Elizabeth B's Reviews > Red Heart Tattoo

Red Heart Tattoo by Lurlene McDaniel
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's review
May 15, 2012

liked it
Read in May, 2012

Oddly, I didn't feel as emotional as I expected reading this book. The plotline alone gave me chills so I was confused when the book itself left me with no measurable feelings, either good or bad. The characters were typical, average teens almost to the point of cliches. The good girl, the jock, the moping girl, the troubled girl, the bad boy with a heart of gold...they were all there. I think perhaps this lack of original or creative characters is what made me unable to relate to the circumstances in the novel. They just weren't unique enough to care about.

That said, the story itself is a good one. It unfolds easily enough, layer by layer. None of the "surprises" are really surprises and most readers will know the questions long before the author admits them. That made it plod along a bit: there's no suspense when you already know both the ending and the answers to the questions. But it wasn't so tedious I didn't continue reading. It all came together much too neatly in the end for my tastes but many will enjoy the complete closure the story gives.

Overall, this is a quick read that will appeal to some teens. It tackles some heavy topics but really only in passing...none are really dealt with in depth so it won't put off the less serious readers. It is not a dark novel (as one might expect) but more a reporting of events almost. Reluctant readers will disengage from this story early on and give up but other readers will likely power through if simply to find out if they are right about how it will end (and they will feel vindicated when they are proven right).

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