Book Review: Compulsion by Martina Boone


Title: Compulsion
By: Martina Boone
Release Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Contemporary, Romance, Fantasy, Gothic, Souther Gothic, Paranormal
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased

About Compulsion:

All her life, Barrie Watson has been a virtual prisoner in the house where she lives with her shut-in mother. When her mother dies, Barrie promises to put some mileage on her stiletto heels. But she finds a new kind of prison at her aunt’s South Carolina plantation instead—a prison guarded by an ancient spirit who long ago cursed one of the three founding families of Watson Island and gave the others magical gifts that became compulsions.

Stuck with the ghosts of a generations-old feud and hunted by forces she cannot see, Barrie must find a way to break free of the family legacy. With the help of sun-kissed Eight Beaufort, who knows what Barrie wants before she knows herself, the last Watson heir starts to unravel her family’s twisted secrets. What she finds is dangerous: a love she never expected, a river that turns to fire at midnight, a gorgeous cousin who isn’t what she seems, and very real enemies who want both Eight and Barrie dead.

LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N |  The Book Depository

My Rants and Raves of Compulsion

Compulsion by Martina Boone is a book that I never thought I would read. I just didn’t feel like the premise appealed to me. But during a recent book club meeting, it was voted as our reading book of the month. I didn’t go into this book with high expectations, but let me tell you, I came out loving Compulsion and I look forward to the rest of the series.

Barrie, the main character, is not the most approachable person, but I felt like she held a strong demeanor and went at life with a raw and straight-forward manner. Even though she is going through a lot of emotional baggage throughout the chapters, she stays sincere to herself and approaches the world with caution. Barrie can be a very go-with-the-flow young woman , but I liked that she also questions everything, and I mean everything. She’s not my favorite literary heroine, but I liked how realistic she is and stays throughout the story.

Additionally, I loved that Compulsion is a genuine Southern Gothic story. I love Charleston, South Carolina, and the historical atmosphere that comes with it. When I noticed that Compulsion’s setting was set outside of Charleston, I became more involved with the story. Plus as the story progresses, we get a tremendous and fascinating meshing of Native American folklore and local stories, mystical and innate powers, ghosts, murder, and riveting family drama and secrets that date back generations. If all those ideas engrossed in one book does not give you an adrenaline rush and goosebumps, I don’t know what will.

Overall, I found Compulsion to be a great debut novel to a fascinating series. Although the story has a few confusing loopholes and is slowly-paced at some points, I still cannot wait to read more into Barrie’s family history and powers, and the historical presence depicted throughout the novel. I’m so glad that my book club forced me to read this book, and I hope the other books in the series are as intriguing as Compulsion.

4 star rating

My Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

Note: I was not provided a copy of this book by the author or the publisher in exchange for a review.  I bought this book with my own funds and reviewed it at my own discretion. All statements and opinions in this review are mine.

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