photo courtesy of megcabot.com

Teenagers are bored with the vampires, werewolves and various other monsters who have taken over Young Adult bookshelves across America. The Dewey Decimal system has been overrun with supernatural romances, and the same stock characters keep getting recycled. In the real world, reducing and reusing are great concepts, but when it comes to literature, we’re tired of seeing Edward Cullen in every novel.

Readers knew Meg Cabot understood this when she published Abandon in 2011. The YA book is essentially a modernized Hades and Persephone tale, only this time Hades isn’t so evil, and Persephone isn’t so pathetic.

John Hayden, the Hades character, and Pierce Oliviera, Persephone, obviously fall into some sort of relationship. But the cool part isn’t that they like each other, it’s the mystery surrounding Pierce’s death-turned-life again, and all the strange occurrences which follow her near-death experience.

But what really makes Abandon a great novel is how un-seriously Cabot takes her characters. They all are dynamic (or as dynamic as YA characters can be), dramatic and over-the-top sarcastic. The reader knows they’re not reading the next Great American Novel, and Cabot willingly admits she’s no Mark Twain or Ernest Hemingway.

Abandon is only the first in a series, and the next installment, Underworld, is set to hit stores May 8. I, for one, am extremely excited to see what happens with John and Pierce and their bizarre situation. Maybe it is just romantic trash for teenage girls, but you know what? I am a teenage girl.

3.5 out of 5 stars