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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting and heartbreaking
Initially, Entangled seems to be a story within a story. In the immediate present there's the mystery surrounding seventeen-year-old protagonist Grace's current predicament: confined to a white room by the strange but seemingly gentle Ethan, she has no idea what he wants from her or what he might be planning to do. Will she ever see the outside world again? With only pens...
Published on 3 Jan 2011 by L

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sad and a little confusing
I knew very little about this book when I picked it up except for the fact it has a rocking cover, the blurb on the back and the girl has the same hair colour as me! This book was nothing like I was expecting and it took me on a journey I didn't expect.

Grace has decided to take her life. Before she goes through with it in a children's playground she speaks to...
Published on 21 Dec 2011 by Emma


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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Haunting and heartbreaking, 3 Jan 2011
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
Initially, Entangled seems to be a story within a story. In the immediate present there's the mystery surrounding seventeen-year-old protagonist Grace's current predicament: confined to a white room by the strange but seemingly gentle Ethan, she has no idea what he wants from her or what he might be planning to do. Will she ever see the outside world again? With only pens and paper to occupy her, she guesses that he wants her to write. So she does the only thing she can; she writes down the story of the recent events that led to her suicide attempt - a story of love and loss and a pain so deep she can't bear to feel it. And as she writes, we realise that these two seemingly separate strands are actually part of the same story, itself drawing upon threads of other characters' lives too. Entangled isn't a tidily plotted tale unfolding in a vacuum; it's knotty and it's messy, and that's what makes it such compulsive reading.

Narrator Grace is the kind of character who, at first, will probably divide readers' opinion. On the surface, she's caustic and irreverent, recounting the story of her attempted suicide and abduction with an unnverving matter-of-factness. Even as a hostage, she's checking out the physical charms of her captor and sniping about the mother who'll barely notice she's gone. While this does mean she's perhaps not the most obviously sympathetic protagonist, her voice is real and authentic and arresting from the very first page. She might say things that make you uncomfortable, but you'll want to hear them. She'll definitely make you laugh. And as her story unfolds, you'll see that all her spikiness is actually armor. She needs it. Underneath, she's fragile and broken and lost.

However, the beauty of Entangled is that author Cat Clarke doesn't cast her main character as a victim. Yes, Grace has been abandoned and deceived, but she's not the only person in the story who has been hurt - and she's not entirely blameless herself. Her story is about control as much as betrayal; she refuses to see what the reader soon does, and makes it impossible for other characters to speak the truth. Yet there's still a huge twist in this tale, as we finally realise the truth about Grace's captor. It's the best kind of twist, too; the kind that clicks perfectly into place, even though you never saw it coming. The kind that, if you reread the book, will suddenly give a whole new context to what you previously thought were incidental little details.

Entangled is one of the most powerful novels I've read in a long time. I suspect that readers' interpretations of Grace's story will differ greatly, not just because of the complexity of Cat Clarke's storytelling, but also because when you come to care about a character deeply you can't help but mull over their motivations long after you've read the last page. Layered and haunting and heartbreaking, this is one remarkable debut.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Confusing yet loveable, 15 Aug 2011
This review is from: Entangled (Kindle Edition)
I don't usually write introductions to my reviews, or at least not long ones anyway. But I just found this book so different and almost difficult, difficult to read and difficult to put down. I don't really know what I think about this book,if I could I'd probably write two reviews one good and one bad, but I can't do that so this is a good review because this books isn't a halfway book, I couldn't give it 3 stars, so it has to be 5.
You see when I started this book, I disliked it immensely, I actually put it aside and read another book, and all but forgot about it until it flashed up on my Kindle, and I started reading again. This time I still didn't know what to think, Grace the protagonist was horrible and vulnerable, mean yet also caring. Her best friend Sal, is probably the only normal aspect of her life, the person who keeps her grounded, has a loving caring family and is completely normal. That is until Sal gets pregnant and then Grace turns into the protector and the advice, which results in a huge argument between her and Sal. All this is told by Grace who is writing this from a white room where she is being held captive by loving Ethan. Confusing or what? So that was the bit I found difficult to read, not difficult as in challenging, I just had to force my self to read it. But then Grace meets Nathan who I loved, until the ending, which although I'd guessed it already still gave me a shock.
So I loved this book, I think.. I found it confusing, yet loveable. I'd highly recommend.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wow that was emotional!, 20 Nov 2011
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
This book will haunt you long after you finsh the final page.

This story sucks you in from the first page and its not long before you can see whats coming (in a good way), I found myself both desperate to read on but dreading what was going to happen. Grace is telling the story and as a reader you can see all the signs she misses, this story truly is an emotional rollercoaster, stirring a stange combination of feelings in you as you read it I both loved and hated it, both wanted to give Grace a hug and sympathy one minute and a slap the next but somehow you find yourself drawn into Grace, happy when she is and crushed when she is. It was exhausting! The ending is perfect even though you will find youself wishing it was different ;)

I would only recommended it to older teens but a great read non the less.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Promising new addition to the Young Adult genre, 1 April 2012
This review is from: Entangled (Kindle Edition)
We begin the story with Grace, she is locked in a room and she doesn't know where she is and/or if she'll ever get out. The first sentence propels us directly into the action wondering why Grace wanted to commit suicide in the first place and why has she now been kidnapped. In her room, there is only a bed and a table with paper and pens. The only thing she can do is write, thus giving the reader an insight into her head. We go back in time as she scribbles the words on the page about her past and as she tells us what happens with her mysterious kidnapper Ethan.

As she writes, we realise that Grace is not the easiest person to love or to care for. Even though she is bright and has good results at school, she is stuck into a very self-destructive spiral (alcohol, one-night stands, cutting...) and doesn't let others help nor see she is suffering. Grace has very bad relations with her (mostly absent) mother and her best friend Sal is there for her only up to a certain point. She meets Nat and he seems perfect (gentle, caring, interesting) but Grace is constantly thinking that she doesn't deserve someone that good.

I won't dwell on the kidnapping part, but the story is mainly about Grace and about all the events building up throughout the years leading her to want to put an end to her life. It is about how she has been consistently let down by everyone, including herself. She functions as a human being but she is very far from being happy, she has been cutting herself for years and getting drunk and going out with many boys/men regularly.

This is what I liked the most about the book, it is about someone you wouldn't want as the hero of a book. Someone you probably wouldn't care for, had you seen her in the street. But you realise that there is so much more to her than meets the eye. Grace is worth reading about and her voice is so unique and yet so universal that you will not want to forget her.

The book is written in Grace's point of view in the present tense, it is very haunting because we don't know how it might end. The dialogues and situations in the book are very real. If I go out on Saturday night I will probably see girls doing the same things Grace does in the book, the same if I listen to some high school girls talking on the bus. Cat Clarke creates characters very realistic in their personalities and actions. I could picture them talking in my mind the whole time, I didn't for one second read it as a moralistic tale written by an adult pretending to be a teenager. The story is very down-to-earth and realistic and yet it keeps the reader captivated the whole time. I couldn't put the book down before finishing it and I have been thinking about Grace ever since, wanting to hold her in my arms and simply listen to her. If you care enough to look, then you will see the scars, and not only the visible ones. It is a very profound story and as Grace is a very complex character we come to discover at the same time as she discovers herself, the different layers of the book unfold progressively.

I should probably add that the book is also hilarious! Grace's voice is very clear and distinctive and she has the funniest retorts. You will be surprised to laugh out loud regularly while reading this book. And even though the subject is quite dark, the book is not depressing, on the contrary, there is a positive note.

I really loved this book. Cat Clarke writes on such a sensitive subject with a very original approach and an endearing voice. You will not forget Grace. At times I was laughing out loud and at others I was moved to tears. Cat is a very promising new addition to the young adult genre.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars mystifying, gripping with more than a hint of real life events!, 8 Feb 2012
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
Entangled is one of the most confusing yet gripping novels that I've read recently - and considering I run a bookshop, this isn't something I'd say lightly! Meet Grace, our 17 year old protagonist whose teenage life has had its fair shares of ups and downs, loss, temper tantrums, fear, pain, laughter and love. At this point in her story, though, we're hitting the nitty gritty of friendship (how deep can it run before you hit the final block?), first love (how do you know when you really love someone?) and the realisation that all those around you aren't necessarily how YOU see them ....

Grace wakes in a room that is white. All white. The walls, door, table and chair, bed, her clothes, the bathroom, the boards blocking the window, white white white and my first thought was, 'mental asylum surely?' especially as we've learnt from the back cover that she had tried to commit suicide.

But no, her story is far more complex than that - the gentle but eerie Ethan who cares for her, with food, fresh clean clothes, and a listening ear. Sal, the best friend with whom she fought so savagely. Her Dad, whom she misses terribly - but what happened to him? Nat, Devon, Sophie, her Mum - all inexplicably entangled in the sad, sad story of her life - but is she really remembering them correctly?

Faced with reams of white paper, and a stack of biro's, Grace sits to recall her life on paper, and as she does so, she realises that things aren't always what they seem, and in the heat of the moment, far easier to misunderstand ....

What can I say without revealing anything of the twists and turns in this novel. I'll admit I was confused by the ending in a way, but at the same time, it made sense. I certainly identified with many of the events, and emotions caught up here - and would challenge anyone 15+ (I'm 26) not to, either in what they're going through now - or in recollection of their teenage years. Take the chance. Read it.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compulsive read, 4 Jan 2011
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
Entangled grabs you from the first page and doesn't let go - I couldn't put it down. Grace's voice is strong and true, it keeps you turning the pages to find out more. This is a fantastic debut from Cat Clarke, I look forward to reading more from her in the future.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sad and a little confusing, 21 Dec 2011
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
I knew very little about this book when I picked it up except for the fact it has a rocking cover, the blurb on the back and the girl has the same hair colour as me! This book was nothing like I was expecting and it took me on a journey I didn't expect.

Grace has decided to take her life. Before she goes through with it in a children's playground she speaks to a stranger on the swings and before she knows it she is being taken into a van and then she wakes up in a white room with a bed, a desk, pens and a stack of paper. After a while Grace starts to write her life story not knowing how long she is going to be in the room or if she will ever get out of it alive.

This whole book is a mystery from the start and the more we learn about Grace the more we realise that her life is troubled and more messed up than even she knew. I was unsure if I liked Grace. To me she seemed selfish, right from the start when she was considering suicide I took a disliking to her. After reading the book and hearing her story I am not sure if she is just selfish or incredibly damaged.

Grace also has a problem with self harming. To me there was no glamour involved in this and you could clearly see that after a while even grace knew she had a problem. This problem is one that Grace struggles to control and for us helps to see how she views herself. I used to know a girl who also struggled with this, to a much lesser extent as far as I knew. In a way this book helped me see that there was very little I could do for her besides be her friend.

For the whole book we are as clueless as Grace is about what is going on. Why is she locked in this room? Who is Ethan and is he helping her or keeping her captive. Information is trickled to us slowly so that we are kept as much in the dark as Grace is, however I personally felt there were lots of questions left unanswered that I really wanted to know the answer to. The writing felt raw, powerful and gritty and that was what kept me on the journey.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Most Amazing Books I've Read All Year, 7 Aug 2011
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
Grace Carlyle is damaged, scarred - and not just on the outside, where there are the criss-crossing scars from her cutting. She's not perfect and she knows it. But when she wakes up in a room, help captive by a boy she doesn't even know, she needs to find out WHY. With a pen and paper, she tells her story, her life. Her mistakes, her successes. Her friends, boyfriend, family. She needs to figure it out, unravel the mess that is her life. She needs to figure out WHY. Fast.
Wow. Just... wow. This story of kidnappers and flashbacks could have so easily gone wrong. Yet, everything was perfect; it was put together in a way that made me want to just sit and read and never put it down. I was instantly drawn in, hooked from the very first sentence: "I met Ethan on the night I was planning to kill myself. Pretty inconvenient, when you think about it". It was amazingly written, the characters all felt real and so did Grace's pain. She was amazing. This book was amazing. I adored it.
Grace was a wonderfully strong character, her voice so real. She was the driving force, the life, the power. She could easily have been `that girl'. The one who is pathetic and suicidal and clingy, but she wasn't. She was real. She was human. I loved her for her faults, loved that she wasn't perfect. And more than anything, I loved her strength. Grace was brilliant. Yes, she was damaged, broken, but I didn't pity her or look down on her: I hurt for her. I just loved that she could be sarcastic and almost light-hearted, considering the position she was in. She was just incredible! Warm, ironic, stubborn. She was refreshing and one of my favourite heroines, plus she reminded me what I loved most about fiction and writing.
Grace had issues with her mother, which I found particularly interesting. Ever since her dad died, Grace's mother couldn't be bothered. She didn't notice that Grace was cutting or drinking, nothing. I had a theory behind this sudden disinterest - one which proved to be accurate - but all Grace could see was a mother that didn't care. Which is why her friendship with BF Sal was so important to her. The two completely relied on one another. Their relationship was sweet, and meant everything to Grace. Which was one of the problems...
I can honestly say I couldn't guess where the plot was going. I couldn't guest the twists, the turns, nothing, nada. I just could not figure out - no matter how hard I tried - who Ethan was! It took me forever to get even an idea, and by then I couldn't be bothered to think, I was so absorbed in the story. I loved that Grace's life, her kidnapping aside, was so realistic, so relatable. Somehow, Cat Clarke took every day - for some of us, anyway - occurrences and changed them, made them surreal. I just could not stop reading. There was humour, happiness and love, fear, confusion and sadness - such bone crushing sadness that it made my eyes fill with tears. I felt absolutely everything Grace did, like they were my own feelings. It hurt. I cried.
One of the most amazing, unpredictable, incredible, beautiful books I've read in a long time. Cat Clarke is an author to look out for! I know I'll be on the lookout for all of her future books.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, 5 April 2011
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This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
I read the reviews and was so impressed I thought I would buy it and try for it myself. I was blown away , I had to finsh the book in one day as it grabbed me and glued me to the book. The story is about love ,friendship , hurt and about trusting no one.I was smiling one bit and crying at the next . Grace's voice is clear, strong and beautiful and I cannot wait to hear more of this author.

Buy this book ! you will NOT regret it...
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars entangled, 23 Mar 2012
This review is from: Entangled (Paperback)
when I first started to read this book, I though, wow, what a great writer. At first i thought Grace was in a mental hospital, then that she had been rescued by Ethan, an angel and forced to face and come to terms with her life before being returned to the land of the living, and as time went on, I thought she was dead and in purgatory. (I like to try and work out the plot from the beginning - sometimes I succeed - but in this case I didn't)
In spite of the promising beginning, a little over half way through the book, the obvious strain between Sal and Nat began to get boring. The tension would mount, but just as I was waiting for the climax with growing excitement, it petered out. Again and again the whole tension, build up, aproach to climax and then let down was repeated. I found myself, for the first time, skipping over sections. Again I was sure i had guessed the cause of the behaviour of Sal and Nat and was waiting for Grace to catch up. Again I was wrong (But I thought, had my suspicions been right,the story would have been stronger.)
I found it unlikely that Sal would have been so secretive with her best friend and confidant,who was her only support, especially since Grace had been truthful about her own embarrassing secret. There didn't seem to be any reason for her reticence.
Grace wasn't a particularly likeable character - but she was a typical teenager, full of angst and anger at past experiences in her life.
I was disapointed in the ending as well. Not that I dislike open endings - just not so open.
Otherwise it was extremely well written, a very good plot, a promising start, but the second half not quite living up to expectations.
It is a good book, but with a bit more effort, it could have been great!
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Entangled
Entangled by Cat Clarke (Paperback - 6 Jan 2011)
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