Book Review: Prized by Caragh M. O’Brien

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Just when Gaia thought she had escaped strange, harsh rules and saved her baby sister by trekking to the rumored town of Sylum, she finds herself bound in new unwelcome ways, and familiar faces don’t bring comfort the way they should.

This is a companion to Birthmarked (2010). Gaia’s strong character is put through a gauntlet of daunting challenges that help her grow into a more confident person. The beginning is action-packed but still seemed slow. However, in all, this is a satisfying conclusion of an amazing story. The cover is eye-catching and the audience is in the 12-14 range.

I like how two very different societies are compared to each other here. The way Gaia stays true to her beliefs no matter what inspiring. The confusion and tension of multiple love interests vying for her adds a unique twist to liven the plot, as does the mystery of the dying males and “swamp illness” that makes leaving sylum impossible and deadly.

Reviewed by Marissa, age 15