Review: Fury by Shirley Marr
Fury by Shirley Marr
My rating: 3 of 5 teacups
I can understand why some people might like Fury. It's one of those books that surprises you towards the end and it becomes increasingly darker throughout the novel. I did enjoy it. However, I didn't love it anywhere near as well as I thought I would simply because I can point you towards several authors that do what Shirley Marr does but are far better at it.
Raw Blue, for example, is a book that deals with personal trauma as well as family difficulties and it has a similar style of starting after the bad stuff has occurred and letting the reader find out in random flashbacks of memory what actually happened. I like this format and I admit that Shirley Marr uses it in quite an effective way. But she didn't capture that pain, that raw emotion. This was probably because the main "trauma" was experienced by the friend of the narrator and not the protagonist herself. Whatever the reason, it made the whole reading experience a lot less dramatic and effective for me.
Another thing, I mentioned that this book surprises you at the end. I do mean the story, but I also mean by suddenly getting a lot better. I found that I struggled with caring about the plot and characters during some parts earlier on in the novel and would have given it only two stars if there hadn't been the sudden improvement.
I'm also still not sure what I think about the way the characters were portrayed. We are immediately introduced to elitist, bitchy and spoilt rich girls that use "like" way too many times in a sentence and truly believe they were born superior to everyone else. It was annoying but I expected the author to kind of "humanize" them in the way that Melina Marchetta does with characters that you should dislike but don't. I kept waiting to have that moment where I realise that even these spoilt, bitchy girls are just like everyone else in some ways, that they have worries and insecurities and are simply the way they are because of how they've been brought up to be. Though there were some attempts to do this, I didn't think it was particularly effective, especially in comparison to other authors I've read recently, the aforementioned Melina Marchetta, and A.S. King to name a couple.
The novel ended up being 20% teen trauma/crime/heartache and 80% high school politics. The latter is a type of novel that so very rarely works for me anyway and I fear even a very well-written story of that sort would have trouble beating the likes of Courtney Summers, an author who manages to capture teen anger, guilt and sadness in a high school setting better than any I've ever known. Fury spent too much time focusing on cliques, rumours and boys so that what the novel was really about got very small coverage and does not stand out in my mind as an example of this kind of story being handled well.
If you like dark, young adult reads that conclude well even if the rest of the novel is underwhelming... well, Fury could be your next favourite book.
Posted on October 13 2011
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