Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Review: Triangles by Ellen Hopkins

Source: Received an ARC from Simon and Schuster Canada and one from Atria (shared with another blogger)
Publisher: Atria
Release Date: October 18, 2011
Number of Pages: 544 (Hardcover)

Blurb from Goodreads:
In this first adult novel by the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the unforgettable Crank trilogy, three female friends face midlife crises in a no holds-barred exploration of sex, marriage, and the fragility of life.
Ellen Hopkins has made her mark as the wildly popular author of several novels for young adults—every one of them a New York Times bestseller, and every one a hard-hitting exploration of tough-to-tackle topics. Now, in Triangles, Hopkins brings her storytelling mastery and fearlessness to take on the challenges of adult dramas.

In this emotionally powerful novel, three women face the age-old midlife question: If I’m halfway to death, is this all I’ve got to show for it? Holly, filled with regret for being a stay-at-home mom, sheds sixty pounds and loses herself in the world of extramarital sex. Andrea, a single mom and avowed celibate, watches her friend Holly’s meltdown with a mixture of concern and contempt. Holly is throwing away what Andrea has spent her whole life searching for—a committed relationship with a decent guy. So what if Andrea picks up Holly’s castaway husband? Then there’s Marissa. She has more than her fair share of challenges—a gay teenage son, a terminally ill daughter, and a husband who buries himself in his work rather than face the facts. As one woman’s marriage unravels, another one’s rekindles. As one woman’s family comes apart at the seams, another’s is reconfigured into something bigger and better. In this story of connections and disconnections, one woman’s up is another one’s down, and all three of them will learn the meaning of friendship, betrayal, and forgiveness before it is through.

This was my first time reading something written in poetic verse...and also something written by Ellen Hopkins, and I absolutely loved it. I was extremely hesitant to try poetic verse out at first, but I decided that I'd give it a shot, and I am so glad that I did! Triangles was a beautiful story, and it was beautifully written! I was seriously blown away while I read this one, it was one of those stories that sticks with you long after you've finished reading. :D

Before trying poetic verse, I was always worried that it would be hard to get to know the characters,  but in Triangles, the characters were so real, and while I didn't always approve of their actions...*cough* Holly *cough* I still felt like I genuinely got to know them throughout the book. I loved that Triangles alternated points of view between three characters, Holly, Andrea, and Marissa, and I especially loved that all three of their lives were connected in some way. Holly was best friends with Andrea, who was the sister of Marissa, so sometimes their stories would overlap, and I really liked when that happened, it just made it seem so much more involved.

Out of the three characters, Marissa's stories were my favourite, she was genuinely such an amazing person, who had been through so much, and I was thrilled that her ending of the story seemed pretty optimistic. Holly, was probably my least favourite, but I did find her parts entertaining...morally, I just kind of found her to be a terrible person. I could understand why she acted the way she did...even if her choices were kind of terrible. Andrea, was somewhere in the middle, she'd been through lots but she'd worked hard in her life to get where she was. All of these women had men problems, which I'm sure is pretty obvious by the description, but they all handled them in different ways.

My favourite of the poetic verses were the sections between the different narrators. If you read the words that stuck out off to the side, they'd form a complete sentence, or idea, and every time I'd read one of them, I just couldn't help but smile! :D I was completely enthralled with Triangles once I started it, and I honestly didn't put it down until I was done. For a 500-and-some page book, it seriously just flew by! :D

I seriously can't recommend Triangles enough! It was a captivating story told in a beautiful way. I will put a bit of a warning here though because Triangles does mention sex, and there are a few scenes that don't go into explicit detail, but they describe enough that it might not be appropriate for younger readers. Ellen Hopkins does have YA titles though, so if you're younger and want to try one of her books out, maybe go for those ones first, and wait on Triangles until you're a bit older. :)

If you're a bit hesitant to try poetic verse, like I was, I say go for it! Don't be afraid, and give it a chance. You might love it like I did, and after reading Triangles, I can definitely say that I've become an Ellen Hopkins fan for life! :D

Happy Reading!!!

♪♫ Ambur


  1. Thanks so much, Ambur.... so happy you gave the verse a try.... that will be the biggest hurdle, I'm sure. Once most readers get used to it, though, like you, they love it.

  2. You're welcome, Ellen! :D I can definitely see that, it's one of those things you can't really know you'll like until you try! :D Thanks for commenting on my review, you've totally made my day! :D

  3. Ellen Hopkins is my favourite author! If you liked the poetic verse you should read her other books. They make reading that much better :)
    - sarah

  4. Thanks for commenting, Sarah! :D I definitely plan on reading more of her books in the future...I just need to get my hands on some. :D

  5. I am so amazed by your genius. it's amazing the depths you go to dispalying the imperfections and strengths of your characters and package it in such an artisitic way.

  6. Glad you enjoyed it! I haven't read Ellen Hopkins, but everyone says she's amazing.

    If you're interested in checking out more verse novels you should look up "Karma" by Cathy Ostlere. She's a Canadian author and the book is just amazing.

  7. Triangles is the first novel I've read by Ellen Hopkins. I've heard a ton of great things about this author and her books so I was thrilled to get my hands on Triangles. Ellen Hopkins is well known for her young adult novels but Triangles is an adult novel.
    This novel is written in a beautifully descriptive verse. The story line focuses on three women who are at a cross roads of sort in their lives. Holly, Andrea and Marissa are all struggling with different issues and circumstances. Holly is a mother of three who wants something different. Her search leads her to exploring her sexuality. Andrea is a single mom who is still searching for that special someone. Marissa is married but might as well be single for the amount of attention her husband shows her. Marissa also has her hands full with her terminally ill daughter.
    Ellen Hopkins is an epic story teller. Triangles is told from all three women's points-of-view. I love how the author gave a glimpse into the other characters reaction to the events unfolding. I was glued to the pages as I read through this book. I didn't want to put it down for anything. Triangles is an emotional roller coaster that had me on the edge of my seat waiting to see how the events were going to play out. I felt connected to the characters and their individual stories. This book had me laughing and crying until the very last page.


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