I will be frank here and say I did not enjoy Abandon by Meg Cabot. This novel gave off the impression of being a retelling or spin on the Persephone/Hades myth (and it sort of is) but it definitely was not what I was expecting and lacked the romantic chemistry and intensity I thought this kind of story would give. In short, I found the main character to be irritating and thoughtless, the male love-interest barely there, and the writing style lacking in coherency.
Pierce, our main character, died at the age of fifteen, a year before the novel begins and ever since her near death experience, life for her has been difficult. She does poorly in school, is anti-social, and lands herself in trouble she can clearly avoid. It also doesn't help that her almost permanently dying led to her parents’ divorce and an incident at Pierce's old school leads to her being kicked out. Now Pierce is living in Isla Huesos (her mother's childhood home) and attending a new school and trying to make new friends but Isla Huesos was really where all of Pierce's problems began. Because here, years ago, in a cemetery when she was five year's old is where she met John. John who brought a dead bird back to life to appease a little girl, John who she met by a lake-shore in the Underworld when she died the year before, and John who she tricked and escaped from so she could come back to life. Now that sounds like the premise of story that should have you glued to the pages as it fills you to the brim with a heart-stopping scenes and out of this world story telling but in all honesty this story was a disappointing narrative.
Pierce has a tendency for getting herself into trouble whether it be by accidentally tripping on her scarf and falling into a pool or not quickly leaving a shop when the owner starts taking an unwanted interest in her necklace. She also has a tendency for picking on the male lead, John. I can't say too much without giving away spoilers but John does everything he can to protect Pierce and she constantly blames him for the outcome of what was initially her fault or something that wasn't his fault at all. She's not very nice to him to be honest and because of this I can't harp on him for his grumpy, mopy attitude whenever he's in a scene with her because I spent most of the book cursing her from my bed. Not to say that John makes up for Pierce's misgivings, he's not always very clear when he talks to her leaving her to jump to conclusions about his intentions and near the end of the book where he was having more of an actual presence he was becoming too controlling for my tastes.
Another thing that made it hard for me to read Abandon was the jarring transitions from present day to flash backs, it happens consistently throughout the book and without warning which would always pull me out of a scene as I tried to find my bearings and understand what was going on.
I will admit that Abandon has an interesting concept, retellings always need to have a unique spin and I think this one was distinctive enough to stand out but it just never had what it needed to take off.
I love that the series is slightly based off of the Persephone myth. The characters on the other hand were not the best. Pierce comes off as extremely naive for a seventeen year old. John is a moody vague figure. The story doesn't lead up to them becoming a couple. John is barely there then bam now they love each other. This has potential to be an okay story and i hope the characters relationship grows properly. Not Cabot at her best.