AUTHOR: Lisa Heathfield
RELEASE DATE: March 10th 2015
PUBLISHER: Running press kids
PAGE COUNT: 336
All that Pearl knows can be encapsulated in one word: Seed. It is the isolated community that she was born into. It is the land that she sows and reaps. It is the center of her family and everything that means home. And it is all kept under the watchful eye of Papa S.
I finished this book a few nights ago, and I haven't stopped thinking about it since. It's a haunting and powerful look at faith and what it can do to people.
The characters in 'seed' were overall dynamic and enjoyable. The ones who were supposed to be likable were likable, and the ones that weren't absolutely made my skin crawl. Pearl had the perfect mix of courage and naivite, and although she was sometimes extremely frustrating it made sense with how she had been raised. I thought her thought processes and reactions were realistic for somebody in her situation and I really enjoyed hearing the story from her voice. My only issues with the characters in this book were that I got some of the characters- particularly the women- mixed up and found it a little bit hard to differentiate in my head. I also wanted to know more about Papa S as he was a very intriguing (and horrible) character.
Lisa Heathfield's writing was beautiful and poetic; the prose flowed really well. I felt she built the atmosphere at seed very effectively and I definitely felt the tension grow as the book went on. I liked that the story was dark and chilling and I think her writing really added to the creepy-ness of the book. In addition, Lisa perfectly captured the emotions of the characters which made the book so much more powerful. Overall I was really impressed with the writing style and I'd love to read more from this author.
Some parts of the book were a little bit slow- especially near the start- however as the book went on the pace really picked up and by half way through I couldn't stop reading. There were a few things that happened that really got my heart racing (mostly at the end, but I'll talk about that in a minute) but you have to be prepared for some points to drag out a little bit.
Unfortunately I wasn't a massive fan of the romance in this book. I don't normally say this, but I actually wish it had been a bigger part of the story! I really liked the potential between the two main characters and I just wish it would have had more time to grow.
I really liked how 'seed' explored the topic of faith and religion, and how it can totally brainwash people. (I'm not saying all faith is destructive and bad, I'm really not. Right now I'm talking about more 'extreme' cult-like religious groups). For some reason cults in general fascinate me, which is actually the reason I requested this on netgalley in the first place. It's a really interesting concept to read about and I think Lisa Heathfield handled it really well.
I can't say too much about the ending without spoiling it (trust me, you don't want to be spoiled), but I will say that it is shocking and unexpectedly heartbreaking. I cried. A lot. I did think that maybe it was too brutal to fit the tone of the rest of the book but I've decided that it drove down the point the author was trying to make, and it definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat.
'Seed' was haunting and powerful, with beautiful writing and an ending I never saw coming. I highly recommend it!