Thomas's Reviews > Forbidden

Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma
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Aug 07, 11

bookshelves: five-stars, own-physical, 2nd-favorites, read-for-high-school-book-club, young-adult, romance, realistic-fiction
Read from July 30 to 31, 2011

Love is right, incest is wrong. But can the two exist within the same relationship?

I love books that make me think, and I love books that make me feel. Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma made me do both. It's an incredibly powerful story about Lochan and Maya, siblings born only thirteen months apart. Though they are only seventeen and sixteen respectively, they act as the adults of their household: taking care of three younger siblings, managing financial affairs, all on top of completing their schoolwork too. Falling in love only complicates matters - their relationship is sinful yet impossible to stop, and they will do whatever it takes to keep it hidden while allowing it continue...

Incest. Incest, incest, incest. Incest is one of those dirty, taboo topics that are reserved for quick condemnation and hushed conversations. It takes some serious courage to write a book like Forbidden, and Tabitha Suzuma managed to not only make it thought-provoking, but emotionally moving as well.

Lochan and Maya's romance was beautiful. The pacing and execution of the plot was perfect, as it developed the bond between the two but did not overshadow other aspects of the story. Their feelings of doubt, pain, and passion are so realistic and raw that you'll end up cheering for this couple despite society's predetermined bias against them.

This book raises a plethora of potential discussion questions. Is it really wrong? If it's true and consensual love, should incest still be considered dirty and disgusting? Also, if Lochan and Maya had been raised in a "normal" household, would they still have turned out the way they did? Or would they have grown up and fallen in love with people other than each other?

To be honest, I'm still thinking about this book and the puzzles it presents. One thing I do believe for sure is that Lochan and Maya's love was just as valid as any other couples', if not more so. And yet, they are brother and sister... but does that even matter?

Forbidden has made me reevaluate my beliefs regarding an issue that I always held the same stance on, and I'm sure it'll challenge many readers in the same way. Tabitha Suzuma is a talented author I now have my eye on and I'm looking forward to reading more books written by her.

*cross-posted from my blog, the quiet voice.
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Comments (showing 1-13 of 13) (13 new)

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Wendy Darling One of the very best things literature can do is open your mind and your heart. Great review, Thomas--I'm so glad this touched you.


Laura Beautiful review Thomas! I couldn’t agree more. Maya & Lochan’s just broke my heart! This story will stay with me. So powerful!


message 3: by Wesley (new)

Wesley Very nice Thomas.


Thomas Very very true Wendy. Thank you everyone... I have to also thank all my Goodreads friends for their reviews of Forbidden, if not for them I probably wouldn't have picked this one up. What a mistake that would have been.


message 5: by Devina (last edited Aug 08, 2011 10:59AM) (new) - added it

Devina Wow.I've haven't read it but I haven't come across a book like this one before as well.Incest is indeed a very touchy subject and it gets me wondering,is it so bad but then they way society tells us otherwise,it's something we've come to realize that was 'forbidden'

Frankly,I don't know what to think...should I be cheering for Lochan and Maya...or against them?


Stephen I love it too Thomas! I'm half way through.


Thomas Devina, read it and find out! If you're already interested I think you'll love actually reading the book.

And Stephen, please share your thoughts on it once you're done. It's an amazing book. (:


Kamae Acejo *Nuff said. I love this book too! Truly deserves 5 stars! :-bd


Thomas Agreed!


Thomas For your first problem I feel like you could definitely do your best to conceal it from your roommate; however, if that doesn't work out, you could always disarm her by simply stating you've read a bunch of great reviews and you just wanted to check it out. Either way I wouldn't waste time on those who would judge you as a person based only on the books you read (and Forbidden is a fabulous book).

Could you try to contact the public library to see if they have any clue on whether the book will become available? If not you could wait it out for a bit and then buy it if no progress is made.


Thomas Hm, well, I guess you have to go over in your mind what a "book like this" is. Forbidden is a beautiful book and while the subject matter seem scandalous it does not detract from the quality of the book at all. Keep that in mind when you introduce it, perhaps.


Pirzha-Loves-Reading I'm halfway through, I love your review! It can lead to a good debate :)


Thomas I see your 4-star rating now, I'm glad you enjoyed the book! It's definitely one that can lead to discussion.


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