Wednesday 19 June 2019

Book Review: Puck by Kim Askew and Amy Helmes

Last Updated: 14 September 2021

Puck by Kim Askew and Amy Helmes book cover

AD* | Life isn’t always fair, and no one knows that better than fifteen-year-old Puck. When she’s unceremoniously booted from yet another foster home, this city kid lands at DreamRoads, a rehabilitation wilderness camp. 

Her fellow juvenile delinquents include a famous pop star with a diva attitude, a geeky, “fish out of water” math whiz, and a surly gang-banger with a chip on his shoulder. The programme’s steely director aims to break Puck, but she knows that every adult has a breaking point, too. 

Determined to defy this realm of agonising nature hikes and soul-sucking psychobabble - even if that means manipulating four lovestruck camp counsellors and the director’s dim-witted second-in-command - Puck ultimately gets much more than she bargains for in this “wondrous strange” outdoor odyssey inspired by Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Although Puck is the fourth book in Kim Askew and Amy Helmes' Twisted Lit series, this is the first book in the series I have read (yes, I know, breaking my own rule of reading a book from a series out of order!). It has also been sitting on my to-read list literally for years, so I am proud to say that I finally picked it up and read it!

Puck is a modernised story that takes a great deal of inspiration from the classic Shakespeare play A Midsummer Night's Dream. If you are familiar with AMSN then a lot of the characters and scenarios will be familiar to you, but even if you are reading Puck as a standalone I believe it would still be a good story.

Although the main character, the eponymous Puck, may seem like your standard whiny, self-entitled teenager at first, as the story progresses and you learn more about her, it quickly becomes clear that this isn't the case. All the young people at DreamRoads, Puck included, have a pretty complex past, and each campmates' story slowly gets revealed throughout the book.

I did feel that the story was a little repetitive at times, but towards the end, the pace picked up and the story came to a satisfying end. Similarly, although this is a Young Adult story, it does not feel limited by its audience and, despite the fact that it is told from Puck, a teenager's, point of view, I feel that people of all ages could enjoy the book.

I enjoyed this book and I am tempted to check out some of the other books in the Twisted Lit series next!

Rating: 4 stars

Puck is available to buy now.

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* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Will you be reading the book? Let me know in the comments below!

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