Sunday, April 28, 2013

Review: Castles on the Sand by EM Tippetts

If there’s one thing Madison Lukas understands, it’s pain. The pain she feels when her mother ignores her completely. The pain her best friend endures as her parents starve her as punishment. The pain of a dangerous boy whose mother has to be carried away by law enforcement on a regular basis.

She gets it. She feels the pain of others as if it were her own.

But when a mysterious man claiming to be her long lost brother appears with promises of relieving her suffering, trusting him could reveal more truths than Madison is ready for. Because the truth can hurt, too.

Madison is your normal, every day plain girl... or at least, she thinks so. But really, she's this bright, kind, loving girl that doesn't give herself enough credit. Everyone around her seems to be in their own world. Her best friend lashes out whenever she doesn't get her own way, her mother barely acknowledges her existence. And Madison accepts it and everyone sees her as a pushover, but Madison just loves with a big heart and accepts people for who they are. 

She soon discovers that she has these brothers that she never knew about. Her brother John, becomes a big part of her life, and immediately tries to step in and "fix" what he sees is wrong in her life. While she is trying to build some type of relationship with this new brother, she also has guys coming out of the word work for her. 

First is JP, the guy she's crushed on forever, who is a super hot, popular chess player (yes, I said chess player), then there's Carson, the hot Mormon boy, and Alex the hot psycho dangerous outcast. 

My favorite person in this story just might have been Siraj, Madison's boss at her job at the Library. Every day she'd come to work, she'd always say her day was fine but he quickly learns that her definition of fine may be different then others and his react to it is hilarious. 

There are so many factors in this book which made is an emotional ride. It deals with psychosis, and other mental illness. It's deals with self respect and unconditional love. And the fine like that one can someone walk when those two topics don't seem mutually exclusive. There was also some talk of Mormonism  which is a religion her brothers and Carson were a part of. I felt like this book didn't promote or detract from the religion but gave what would be considered honest feelings about someone first learning about the religion would be. 

But what made this book extra special, was the fact that even as we are dealing with these extreme topics, I still found myself laughing and giggling through the entire thing. That's not to say that it makes light of some important topics, but it gives you a sense of lightness while reading it. You aren't weighted down by the story and that makes it beautiful. 

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