Seriously one of the best books I’ve read in a while!
This book took me on a beautiful journey. It moved me, took my breath away and kept me up all night. It was a well-written, powerful, and deeply moving YA story that absolutely broke the mold and was unlike anything I’d ever read. It blew me away! READ IT!
This is not your typical romance novel where girl meets boy and they just fall in love. Yes, this book has a beautiful love story, but its also about so. much. more.
Its about learning the true value of life, about the price of ignorance, the weight of a self-less action, and the beauty of love.
This was one of those wonderful books that came to my attention very suddenly about 2 weeks ago. Literally, my inbox was full of glowing recommendations for it and I just knew that I had to drop everything and read it. Best decision I ever made!! Something about the idea of it just made my heart race. I swear I had butterflies even before I started reading.
It literally kept me up reading until 5:00 AM. I kept telling myself I was going to put it down and finish it the next day but I could. not. stop. turning. the. pages.
Hmmm, so what’s it about? Its about Sophie Price.
Sophie Price is vain. She is spoiled, filthy rich, with work obsessed parents who care only about the ‘appearance’ of a healthy family. She is hurt and angry on the inside. She uses, manipulates and discards friends, boys, everyone. She takes drugs, parties hard, and finds that she just can’t break out of the mold.
“Freedom is just that. Absolutely no restrictions. I abandoned myself to every whim I felt. Every want I fulfilled and every disire was quenched. I wanted for nothing.
But everything changes the night her party is crashed by cops and, being on her second drug offence, her father arranges to have her sentenced to six months volunteer work at an orphanage in Uganda.
Scared out of her mind, thrown into a completely opposite life from anything she’s ever known, she is faced with a whole new world that will change her for ever.
The whole book is told through Sophie’s eyes and despite my love for alternating POVs, I found that this worked perfectly for the story. She was a very intriguing character who, despite her flaws and behavior, was not a ditz or shallow or stupid. She had simply taken several of the wrong turns in life and also, despite the wealth and opulence she grew up around, was deeply affected by the lack of familial love in her life. She wasn’t abused or anything. But this book really shows the damage that comes from a simple lack of care and love. It brought a whole new meaning to her vanity. Her looks meant everything to her because it brought her adoration from everyone, which was the closest thing she had ever come to love.
“I stood in front of the mirror and took a good hard look. I was as bare as I could make myself, no make up with wet, stringy hair. I hated to look at myself in this state. I didn’t feel real. I felt too exposed and that made me exceedingly nervous, but I made myself look that morning. I memorized that girl. That girl was the real me. Frightened. Worthless. A terrible friend. Terrible daughter. Well educated but so limited in ideas worth having. Beautiful yet repulsive… And finally honest.”
Fisher Amelie did a phenomenal job of instantly transporting you into Sophie’s life. I was right there with her every page of the book. I smiled, laughed, cried a little, fell in love, and felt her growth every step of the way.
I did love the book from the start, but the story is told in such a way that the more I read, the more strongly I connected to the story. My feelings just grew and grew till it just felt like my heart was going to burst.
Oh, and the guy? Right. Yes, the guy. Ian – or ‘Dingane’ as the kids called him. I literally loved him from his first line. Their first meeting was just SO powerful. I. FELT. It.
“It was like my body knew instantly that he was mine and that I was his.”
He was take-your-breath-away gorgeous. Blunt. Honest. And saw right through her. And the more we learned about his back story too, the more I loved him…. oh, and he cleared the bugs for her!! When you read the scene, I promise it’ll melt your heart a little 😛
About Uganda and the orphanage. *deep breath*. Ok. I am mostly aware what is happening in the world. I read the news. I see the headlines and the pictures. But this was different. So. So. Different. This brought the horrors of what was going on to light in a way I can’t even tell you. My heart broke into a million pieces for those kids. The word “horrors” seems too gentle for what I mean. I don’t think there is a word strong enough 🙁
My heart bled for those beautiful innocent children who had everything but their lives and their spirit so cruelly and heartlessly stolen from them and yet still sang songs every morning, smiled and found the beauty in life.
“And what is there to be joyful about?”… Another burst of silent tears streamed down.
“Life, Sophie. They still live. They breathe, they love each other, they find joy in the world around them for no other reason than because they are children. They are resiliant. They will always rise above. Always.”
I loved watching how Sophie, who had never known real love, grew, changed, and opened every part of heart to these kids and to their cause.
I loved watching her and Ian/Dingane fall in love. Ohhh their chemistry was palatable. It wasn’t a head-over-heels-at-first-sight thing, but it sizzled. I’ve said this before, but I. Felt. It.
“It’ll be all right,” Ian assured me.
“How do you know?” I asked when he revved the engine.
“I don’t,” he said, “but I’ll protect you.”
Their first kiss was seriously one of the best I’ve ever read. I squeed out loud!!!!! The gun lesson *fans self*… and that second last scene! *shivers* Yeah, I loved him. Completely.
I kept alternating between smiling and being near tears. Every part of the story wormed its way into my heart.
In the interest of full openness, I’ll say there were a few typos here and there, one or two moments of plot or dialogue that gave me squinty eyes, and despite there being an epilogue, I maybe might have wanted just a wee bit more at the end. But truly, it made no difference. The story was incredible so it didn’t affect my enjoyment of it.
This is a completely YA story – by that I mean the characters are younger than 20 and there is no sex in the book. But its the kind of beautifully written YA that makes even something as simple and subtle as just a shared glance give you epic butterflies, take your breath away and make your heart just race.
The story was heart breaking, exciting, beautiful, powerful, and thrilling. There were no dull or slow moments. Ever. There was always something new. Something happening. I was drawn completely into every part of the story. And its one that I won’t forget.
“I’m so deep there’s no getting out for me. You own me, you know?”
This book took me on a beautiful journey.
Guys, this is a must-read!!
♥ CASTING ♥
Ian and Sophie | Ian | Sophie
♥ INTERVIEW with FISHER AMELIE (2012) ♥
Aestas!!! Squeeee! *does a little dance* Thank you for having me!
Q – The name of the series sounds so interesting! What are your plans for the rest of the series?
A – Oh! Thank you! Good question. So each novel in The Seven Deadly Series will focus on a deadly sin but they won’t be continuations of Ian’s and Sophie’s story. They’ll be companion novels featuring a secondary character from the previous novel. So, VAIN was book one, of course. If you’ve had the chance to read VAIN you’ll become familiar with my next lead, Spencer. His book will be called GREED.
As far as the remaining books in the series, you guys know about as much as I do. I’m sort of nibbling on an idea for the third book. I believe it will be LUST but the only thing that’s really set in stone for book three is the lead. He’s beyond yummy.
Q – What are you working on right now?
A – GREED! The impossibly scrumptious Spencer leads this action packed story of avarice, excess and an overwhelming desire for more. Spencer is greedy for many, many things including the tempting and alluring Caroline a.k.a. Cricket.
Q – How long did it take you to write Vain?
A – Too long. LOL! It was a six month turn around. A little long for most authors but I was extremely pregnant from beginning to end…well, almost the end. My son was two weeks old when I typed the last word. My books take me a little longer than I’d like because I’ve got babies under four. Also, I do an absurd amount of research and depending on how well acquainted I am with the scenery, so to speak, determines the writing process. You don’t know how many times I’ve wanted to kick myself for not picking a setting closer to home.
Q – What was your inspiration for the story?
A – Three years ago, my hubs and I were sitting on the couch like the lazy gits we are, flipping channels and we stumbled across this interview with Sam Childers, the Machine Gun Preacher. Not many know who he is but the impossibly yummy Gerard Butler portrayed him in the film of the same name. The film was…okay. LOL! Anyway, the interview was nothing short of devastating. It exposed Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army, their deeds and goals and we both walked away from it a little damaged. Immediately after, we decided to give a little money to the organizations opposed to Kony and it appeased our consciences for a little while but the images of these broken and beaten children would stay in my mind. I knew not a lot of America was aware of who Kony was, not even the infamous “KONY 2012” video really put into words or images of just how terrible Kony is. So, last year we began sponsoring a little boy and his family in a dangerous part of Uganda. His story would forever brand itself onto my heart and soul. He is the reason I will forever fight for Kony’s capture. He is the reason I focus on Uganda. He is the reason I wrote this book.
Q – If Vain were to be made into a movie, do you have a dream cast for any of the characters?
A – You know, I’ve given this a lot of thought. A lot. And I can honestly say that I cannot imagine a single soul in Hollywood as Sophie or Ian. I suspect they’d have to be unknowns in order for me to be satisfied. I’d need someone untainted by stereotypes for both roles.
I can imagine someone like Helen Mirren as Karina and Ian McKellen for Charles. I would love to see some freakishly tall, black haired waif of an actor play Pemmy. I would die if they cast him with any sort of accuracy because my idea of what Pemmy looks like is almost comical.
Q – How often do you write?
A – They aren’t lying when they say you have to write every day. I took a week off after my second son was born and when I finally took up my metaphorical pen, I felt like a toddler at the keyboard. I was fumbling around with words as if they weighed a thousand pounds. In other words, everyday for as often as I can for as long as I can…as long as my kids’ needs are met a.k.a. when they’re asleep. Ba ha ha!
Q – What was the first scene that you wrote from Vain? and the last?
A – The first scene I wrote was the party at Sav’s parents’ house. The last scene I wrote was the scene with the burning baobab tree. You’ll know what scene I mean when you read the book. I was blubbering into my keyboard at three in the morning, sort of p.o.’ed at myself for doing what I did. My hubs woke up and was like, “What’s wrong? Is the baby okay?” I just turned, tears streaming down my face and nodded, sobbing gibberish. He saw I was writing and fell right back to sleep, not another question asked. He’s used to this apparently.
Thank you so much for having me, Aestas! I always love being here! So honored!
– Fisher “BoBisher” Amelie
♥ OFFICIAL BLURB ♥
(I’m including this because it was a big part of what sold me on the book)
If you’re looking for a story about a good, humble girl, who’s been hurt by someone she thought she could trust, only to find out she’s not as vulnerable as she thought she was and discovers an empowering side of herself that falls in love with the guy who helps her find that self, blah, blah, blah…then you’re gonna’ hate my story.
Because mine is not the story you read every time you bend back the cover of the latest trend novel. It’s not the “I can do anything, now that I’ve found you/I’m misunderstood but one day you’ll find me irresistible because of it” tale. Why? Because, if I was being honest with you, I’m a complete witch. There’s nothing redeeming about me. I’m a friend using, drug abusing, sex addict from Los Angeles. I’m every girlfriend’s worst nightmare and every boy’s fantasy.
I’m Sophie Price…And this is the story about how I went from the world’s most envied girl to the girl no one wanted around and why I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.
Lauren Duncan says
Can’t wait to read this one, its next up.
Great review, can’t wait to read the entire book.
looks like a great read!
Dione Sage says
Great Review! Adding this to my TBR list!
Fantastic review, you sold the book totally !
Megan Hand says
Sounds amazing! Great review. I think this will be my next buy 🙂
Cheryl S. says
Definitely ready to read this!
Karese Blackwell says
Your review is great! The book sounds amazing…It’s definitely going on my TBR list! Thanks 🙂
Nikki E says
I have not read this yet but would like to. Thanks for the giveaway
Pam K says
Great review. Can’t wait to read!
WOW I am going to have to read this.
Great Review – Have a good week!
[email protected] says
Great review! I felt the same way about this book. One of the best I’ve read in a long time!
I LOVED this book! I have to say, tho, that I do not like the new cover at all. In fact, I’m not sure I would have been so quick to read it had it had this cover at the time that I bought it. Needless to say, I am so glad that I did as it was one of the best books i have read in a long time!
L O V E D it from beginning to end!! Definitely in my top 5!
Karen G. says
Thanks for your review. You have convinced me as I love a book that takes you throught all the emotions! I also love a book that shows the growth of the character, oh and a great romance is a must! lol
I want to read Vain because it sounds like something so unique.
Sarah Polson says
This book sounds so different than the normal books I have read. Very intriguing.
I want to read Vain because I love reading and I want to read every book I can get my hands on. Books are like movies and Vain is a movie with no pictures and I would love to read this story.
OMGG!!! I didn’t realize that Vain was part of a SERIES!! Seriously just made my day. I am SO excited for Greed then!! Awesome interview, thanks Aestas!
I loved it! But when are we going to get the shower scene from Ian’s POV? I need it!
Laura Harris says
You had me at “STRUCK SPEECHLESS”…any book that can make you feel that way when you finish needs to be read by all!! 🙂 Thanks for this giveaway <3
I read callum and Harper but didn’t fully connect with the characters… But I’m still curions about this book ! And it’s sème to get very positive reviews everywhere !
Fantastic interview! Made me want a re-read. Can’t wait for the rest of the sins, hope each has a unique setting. That’s what I loved about Vain, I went in blind & it absolutely blew me away.
Can’t wait to read this book!
Danielle Grater says
I’m glad I read this, I had no idea this would be a series! I LOVED VAIN, and now I cannot wait for GREED!
Robin N says
Great review; another one to add to my TBR! 🙂
Marcela Pereira says
Honestly? I loved your review and how it made you feel. Also the blurb was very convincing and attractive 🙂
Heard a lot of good things about this book, and your review just totally made me want to read it even more! 🙂
This book was recommended to me on Goodreads. Your review has made me want to read it. Thus far I have completely agreed with every review that you have done and I have read. You haven’t led me astray yet! 🙂
I did buy this book a while back – but I’ve been putting it on hold for some time now – don’t really know why that is? After reading your review I think I’ll just man up and get started.
Thanks for your allways insightfull reviews – I really enjoy them.
Thanks for the giveaway! This book sounds awesome!
thank you aestas…. 🙂
I’d read the book , wow… very inspiring
Great review! <3
Anita Jude says
This book sounds very interesting ….i would love to read it………GREAT Review
Omg! I really loved this book?? and it give me inspiration to go to Uganda and help the children there *__* maybe I’ll adopt one of theme
Emma Em says
One of my favorite books ever! <3
Phyllis P says
I really need to read this! It sounds amazing!
Viviana Varona says
One of my all time favorites Aestas.