Friday, June 27, 2014

Review: Melt by Selene Castrovilla

by Selene Castrovilla
Publication Date: November 6, 2014
Published by Last Syllable Books
Pages: 328
Source: JenHalliganPR

from Goodreads

MELT is a brutal love story, set against the backdrop of The Wizard of Oz. Sixteen year old “good girl” Dorothy just blew into the small town of Highland Park – where the social headquarters is Munchkinland (Dunkin’ Donuts.) There, she meets Joey – a “bad boy” who tells no one about the catastrophic domestic violence he witnesses at home. Can these two lovers survive peer pressure, Joey’s reputation, and his alcoholism? And then there’s his family's secret – about to be unleashed.

Told in dual first person, Joey's words are scattered on the page - reflecting his broken state. Dorothy is the voice of reason - until something so shattering happens that she, too, may lose her grip. Can their love endure, or will it melt away?

MELT is based on true events. It is both a chilling tale of abuse, and a timeless romance. It will hit you like a punch in the face, and also seep through the cracks in your soul.

My Thoughts

There are times when I read a book that it is gripping and moving and so satisfying that I don't know what to say and I'm having that experience right now. I read Melt twice and reread several parts of it more than a few times and I'm still searching for the words to express why it is a must read. This is truly meant to be a compliment because it was that good.

What I liked most was that I was in the moment with the characters - in the room with them, by the river, at that same Dunkin' Donuts. The writing transported me to where Dorothy and Joey were. Through the good and the bad. I wasn't just reading a book, I was witness to this story and this was quite a different experience from many books that I read.

Joey and Dorothy's relationship is immediate, yet it isn't romanticized. They are instantly drawn to one another in a way that I could honestly believe. Sometimes you can feel a person's presence and you are convinced that this is someone that you need to know. That's how it was for Joey and Dorothy.

I loved the stylistic writing used to distinguish Joey and Dorothy's perspectives. Joey's voice is clipped, almost staccato as we learn the horrors that he has to deal with at home. It is like he needs to tell his story fast, to get it out, get it over with. Dorothy's perspective is more narrative, descriptive, she takes the time to tell what she's thinking. The styles shift and change as their perspectives and situations change and this was completely organic to the story. 

Here are some notable quotes that stuck with me: 

"I couldn't help him. I could hold him, hold space for him -- but I couldn't save him. He had to find his own way through." (Dorothy, page 57)

"In the dark you know things can't get worse so you can finally rest some." (Joey, pages 95-96)

"Apparently an open mind closes real fast when your sixteen year old daughter's involved." (Dorothy, page 101)

"And the ironic thing is, I'd love to talk to them. I'd love to tell them how things have been, to get their advice on everything that's been happening, good and bad. It's all been so new, so much . . ." (Dorothy, page 103)

Melt is a moving book that I couldn't stop reading until the very end. And when I did finish those last pages, all I could think was - Wow, that happened. And it was powerful. 

I hope this book makes it in the hands of many readers.

Disclaimer:  I received this e-ARC from JenHalliganPR in exchange for my honest review.  I was not compensated in any way other than the e-ARC provided. Quotes were taken from the e-ARC and are subject to change in the final copy. Thoughts and opinions are my own.

About Selene Castrovilla

Selene Castrovilla Selene Castrovilla is an award-winning teen and children’s author who believes that through all trends, humanity remains at the core of literature. She is the author of Saved By the Music and The Girl Next Door, teen novels originally published by WestSide Books and now available digitally through ASD Publishing. Her third children’s book with Calkins Creek Books, Revolutionary Friends, was released in April. She is also a contributing author to UncommonYA. Selene holds an MFA in creative writing from New School University and a BA in English from New York University. She lives on Long Island with her two sons. Visit her website for book excerpts and more information!


One winner will receive a signed ARC of MELT and $25 Amazon or B&N gift card (US/CA only). Three winners will receive an ebook copy (international).

***Any contestant that uses dummy or contest only accounts to enter will be disqualified.***


1 comment:

  1. That's so funny, I actually know exactly where the cover photo was taken and it wasn't very far from here! Let's go see it Joli! Road trip! :)


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