Review: Losing Faith by Denise Jaden

Title: Losing Faith
Author: Denise Jaden
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication Date: September 7, 2010 
Links: Amazon | Goodreads
Source: Borrowed
When Brie's sister, Faith, dies suddenly, Brie's world falls apart. As she goes through the bizarre and devastating process of mourning the sister she never understood and barely even liked, everything in her life seems to spiral farther and farther off course. Her parents are a mess, her friends don't know how to treat her, and her perfect boyfriend suddenly seems anything but.

As Brie settles into her new normal, she encounters more questions than closure: Certain facts about the way Faith died just don't line up. Brie soon uncovers a dark and twisted secret about Faith's final night...a secret that puts her own life in danger. 
This is a pretty good book. There are some things that I like and some things that I don't particularly care for much. The main characters are interesting enough, and Brie's point of view makes her feel realistic. A couple of the peripheral characters are a little too over the top for me; it is almost as though everyone who experiences the loss of a loved one completely loses all sense of rationality and never regains it. But the main three characters are written pretty well for the most part, and I enjoyed them.

Brie's older sister, Faith, dies and some things about her death do not make sense to Brie, who is left with many questions and not much hope for answers. Her family is devastated and borders on nonfunctional. Her vapid friends don't know how to talk to her so they distance themselves. And Brie is left struggling, trying to muddle through her guilt, her unanswered questions, and what is left of her life on her own. She makes two new friends in the aftermath of her sister's death who are willing to help her try to get through it and find what she needs in order to move on with her life. It's not a totally unique plot, but one that makes for an interesting and endearing story, nonetheless.

Religion has a pretty large presence in this book, since some of the secondary characters, including Faith, are religious and active in the Church. Because Faith's life revolved around church groups and Christianity, it is a topic that comes up frequently. Religion is not brought into the plot in a preachy way, but it does get twisted by some fanatical and emotionally/mentally unstable characters, so at times it borders on the bizarre. I found myself rolling my eyes at some of the extremity of it, but I wouldn't say that it is completely unrealistic or anything. But I do think that I would have liked it a lot more if the "villains" had been more fleshed out.

I liked it, but there were some aspects of the book that kept me from loving it. Still, it is worth a read, particularly if you like contemporaries dealing with death and grief with a hint of mystery.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the honest review. Hmm. I was really really looking forward to this. I'll probably still go ahead and buy a copy, but I shall take heed to your words.


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