Expected publication: May 8th 2012 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux BYR
//Amazon//B&N//The Book Depository//
Mia Price is a lightning addict. She’s survived countless strikes, but her craving to connect to the energy in storms endangers her life and the lives of those around her.
Los Angeles, where lightning rarely strikes, is one of the few places Mia feels safe from her addiction. But when an earthquake devastates the city, her haven is transformed into a minefield of chaos and danger. The beaches become massive tent cities. Downtown is a crumbling wasteland, where a traveling party moves to a different empty building each night, the revelers drawn to the destruction by a force they cannot deny. Two warring cults rise to power, and both see Mia as the key to their opposing doomsday prophecies. They believe she has a connection to the freak electrical storm that caused the quake, and to the far more devastating storm that is yet to come.
Struck is a very easy book to immerse yourself in. The world is so believable and so easy to imagine, because if you get past the lightning part, it's not that unrealistic. An earthquake that's destroyed Los Angeles and turned it into a place that needs to be rebuilt so badly; a place where people scavenge the houses of the dead and people pay hundreds of dollars for one pill bottle. Jennifer Bosworth does an amazing job at portraying that kind of world. It's definitely my favorite part of the book.
Mia wants to trust the enigmatic and alluring Jeremy when he promises to protect her, but she fears he isn’t who he claims to be. In the end, the passion and power that brought them together could be their downfall. When the final disaster strikes, Mia must risk unleashing the full horror of her strength to save the people she loves, or lose everything.
Mia is a kind of character I've never seen before. She doesn't just happen to get struck by lightning multiple times - she likes it. But that's not the only thing I love about her. Mia is definitely what I would consider a kick-ass heroine. She's not perfect and she's definitely kind of weird, but she's not weak and she knows what she has to do to protect her family.
The storyline of Struck is something I haven't really seen before, but I have to admit that all of the talk about God and religion put me off a bit. You would have no idea that religion was even involved at all just by reading the blurb, and sure, I wasn't surprised because someone had warned me about it, but if I hadn't been warned, I would have been very surprised. Prophet and his followers - Apostles, I believe they're called - believe that the storm that destroyed LA was God's doing. And let me tell you, they're all extremely intense about it. I love that they're bad guys who think they're actually doing good in the world; it gives them a kind of depth that you don't get from a lot of the "villains" in YA. But the religion got to be a little too much for me. It's a personal preference of mine, and it kind of took away a lot of my enjoyment during this book.
Struck also has that aspect a lot of us readers dread - insta!love. The insta!love in Struck is a little more enjoyable than it can be in other books, simply because Jeremy is a character I really like, but when you think about it, Struck takes place all in less than a week, if I remember right. Mia and Jeremy meet and somehow end up basically in love by the end of the book. Jeremy himself is definitely an intriguing character, and I can't wait to learn more about him, but I wish the relationship between him and Mia hadn't developed so quickly.
Overall: Struck is unique in all sorts of ways. A lightning addict in a world that is so easy to imagine because it's built up so well. It's full of action and amazing characters that keep you totally interested. If you can handle all the religious mentions that occur in the second half of the book, this is definitely something I'd recommend. 3.5 stars.