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review: “cathy’s ring” June 18, 2009

Posted by Katie in reviews.
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Cathy’s Ring by Sean Stewart.
Running Press Kids // Hardcover // 144 pages.
Reviewed from purchased copy.

In the final book of the Cathy series, Cathy’s life is once again in shambles. Cathy thinks the only way to save all of her friends and family is to run away and start her life over with Jewel’s brother Denny. Can her friends rally around her and convince Cathy that she really belongs at home with them?

First of all, do not open the evidence packet in this volume before you finish reading the book. It will spell out the ending to you immediately and you will regret it! Needlessly to say, that’s what happened to me.

This last volume was a disappointment for me. Cathy’s decision to run bothered me, her friends convincing her to stay (with a heavy handed “friendship saves all” moral attached) bothered me, and the end result of the villain, Ancestor Lu, bothered me. The whole ending, in fact, brought back echoes of “Breaking Dawn” for me — no one died, but everything was solved. Additionally, the title of the book is obvious — their relationship ends with a ring. And this could send me on a rant about YA fiction pushing marriage and rushing into long-term relationships when the characters are still teenagers, but instead I’ll refrain.

The major problem with this book is that there is no mystery. All the evidence has already been uncovered and the serum is the solution. There is a minor twist with Victor, but anyone who had been paying attention should have been able to guess what happened before it’s revealed to Cathy.

Cathy, for all her wit and humor, once again fails to be the heroine. I think that’s an interesting way to go about writing a mystery series. The problem is that her friends saving her comes with the moral attached — friendship saves. I wanted a bit more of a balance between Cathy needing her friends and her friends needing her. Luckily, there was one lovely moment at the end between Cathy and Emma that saved this book from bombing for me. It was always the relationship between Cathy and Emma that kept me reading and I was so glad I stuck it out.

I’d definitely recommend the series to teens, but I don’t think I’d be picking up another one, unless it concentrated on the immortals.

SWAN catalog
Sean Stewart




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