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Ruined: A Novel Paperback – August 1, 2010
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"The moody tale throughly embraces the rich history, occult lore and complex issues of race, ethnicity, class and culture that have defined New Orleans for centuries, turning the city into a character in its own right." ― Publishers Weekly, starred review
About the Author
Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Pre-order the official script book today. Kindle | Hardcover
More About the Author
She is the author of three novels for young adults, all published by Scholastic: RUINED, a mystery with a supernatural twist set in New Orleans; DARK SOULS, a novel set in the ancient - and haunted - city of York, England; and UNBROKEN, a sequel to RUINED.
Paula is also the author of award-winning novels for adults, published by Penguin Books in her native New Zealand: QUEEN OF BEAUTY (2002); HIBISCUS COAST (2005); TRENDY BUT CASUAL (2007); and RANGATIRA (2011). RANGATIRA won best book of fiction at the 2012 New Zealand Post Book Awards and the Nga Kupu Ora Maori Book Awards.
In 2013 she published her first children's book, HENE AND THE BURNING HARBOUR (Puffin New Zealand).
Paula's short stories have been widely published and broadcast in both New Zealand and the US, and her short story collection, Forbidden Cities (2008), was a regional finalist in the 2009 Commonwealth Prize. She is the editor of THE PENGUIN BOOK OF CONTEMPORARY NEW ZEALAND SHORT STORIES (2008).
Both HIBISCUS COAST and RUINED have been optioned for film.
Paula has degrees from universities in New Zealand, the U.K. and the US, including an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She has taught creative writing at universities in the US and the UK, and is currently Fiction Writer-in-Residence at the University of Sheffield.
Visit her web site: www.paula-morris.com, or her blog at trendybutcasual.typepad.com. You can also visit the blog "written" by her character Jane Shore, from the novel TRENDY BUT CASUAL: everybodyneedstwoorthreefriends.com
Top Customer Reviews
When I first started this novel I worried that it would be an angsty, teenage complaint fest. It does start off that way a bit. But then angst and complaints are not an unexpected reaction from a fifteen year old who has been taken out of her school and sent off to live with an 'aunt' for the next six months.
Fifteen year old Rebecca's father, a high powered tech consultant, has to travel to out of the country for an extended business trip. Not wanting to burden the elderly neighbor who normally looks after Rebecca during short business trips he packs her off to stay with 'Aunt' Claudia a Tarot card reader (and something of a clairvoyant) and Claudia's daughter Aurelia in post Katrina New Orleans.
Moving away from her friends would have been bad enough but Aunt Claudia's damp, strange, shotgun style house is stuffed to the rafters with Voodoo talismans, monkey skulls, Buddha statues and the like. Topping that off she's also been enrolled in a snooty, upper-crust, school where friends are few and far between.
Upon spying several of the popular kids sneaking into a nearby cemetery late one night she follows to see what they're up to. After nearly being caught eves dropping on the partying teenagers she runs into Lisette who helps her escape unseen.
After several more chance encounters she learns Lisette is the ghost of a girl about her age who met a horrible end and is told about a terrible curse laid over a hundred years ago on one of her new schoolmate's families.
The story paces well. I finished it rather quicker than expected. It's well written. An easy read. It moves enjoyably from beginning to a rather dramatic and exciting ending. This was categorized on Amazon as 'Juvenile Fiction' but I feel that it will appeal to adults and teens alike who are looking for a bit of light reading.
I could tell that this book was written with a lot of love. The author put care into even the most despicable characters which made the book that much better. It was written so well, too. I felt like I wasn't reading, rather sneaking into the Lafayette Cemetary with Rebecca and watching the parades of Mardi Gras.
Exhilarting. That's what that last half of the book was. I never knew what was going to happen and when it did I had to have an inhaler on hand. It was the kind of ghost story I used to hear around my campfire (less paranormal and more human) and I think those are the scariest. The ghost had history and her own character and after I really was connected to her story then something happened that totally threw me off. In a good way. I didn't know what to believe until the end!
I reccommend this to anyone who likes history and truly just a well told story. It didn't have any superficial layers. If you like ghosts and curses you'll love the way this story fans out. I think the author did a fabulous job and I can't wait to read her again!
It keeps getting worse for Rebecca. The girls in her school are especially troublesome: the daughters of privilege, they are used to getting their own way. But there are two families who are especially troublesome, the Bowmans and the Suttons. And a boy, of course, helps liven up the mix.
A new Orleans Mardi Gras is a lot more complicated than what the average tourist sees and this makes very interesting reading. While the history of the story is pretty glossed over with the stories of the parades and Krewes, it is still very well described.
Add one ghost and this makes a great story. Doesn't it seem like teenage girls always get the bad end of the deal in a ghost story? This one is no exception while being somewhat predictable.
This is a very good high interest book for pre-adolescent and adolescent girls. It would also work well with reading groups in a middle school setting, and perhaps with some fifth graders.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Actual rating 3.5 stars, but I always round up in author's favor if I can't give half stars.
I love the city of New Orleans, and it's one of my favorite locations to... Read more
Having been born in New Orleans , I will say that this book is intriguing in its accuracy on so many points. The way people carry themselves, the way old money speaks... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Marla
This book kept me very intrigued. I was anxious to read every page until the very end. It's written very wellPublished 6 months ago by hollyh
Enjoyed it very much! Lots of New Orleans history and facts about Mardi Gras and voodoo culture of the past.Published 7 months ago by April R. Grace
I really enjoyed this book. It was full of New Orleans history, suspense, mystery. It's great.Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer