as so many things do in Carp, a poor town of twelve thousand people in the middle of nowhere: because it was summer, and there was nothing else to do.

Heather never thought she would compete in panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She'd never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought.

Dodge has never been afraid of panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game; he's sure of it. But what he doesn't know is that he's not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for.

For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliances, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them-and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most.

Rating: 3,5/4

Review:
Lauren Oliver is a favourite on our blog. We are very passionate about the way she creates real characters and how she moves her plot lines. We like her so much she even has her own tag (which is something not every author has on our blog so that gives her some status) and she was the first author we ever interviewed (our motto is “Go big or go home!”).
We have been following Lauren’s books since Delirium and besides Spindles we have read them all. Liesl and Po is my favourite. I have a soft spot for children’s fiction and Lauren’s book was just like reading a fairytale, also the illustrations were soft and amazing.
Panic is a stand alone YA book (which is becoming more and more unusual in the gender) and tells us the story of Heather, her friends and the very dangerous game that it’s Panic. Stuck in the little city of Carp the teens have found a new way to celebrate prom in a game were they will face their phobias, nightmares and possible and not at all improbable death. This years e prize is 67,000$ which is more than enough money for anyone to leave Carp behind forever. When we first meet Heather she is not suppose to be competing but things change quickly than the wind in a storm and before Heather even realizes she is in and nothing will ever be the same.
As a writer Lauren likes to get her hands dirty and to create different types of families. In this book alone we meet broken families, okay families, getting by families and “I ran from home” families. She also realizes that just because you have fallen out with your parents it doesn’t mean you have fallen out with your siblings. We also meet very brave characters that take it upon themselves to save themselves which is always a good approach to problems.
Panic is about courage in the face of fear but it’s ultimately the realization that we will always have fear and we will always rise above it. It’s a contemporary novel that reads like science-fiction or fantasy because the game is so intense and so out of the ordinary you completely forget that you are dealing with normal teenagers and not “super heroes”.
I rated Panic 3,5 stars because I am not sure how I fell about it. It was a fast paced read I rented out of the library Saturday and returned it on Tuesday but although I enjoyed the story it didn’t really catch my fancy. The book is well written and the suspense builds up to the Joust. We want to know who is going to make, who will take the grant prize and but at the same time the whole setting seemed strange. I think it’s because this is a dark book. People keep telling my teenage years are hard and if you have bad parents they are harder in the middle of her dark life Heather has the game which is even darker but since she has lived all her life in the dark she isn’t that much afraid. She is just afraid enough to not be insane. Even so I am not quite sure if she wasn’t truly insane because you see this novel has tigers in it.
Good book by an author we truly enjoy but not one of my favourites.

You can read the story of the origin of the game Panic if you click here and follow the links.

 Cat / Ki
Known bookaholic and writer on free weekends. Cat loves books and everything that's related to them. Sometimes she has feelings and opinions about books and the world and she writes about them in her blog Encruzilhadas Literárias. She also has a personal GoodReads account and she believes the world is a better place for it (AKA no more repeated books from relatives as gifts). She lives in the UK and can often be found either in Waterstones or the Charity Shops.

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