Panic by Lauren Oliver
Panic began as so many things do in Carp, a dead-end town of 12,000 people in the middle of nowhere: because it was summer, and there was nothing else to do.
Heather never thought she would compete in Panic, a legendary game played by graduating seniors, where the stakes are high and the payoff is even higher. She’d never thought of herself as fearless, the kind of person who would fight to stand out. But when she finds something, and someone, to fight for, she will discover that she is braver than she ever thought.
Dodge has never been afraid of Panic. His secret will fuel him, and get him all the way through the game, he’s sure of it. But what he doesn't know is that he’s not the only one with a secret. Everyone has something to play for.
For Heather and Dodge, the game will bring new alliances, unexpected revelations, and the possibility of first love for each of them—and the knowledge that sometimes the very things we fear are those we need the most.
Publishes in US: March 4th 2014 by HarperCollins
Genre: YA Contemp
Source: Harper Teen
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I wanted to read Panic because I enjoyed Lauren Oliver's other contemporary and even though this one sounds different, I liked the direction it was going in. The idea of this big game and stunts, and where these two characters could face such things and possibly fall in love along the way intrigued me. Which I have to say, when reading the synopsis I almost thought that there was a supernatural or dystopian element to the story, but I think that it makes it more realistic, and it is set that it could happen in real life and it wasn't really forced on the kids, but more like a town tradition.
I liked both of the main characters, Heather and Dodge. They had secrets, and reasons why they were entering the games, on why they needed the money. Both of their families have their own backstories and play into the reasons they are playing and want to win. They are both sisters as well, and I loved the individual bonds, and how they grew and changed through the story.
The games though really shocked me. What they planned and the extremely dangerous element to them. They went over the previous years' deaths and that made me think that there was an even higher risk to this year's game. I think that these types of stunts though are def not out of character of a small town summer with nothing for the teens to do. I do think that the planning system and that everyone pays into the pot is kinda unrealistic, but I went with it for the sake of the story.
It was def high adventure and had me scared for what my characters might face next as the group of players gets smaller and smaller. It had me glued to the pages, and I read it quickly, but I don't think this will be one that sticks with me and I think about after, hence the 3.5
I think that Heather really grew and learned a lot through the games as well as through the things that she had to deal with at home. I love the side plot with the lady she gets a job with Anne. Anne has a farm of sorts and rescues animals and hires Heather to help her. The bond that they form is special and I appreciated reading about it and how it developed.
The ending worked out pretty well and matched what I expected from the book. It wrapped things up and even gave up a glimpse at the near future of the characters.
My question to you, my lovely readers:
Would you compete for high cash in stunts?