Losing Faith by Denise Jaden
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release date: September 7, 2010
A terrible secret. A terrible fate.
When Brie's sister, Faith, dies suddenly, Brie's world falls apart. As she goes through the bizarre and devastating process of mourning the sister she never understood and barely even liked, everything in her life seems to spiral farther and farther off course. Her parents are a mess, her friends don't know how to treat her, and her perfect boyfriend suddenly seems anything but.
As Brie settles into her new normal, she encounters more questions than closure: Certain facts about the way Faith died just don't line up. Brie soon uncovers a dark and twisted secret about Faith's final night...a secret that puts her own life in danger.
Losing Faith was an original and captivating debut that left me dying to read more by Denise Jaden! Her writing is beautiful and the plot of Losing Faith was so different from any other YA novel.
To begin with, the main character, Brie, was one of a kind. She had spent most of her life living in her sister's shadow. When Faith dies, Brie's world begins to unravel. Even though Brie never had a real relationship with Faith, her sister's passing impacts Brie's life in more ways than anyone could imagine.
Brie was very likable and over the course of the story I grew to like her more and more. At first she may seem like a silly and not so serious character, but as the novel progresses Brie learns a lot about herself and what she stands for. Dedicated and determined, Brie never gave up on finding the truth. Brie's family has always been very religious, but that's one point that Brie and her sister Faith did not agree on. Faith was very extreme in her beliefs and Brie was still deciding what she thought of God and religion in general. After Faith's death Brie uncovers some startling secrets about her sister.
Death is hard in any form and Denise Jaden made Faith's passing seem very realistic and heartbreaking. Watching Brie's parents unravel was so sad and the way Brie's "friends" were not there to support her was awful. Luckily, Brie made some new friends that were ten times better- more trustworthy, caring, and determined to make everything right for Brie and her family. I especially liked Tessa because she was such a complex character. She was dealing with a lot at home and it took someone like Brie to break through her tough exterior. Alis, the male "lead" of Losing Faith, was another sweet and caring guy.
The plot was so original and, at times, dark. The idea of religious cults is something I've never read much about, especially in YA. Denise Jaden presented it in a unique light and emphasized the point of how dangerous they can be. Religion played a large role in Losing Faith, but it never made me uncomfortable, but rather intrigued me because I was learning about a side of religion that I didn't know much about.
Overall, I highly recommend Losing Faith. It's an amazing debut novel and will leave you wanting more from Denise Jaden. With a powerful plot line, beautiful writing, and fantastic characters, Losing Faith is one 2010 release you don't want to miss!
Overall: 4.5 out of 5 stars