This Gorgeous Game

Reader: Elise
Age: 15
Title: This Gorgeous Game
Author: Donna Freitas
Publisher: Frances Foster Books
Pub Date: 2010
Galley: Yes
Recommend: Yes
Annotation: When Olivia wins the chance to have a mentorship with her hero author, Father Mark Brendan, she thinks she couldn't get any luckier. But, soon enough, the work forces itself into every aspect of her life, and there's more than fatherly concern behind his interest in her.
Convince us to read the book: This book takes a look at a very serious issue, child abuse in the Catholic church, without stereotyping Catholics, and developing well rounded, interesting characters. It's a book that stuck with me, I kept thinking about the characters, and exactly what happened to them.
Compelling Aspect of the Book: The thing that made this gorgeous book stand out was its delicate balance. While it does look at corruption in the church, it never even comes close to hating it. There are really strong Catholic characters that Olivia turns to for help, and there's the really awful one, which enforces the author's point, because it's someone Olivia trusts and looks up to. Another place this could have gone very wrong is juggling keeping a creepy atmosphere, while being tasteful and remembering who you're writing for. The author did this beautifully. I could see how the situation could have gone much further, and gotten blown out of control, but I didn't ever feel like I wanted to put it down, so it will appeal to people with all different levels of tolerance. The protagonist's actions were very understandable, not whiny, and I could tell she was strong even in her awful circumstances.
Did you finish: Yes
Were you disappointed with the book at all: No
Cover: Fabulous would be a fitting word for this cover. The colors were catching and muted at the same time, because it wasn't a really cheerful book. The changing shades of purple were very catching. The way the girl looked so trapped, and how she was in the corner, hiding in herself, almost, reflected how she feels for a good portion of the book.
Age Range: 12-18+
Quality: 5Q Hard to imagine a better book
Popularity: 4P Broad general teen appeal

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