Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Broken by A.E. Rought

BrokenA string of suspicious deaths near a small Michigan town ends with a fall that claims the life of Emma Gentry's boyfriend, Daniel. Emma is broken, a hollow shell mechanically moving through her days. She and Daniel had been made for each other, complete only when they were together. Now she restlessly wanders the town in the late fall gloom, haunting the cemetery and its white-marbled tombs, feeling Daniel everywhere, his specter in the moonlight and the fog.

Broken by A.E. Rought is a twist on the classic Frankenstein by Mary Shelley.  First, Frankenstein is the classic story of the hubris shown by the main character in acting as God.  There was mob mentality linked to criticism of this novel and also connections to sexuality (the monster has no gender) and also connections to the author’s life (Shelley miscarriage so there are some critiques that compares that ordeal to the novel.)  Frankenstein is a masterpiece; Broken is well a ride of intrigue, dash of hubris, dash of zombies, mixed with star-crossed lovers and a big helping of “wait… that just happened?”  Broken is a standalone book with borrowed aspects of another story. 

Emma Gentry is the MC; she has just lost her boyfriend in a tragic accident.  Trying to cope with the loss of one of the most important people in her life, Emma is just resurfacing from what seems like a slumber away from others.  She is an empty shell of her former self, an enigma to those around her because everyone expects her to be herself again.  As she is trying to navigate through her life Alex Franks crashes in and stops all progress.

There is something frighteningly familiar about Alex, his eyes have the same signature Daniel look to them and there is something about Alex that makes Emma feel again.  Emma doesn’t necessarily feel safe around Alex at all times because there are things that no one can or will explain to her.  How did Alex’s father save is life?  Why was there a string of disappearances around the time of Daniel’s death?  Why does Dr. Franks hate Emma? And how is Daniel’s best friend connected? 

The book takes a little while to get to the actual meat and potatoes of this story; however, it remains intriguing enough to reach the climactic ending.  A tale of love lost, mad science experiments, separation of soul and body and ultimately of betrayal.   Broken keeps readers engaged and thinking about the ethics behind Dr. Franks and Alex Franks.

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