TORN - by Cat Clarke

Torn - Cat Clarke
Year Published: 2011 - by Quercus.
Genres: Young adult / mystery / contemporary / thriller / drama / realistic fiction.
Pages: 372.
Source: Library.
Four girls. One dead body. A whole lot of guilt. Alice King isn’t expecting the holiday of a lifetime when she sets off with her classmates on a trip to the Scottish wilderness, but she’s not exactly prepared for an experience beyond her darkest nightmares… Alice and her best friend Cass are stuck in a cabin with Polly, the social outcast, and Rae, the moody emo-girl. Then there’s Tara – queen of mean. Powerful, beautiful and cruel, she likes nothing better than putting people down. Cass decides it’s time to teach Tara a lesson she’ll never forget. And so begins a series of events that will change the lives of these girls forever...

Ooooh *shivers*
I really enjoyed this book.

It wasn't a nice story in the slightest, but it was decently written and constantly entertaining. I literally could not put the book down. I was utterly gripped, terrified, and freaked out. It was vividly and intimately haunting, and the subject matter was agonising. It was a probing look into the lives of school girls made even more horrifying by the fact that they were my age. It was creepy and frightening for me to read about their experiences all the while knowing I could be in their place. It was chilling and real, and it was gut-wrenching. 
On a side note, suicide and murder were mentioned frequently. This was a very dark story.

The plot wasn't original. And the characters - while vivid - were stereotypical and predictable. Yet they moved me, and they felt real to me, and in the end the stereotypes weren't as annoying as they might have been.
The dialogue wasn't great, and the story took predictable and unoriginal turns. Still, I thought it drastically improved after the incident of Tara's death; before her death, it was much more cliche and the foreshadowing seemed forced. Afterwards, the characters became much more fully realised, and I loved seeing all their secrets come to light. It allowed me to better understand their previous actions, and I loved watching them as they revealed their true colours.

I didn't like any of the characters. I could relate to Alice a bit, and at first I rather liked the teacher, Daley, but ultimately there was no one I was rooting for; if you can put it like that. Towards the end, however, I did really grow to like Danni. She was strong and interesting, and I enjoyed seeing her true character show itself after Tara's death.
I wasn't a big fan of the romance. It was predictable, lukewarm, and boring.

I feel like I should explain to you why this review is largely negative but I'm still giving the book 4 flowers ;)
Well, I enjoyed reading it.

Torn was gripping, terrifying, entertaining and tragic. It certainly had its flaws, but I really "enjoyed" getting lost in the horrifying, gut-wrenching, dark world of teenage lies, love, insecurities, and fears.