Friday, February 18, 2011

Book Review:Mad Love by Suzanne Selfors

Writing her own love story could drive a girl insane!

When you’re the daughter of the bestselling Queen of Romance, life should be pretty good. But 16-year-old Alice Amorous has been living a lie ever since her mother was secretly hospitalized for mental illness. After putting on a brave front for months, time is running out. The next book is overdue, and the Queen can’t write it. Alice needs a story for her mother—and she needs one fast. That’s when she meets Errol, a strange boy who claims to be Cupid, who insists that Alice write about the greatest love story in history: his tragic relationship with Psyche. As Alice begins to hear Errol’s voice in her head and see things she can’t explain, she must face the truth—that she’s either inherited her mother’s madness, or Errol is for real.
(From Goodreads)

Mad Love is an engaging read with great characters, realistic issues, and the perfect amount of romance.

Mad Love features a subject which doesn't often make it into YA fiction, characters who are struggling with mental illness. It's unfortunate that it isn't more common, because mental illness such a prevalent issue in our society. Selfors has done a superb job pointing out that people with mental illness are still people. Alice's mother clearly still cares about her daughter, although it didn't always seem that way. During manic spells, Belinda was attentive and loving to Alice. During the depressions, however, the disorder came first, leaving Alice to care for herself. I also thought that she did an excellent job showing the strain that mental illness can create for a family. Alice is not only trying to cover for her mother, but she's also trying to find some way to pay the bills. Add this to the stress of worrying that she'll develop the same issues as her mother, and seeing her mother in a catatonic state...well, you can see how Alice would be a bit on edge.

Selfors ties in the mythology of Eros and Psych, but adds her own spin to it. To be frank, the version found in Mad Love felt more like a Greek myth than the actual myth. I mean, myths always seem to end tragically (see Echo & Narcissus, Prometheus, Persephone, etc), so I always find it odd that somehow Eros and Psyche ended up united forever.

I don't often give out A ratings, but there was something about Mad Love that really wowed me. The characters felt consistent, the plot seemed to flow effortlessly, and it didn't gloss over the deeper subject matter. Selfors surpassed the expectations that I had for the book, and I'm looking forward to her next release.

Check back later today for an interview with the author!

Mad Love
By Suzanne Selfors
Published by Bloomsbury
336 Pages
Rating: A
Received for Review

4 comments:

Aubrey said...

I really liked it too! It took me by surprise how much I liked it. Definitely worth reading. Great review. ;)

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

O I am so glad to hear this and am looking forward to it even more now.

Jenny N. said...

Sounds like there's substance to the story as I initially thought it would be another fluffy read.

Katie said...

This does sound like a really interesting book. Even if it was fluff (which as jenny points out your review suggests otherwise). Can't wait to read it, I enjoyed reading your thoughts :)

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