Book Review: Torn Away by Jennifer Brown

by Jac on August 1, 2014

I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Torn Away by Jennifer BrownTorn Away by Jennifer Brown
Published by Little Brown Books on 2014-05-06
Genres: Death & Dying, Family, Friendship, Young Adult
Pages: 288
Source: Netgalley
Born and raised in the Midwest, Jersey Cameron knows all about tornadoes. Or so she thinks. When her town is devastated by a twister, Jersey survives -- but loses her mother, her young sister, and her home. As she struggles to overcome her grief, she's sent to live with her only surviving relatives: first her biological father, then her estranged grandparents.In an unfamiliar place, Jersey faces a reality she's never considered before -- one in which her mother wasn't perfect, and neither were her grandparents, but they all loved her just the same. Together, they create a new definition of family. And that's something no tornado can touch.

Some books you love, some books you adore and some books you devour. But some books? You live with within the pages, feeling every emotion so completely you feel like your heart is being torn out. That? That is how Torn Away by Jennifer Brown felt to me.

I grew up in the midwest, with tornado season bringing some of my most cherished childhood memories. (I know that sounds strange, these deadly storms – but you don’t know fun until you’ve hidden in a closet, surrounded by all your most cherished possessions hoping to save them should this be the freak occasion when a tornado actually hits your town.) I wanted to be a storm chaser, I loved everything about storms. And I knew, in the early pages of this book, that I had found one of those books that was going to touch my soul. As Jersey saw Kolby standing in his back yard looking at the storm, something I’ve done a thousand times, I bonded with this book.

I wasn’t expecting what came next. I wasn’t expecting Jersey to lose everything. To be thrown to the wolves. To not get her chance to grieve. And for all of those things? I am so incredibly angry for her. Her character was just so real to me, so raw. I loved every bit of her, especially the broken ones. I just wanted to grab her, pull her up into a hug and never let her go.

And then, near the end? It came. The ugly cry. The one that had my neighbor asking if I was ok. (Seriously!) This book just grabbed me so much, that I cried and cried as though I was at my own loved ones grave.

I feel like this review is just one big gush fest, but I can’t tell you how much I adored this book. The characters, the plot, the writing. All superb. The story was one I won’t soon forget and that I can see myself re-reading time and again.


I'm a homeschooling hockey mom from southern Colorado! I spend my free time blogging and reading (when I'm not at the ice arena or hiking in the Rockies!) and I have a crazy addiction to water bottles!

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