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Paula Morris
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Ruined (Ruined #1)

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  9,230 ratings  ·  1,079 reviews
Rebecca couldn't feel more out of place in New Orleans. She's staying in a creepy house with her aunt, who reads tarot cards. And at the snooty prep school, a pack of filthy-rich girls treat Rebecca like she's invisible. Only gorgeous, unavailable Anton Grey gives Rebecca the time of day, but she wonders if he's got a hidden agenda. Then one night, among the oak trees in L ...more
Paperback, Reprint, 309 pages
Published 2009
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It's early to give up, I know, but I've got a bad feeling about this one. Here's why:

1) It reads more like a middle-grade novel than a teen novel. I don't like middle grade because there's almost always...

2) ...too much Telling/Not Showing. In fact, I daresay the first 30 pages are an epidemic infodump. BEEP! Big mistake. The first few chapters of any novel are critical...and infodumping is a really risky choice. I don't want to spend those first minutes having everyone tell the heroine why the
Carolyn (Book Chick City)
Ruined is marketed as a ghost story and it is a story about a ghost, but it's not what I expected. It's not scary, or spooky or spine-tingling. It's just about a girl who happens to be a ghost. The plot is quite good and we are introduced to Rebecca, who is the only person (or so she thinks) that can see the ghost, Lisette. They form a friendship, but behind it there is a secret which Rebecca slowly unravels and discovers the truth.

Rebecca is a nice girl, but we don't really get to know her, an
Nikki  Peterson
May 08, 2012 Nikki Peterson rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA Readers
Recommended to Nikki by: My very ownself
Rebecca's Dad has to go to Japan for six months and is going to have to go and stay with her Aunt Claudia. As if leaving New York isn't bad enough, she also has to start prep school. All of the girls are pretty snotty and have a high opinion of themselves, being from the richest familys in New Orleans.

One night Rebecca hears voices and sees several of the girls she goes to school with along with some boys from boys' prep school. She decides to sneak out of the house and see what they are doing
Well it was an interesting one. I loved it from start to finish and it was an interesting look at today's society levels.
At first I was a bit irritated that the South was painted in such a mean way, when Southerners are usually quite nice people. Then again I've never met the high society Southerners like Helena Bowman so I can't know if its that bad or not. But I got over it really quick and loved the way Morris depicts ghosts in this story.
All the characters where rich and believable and it a
Ruined is a creepy, gothic ghost story, the perfect read for the Halloween season. The setting and the entire tone of the book are so eerie! The book is never too scary, but it gives the reader the perfect amount of chills and thrills.

I'm usually much more into characters than settings, but in this story, New Orleans seems like it's own character. I learned so much about the city's history as well as how the upper class live there today. Rebecca is very much involved with the "old families" in t
Like the main character, Rebecca, I knew very little about New Orleans before Katrina. What I did know came from sources like movies, novels, comic books and random historical facts that stuck in my head from American history classes. Pop culture painted a surrealistic view of the city--populated by a people who have lived and thrived on traditions for centuries and Mardi Gras, was the talk of the world. I was intrigued and terrified by the thought of going to the city.

And then Hurricane Katrin
this was a poorly written story that obviously needed to be revised, with hardly any good character. It was like they were all literally ghosts, no emotions whatsoever. I could sum up the book in just a few paragraph's as easy as this;

Great, im moving in with my voodoo aunt, who isnt really my aunt, and ive only met her a few times, wait why do i call her auntie? Im best friends with my twelve year old cousin,and im 16, beat that. So my aunt tells me that people get murdered in the grave yard, a
Katieeoh Lacanlale
Hi! I just posted this review on my blog:

First and foremost, I loved the cover. Its very mysterious and at the same time it tells a dark, witty story. For me I love books that are filled with mystery, horror and suspense. But I never loved books that’s all about vampires and werewolves and fallen angels…whatever. I hate those kind of books. It shifts my mind into something that is so unraveling and simply…weird. I never loved it, just like Twilight, Falle
Ellz Readz
My thoughts...This book can best be described as flavorful. The reader gets tastes of New Orleans history, Mardi Gras excitement, Haitian magic and an old-fashioned ghost story. The main character Rebecca is thrown into post-Katrina New Orleans in a house with a view of the famous Lafayette Cemetery. Curiosity gets the better of her and she finds herself face to face with a real ghost. Her aunt believe in old magic and voo-doo. She gives Rececca several warnings to stay out of the cemetery and o ...more
Christy (TheReaderBee)
Ruined is my very first read by Paula Morris. I was thrilled that it finally came in at the library so I could read it.

The characters are pretty likeable. Of course, there are some you just love to hate anyways. The main character, Rebecca, was pretty likeable. She wants to fit in at her new home and new school, but she really doesn’t seem to care when she doesn’t. I really didn’t see much of a connection between Rebecca and Anton, unfortunately. There’s definitely not a lot of romance in this b
Christina (Reading Thru The Night)
Isn't that cover absolutely gorgeous, if a bit misleading (the ghost in the story is a young black girl and the woman in the picture, well, she doesn't look young or black, does she?)

It being a ghost story wasn't really what pushed me into this purchase, rather it was because the ghost story's setting is New Orleans. I have no ties with NOLA outside of doing the touristy visits. Still, in all of the places that I have travelled, NOLA is the only city that I can still visualize, the only place wh
Peace Love and Reviews
This book made me want to see New Orleans intensely soon.
The description of Garden District made me google the place sooner than you can day "Mardi Gra here I come".

Rebecca Brown's character was likable. She's not the typical 16 year old character that's so desperately wanting to fit in her new surroundings or else she'd probably die of an untimely social death. Its a refreahing changing of yhe typical high schooler climbing the social ladder or the Queen Bee harassing a poor insecure new girl.
I love a good ghost story so maybe my expectations going into this book were too high since I've never read anything by this author before. Needless to say, Ruined was a bit of a let down.

The ingredients are all there. A great setting to facilitate a spooky atmosphere, good historical details, and an unique and well-set up plot with an outcome that wasn't obvious. Despite all of this, there was something missing from the overall story.

Perhaps it was that I didn't find the heroine, Rebecca, symp
If you're a reader that's looking for a teeth grinding, heart pounding, sleep with the lights on ghost story, read no further. You will likely be disappointed by Paula Morris' freshman effort, Ruined. Not that Ruined is a poor book - - far from it. But it's more like a ghost story with less calories and a lighter taste.

Ruined is aimed for the Young Adult audience but it's perfectly acceptable as an adult read as well. This adult enjoyed it thoroughly from page one. And while it's marketed as a
Paula Morris

This great book was a true ghost story. I truly enjoyed reading it. It took place in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. I loved the historical references in the story. They gave an aura of truth to what I was reading. In a nutshell…

Rebecca has been told by her father that he has a 6 month stay in China. They are New Yorkers and Rebecca is not happy about the fact that because of this she must spend the next 6 months with her Aunt Claudia in New Orleans at a private school
Rebbecca is sent to live with her Aunt in New Orleans when her dad has to travel to China for work. She knows no one here and is immediately put off by the snobbish manners of the girls she attends school with. Her only friend is Lisette, a girl she meets in the cemetery. However, it turns out that Lisette is a ghost. She is limited to haunting the cemetery, the Bowman house, and her childhood home until her murder is avenged. This will occur with the end of the curse that was placed on the Bowm ...more
Shiralea Woodhouse
I admit it - I picked up this book because it was set in Louisiana...and even better, in a graveyard in New Orleans. I (being a La. native) have always loved the aboveground cemeteries - there is just something "neat-o" about them! And the author managed to weave in some of the history and culture of N.O. into the story. So I enjoyed the setting. However: although I've never run into the "upper crust" of the garden district, it's a little hard to believe they would be SO snotty...and homicidal ( ...more
Amazing book. Chilling too. I love how the author, Paula Morris, used real settings for this book. I am originally from Louisiana, but I am not originally from New Orleans, and this book basically brings New Orleans to you, just in a haunting way. Rebecca doesn't have a mom, and her dad has to go on a business trip. She can't stay home alone, so she has to move to L.A for a little while with her Aunt Claudia and her Cousin Aurellia. She doesn't really have any friends, and not the best at making ...more
I'm probably being too generous with a 3 star rating, but I did like this book..... Interesting litte story, Welcome to New Orleans: City of Voodoo and Beauty. Of Hurricanes and Hauntings.
Main Character, Rebecca makes a friend in Lisette. One minor little detail, she is a ghost. A ghost who has quite the interesting past. A ghost who has quite a lot of said past that just so happens to have a great deal to do with Rebecca.
Rebecca finds out deep truths about her covered up past.
Emily Togstad
Emily Togstad
I have read the book “Ruined” by Paula Morris. The book starts out talking about a girl named Rebecca Brown. She has moved in with her aunt Claudia. Rebecca is originally from New York, but since her dad went on a business trip to China, she is stuck in New Orleans with her aunt. Rebecca has to go to a new school, and deal with meeting new people. She has problems meeting nice people. There are two very mean rich girls named Helena Bowman and Marianne. The firs
I enjoyed this book, but I didn't love it. I felt things were missing & I wasn't as connected to the characters like I'd of liked. Kinda like a dislocated shoulder, connected but not so connected. I wanted to feel more emotion from the characters, get a feel for who they are, but I was missing that. I also felt there was too much detail in places there shouldn't be, which somewhat distracted me. Also, I couldn't count how many times New Orleans was mentioned, pretty much on every page which ...more
Given the fact that I only read this book because of the cover, I wasn’t really expecting much from it.
Well, my expectations were exceeded.

I can probably count on one hand how many ghost stories I’ve read in my life. And this is a nice little ghostly tale set in New Orleans, a perfect little volume to curl up with when it’s cloudy and cold outside. Which is exactly what I did with it, and so maybe my feelings toward this little novel have been affected by the giant blizzard, but I really liked
Kat Heckenbach
There were parts of this novel I would have rated four stars, but overall I couldn't quite push the full rating up. The writing was good, and the main character was well-developed. But the other characters never really came to life for me and the ending was both predictable and rushed.

I thought the concept was good--a ghost story set in New Orleans. Not that ghosts in New Orleans are that original ;), but using that for a YA novel is! It was refreshing to read a YA book with a more classic voice
Emily Duncan

I'd had my eye on this book for quite some time after seeing it at the bookstore. The cover is both appealing and intriguing at the same time and i hoped that the story inside would be the same. Safe to say i wasn't disappointed.
Now, i'm not a girl whose favourite place in the world is the South. The last ghost story i read that was set in New Orleans was not one that i enjoyed a great deal. Of course, that one was written for a different audience and was based in a very different part of New O
Definitely a page turner. The writing is very concise and accessible and I found the story to be very intruiging and hard to put down! The story takes place in New Orleans, one of my favorite cities in the U.S. and is about ghosts, which I loved. I only wish the story of Anton and Rebecca were more in depth...actually; it would have been nice to get to know all the characters more. I felt I only caught a glimpse of each character and their stories. Aside from that though, the author obviously kn ...more
When Rebecca’s father needs to travel out of the country on business for several months, he has no other choice but to leave her with her aunt Claudia and cousin Aurelia. She is none to happy about this - leaving the comforts of her home in New York City to live in post-Katrina New Orleans, where she is to start a new school for the reminder of the school year.

Upon her arrival, her aunt warns her to stay away from the cemetery across the road from their house. But Lafayette Cemetery doesn’t seem
Ruined reminded me of Elizabeth Chandler's books, new girl comes to town and there is something sinister going on, someone is up to no good and the new girl is right in the middle of it.

In Ruined Rebecca is the new girl and at her new school there are mean girls and there is a cute guy that lives in her neighborhood that just so happens to know these mean girls because they grew up together and their familes have known each other their whole lives. Rebecca meets a girl named Lisette (I love that
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kayla P
Kayla Palos

Ruined by: Paula Morris

Ruined is about this girl named Rebecca who lives with her dad in New York. Ever since her mom died he has been very sad. Well once he gets this job opportunity in California, he can’t bring his daughter. He send her off to live with her Aunt Claudia in New Orleans. She has 2 daughters named Aurelia and Marilyn, they are the same age as Rebecca. One of the things that Aunt Claudia warns Rebecca is that she can never go into the Lafayette cemetery acro
Rebecca is uprooted from her NYC home and moved to New Orleans while her father is working in China. Although she likes the people she is staying with, she really is not crazy about New Orleans or her new school which is full or snobs with family histories that go back to the beginning of New Orleans. She is, however, fascinated by the cemetery across the street from her new temporary home. When she sneeks into the cemetery one night to spy on some of the kids from school she meets a mysterious ...more
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4DRAKE: Ruined 1 6 Mar 12, 2014 07:17AM  
Mad Readers Book ...: Book 1: Ruined by Paula Morris 1 15 Jan 29, 2013 05:01PM  
Halloween, horror lovers group... 1 52 Aug 03, 2009 01:35PM  
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Paula Morris, a novelist and short story writer of English and Maori descent, was born in New Zealand. For almost a decade she worked in the record business in London and New York. She now lives in New Orleans, where she teaches creative writing at Tulane University.

Paula's first novel, Queen of Beauty, won best first work of fiction at the 2003 Montana New Zealand Book Awards. Hibiscus Coast, a l
More about Paula Morris...
Dark Souls Unbroken (Ruined, #2) Rangatira Queen of Beauty Hibiscus Coast

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“The past doesn't go away. You just can't see it anymore.” 17 likes
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