The Compulsive Reader: Circle Nine by Anne Heltzel

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Circle Nine by Anne Heltzel

When Abby wakes after being pulled from a burning building, she discovers that she doesn't remember anything about herself. It's Sam who saves he, who helps remind her who she is. They live in a cozy little cave away from the world and all they need is each other. But when Sam's secrets threaten Abby's happiness, she begins to ask questions. The more curious she gets, the more she slowly begins to remember details about her life before the fire. Reality and fantasy have blended together in Abby's mind, and she is forced to decide what in her life is real.

Circle Nine is a dark tale that will capture your attention from the very beginning. Abby's life is a mystery, and she clings to the things Sam tells her. Her journey is both mental and emotional as she struggles to unbury the truth in her memories and disassociate her feelings for Sam with those of safety and comfort. Sam isn't ever a character that readers can trust, but he does have his moments where he is almost likable. Abby's feelings for him also complicate his role in the story, making for some dramatic scenes. Abby's search for answers is gradual and interspersed with memories of her family, which make her eventual discovery of the truth of what happened the night of the fire tragic and emotional. Though the reader will be able to deduce what Abby struggles to learn a bit quicker than the protagonist, Heltzel's writing is measured and intense, and she has a few little twists at the very end that will keep readers hooked. Circle Nine is a heart-rending and perfectly paced novel with darker tones that provides an interesting view on some very important social issues. While the ending isn't neat and perfect, it feels right and the conclusion will haunt you.

Cover Comments: I just love this cover so much! The way the brightness of the forest stands out against the black background is very striking, and it makes you want to lean in for a closer look.

Review copy provided by author.

This one is now available! The e-book is on sale for $2.99!


Blue Reader Gal said...

Sounds like a good read to me! :)

Gina @ My Precious said...

Great review. I really enjoyed this one myself. I wanted to race to the end so I could find out what really happened to Abby. It was easy to get through quickly.