Schasm – Shari J. Ryan
A good cover goes a long way in whether I am willing to read a book. That’s the honest truth, even if I am knowingly bypassing other great reads up. I believe a good cover says a lot about the author while also telling me a little bit about his/her tastes. Schasm’s cover appeals to my artistic side and when my sister recommended it to me, I decided to give it a try.
The story revolves around Chloe, a 19-year-old who is imprisoned by her mother. Chloe is also a mind drifter. She fades out of reality and enters a whole other world inside her mind. It is there that she meets Alex, a beautiful blue eyed man who sees the beauty in Chloe even when she struggles to see it herself. One might call it severe daydreaming, but it is more than that. When Chloe’s monster of a mother commits her to a mental institution after Chloe injures herself while in a drift, secrets her mother never wanted her to know come to light. The trouble is, Chloe doesn’t know what is real and what is not real. As Chloe unravels under the observation of doctors who may not have her best interests at heart, she struggles with maintaining a sense of reality while holding onto Alex, who may not just be a figment of her imagination. The reader takes a spin down the rabbit hole with Chloe as she struggles with the roller-coaster her mind has become.
I was surprised at how much I loved this book. I honestly breezed through it so fast, struggling to shut the light off at night. There were twists and turns throughout the entire novel and secrets that kept me on my toes. I never knew what was coming and I love when I am a surprised reader.
Considering that I feel so many writers have become robots, creating the same type of stories for YA readers since the Twilight craze, I very much appreciated this psychological thriller. It doesn’t copy cat anything mainstream I have personally read so far.
I appreciated the complexity that Ryan created regarding the relationship between mother and daughter. Chloe is an emotionally abused child. Held hostage by her “condition” or every other synonym her mother uses. The characters created in this novel are very detailed and deep with many issues, but there’s a heavy focus on how a person can feel alienated and misunderstood by their family—which I believe many readers can relate to. So many of us have something that makes us unique that not everyone “gets,” and I thought the mind drifting was a unique concept to bring that to the forefront.
I highly recommend this book to any YA reader who enjoys a good mind craze. You will definitely be left with some questions, but there are sequels to follow and like all sequels, secrets will continue to be revealed.
You can find the book on Amazon in Kindle for $4.99 or paperback for $13.85. Watch for the sequel, Fissure Free, slated for release May 15.
Disclaimer: The founder of this blog, Katrina, is the editor on this series, although she did not edit this specific title. Her relationship with the author in no way impacted my review. –Sheilah