2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: Panic (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
After the spangles and wonderment of Before I Fall, I was so disappointed with Panic. I really wanted to love it and be drawn into it in the same way I was with Before I Fall but it just didn't happen. I am not a teenager, the target audience, but I have read dozens of teenage and young adult books to know what to expect and what a good one is.
Initially I found the characters difficult to keep track of with weird names - Dodge, Diggin, Zev (surely you would only name a dog something like that, not your own baby !) and the only Delaney I've ever heard of was in a song and he had a donkey ! Names aside, I couldn't really engage with any of them, even Heather who we were supposed to like. They were all self obsessed, thoughtless kids and even more stupid for playing the devastatingly dangerous game of Panic.
We basically follow four teenagers, Heather, Dodge, Diggin and Nat, through the school summer holidays who take part or are involved in the game known as Panic. Each round eliminates several failures, either because they don't complete the set task or are too slow, and by the end of the summer the two finalists are head to head with Joust - each drives a car at full pelt head on towards each other without veering away. The winner gets the pot of money earned from the entrance fee.
The writing style is alright, is heavily American with many words and phrases that I didn't quite understand - riding bitch is a new one to me. At times the story was mundane and even dreary with lots of depressing undertones. It's not a great piece of literature but I suppose it was never meant to be. The over the top dangerous games I found too incredible and those games attempted by troubled kids with weaknesses I found unbelievable.