Book Review of Torn by Ericka O’Rourke

Title: Torn

Author: Erica O’Rourke

Release Date: June 28th, 2011

Genre: Young Adult Urban Fantasy

Everyone has secrets. Even best friends.

Swirling black descends like ravens, large enough to block the glow of the streetlights. A dull roar starts like a train on the ‘L’, a far-away rumbling that grows louder as it pulls closer, until it’s directly overhead and you feel it in your chest, except this doesn’t pass you by. Verity, white-faced and eyes blazing, shouts through the din, “Run, Mo!”

Mo Fitzgerald knows about secrets. But when she witnesses her best friend’s murder, she discovers Verity was hiding things she never could have guessed. To find the answers she needs and the vengeance she craves, Mo—quiet, ordinary, unmagical Mo—will have to enter a world of raw magic and shifting alliances. And she’ll have to choose between two very different, equally dangerous guys—protective, duty-bound Colin and brash, mysterious Luc. One wants to save her, one wants to claim her. Which would you choose?

Summary from

My Review: I was offered the second book in this series by the publisher. I had not heard of the series before, but when I looked it on Goodreads it sounded really interesting. I had some time before the second book released and I wanted to read book one first anyways. I know that some people can read books out of order, but I am not one of them, plus I hate feeling like I am missing something. So I went to the bookstore and picked up Torn and began reading.

The first thing I want to address is how perfect this title is for this book. Our main character, Mo, is torn in many different directions. She has just lost her best friend, Verity, in a brutal murder that she witnessed. She has no idea who is behind the attack, but she knows the culprits don’t seem to be human. She is desperate to learn more about what happened to Verity and ends up getting thrust into a world of magic that she is neither prepared for, nor understands. She is also guilt stricken over not being able to help Verity and feels obligated to do all she can to avenge her death.

We are going to have to talk about this love triangle now. If you follow my blog or reviews at all then you probably know I am not a fan of them. I think a lot of it has to do with just me wanting the guy I am rooting for to not end up broken hearted, lol. I know selfish right? But I also don’t like how sometimes they can be added to a book just to add tension where really it is not necessary. However, I am going to admit to the fact that the love triangle in this book actually makes total sense. Why you might ask? Well, as the title says, Mo is torn, she has two roads she can take in her life and the guys represent part of those choices. Luc, is a little dark, a little dangerous and he will take Mo on a perilous journey she is not sure if she is ready for. He is also a direct connection to Verity and Mo is not sure if Luc likes her for who she is or if she is just a substitute for Verity. The other guy, Colin, is safe, reliable and will help protect her from any harm that might come her way. While I can say I did not like him at the beginning of the novel, he grew on me and he seems to genuinely care for Mo and it made him very endearing. I can honestly see Mo going with either of them; the problem is she needs to decide who she is and what she really wants out of life. Only then will her heart lead her to the guy she is meant to be with and the path she is meant to walk.

As for the plot, I really appreciated the beginning of the book because we get to jump right into it. There is no fluffy filler introduction and I was so happy to just get down to the action. The book opens with the aftereffects of the attack on Mo and Verity and how Mo is trying to deal with it. The problem is Verity was supposed to be the savior for so many, but was killed. Have you noticed that in paranormal or fantasy books there is always a prophecy, but it always seems to get fulfilled somehow in the end, by who it is that is destined to fill it? Well, that was supposed to be Verity and she died, so now what? Mo is trying her best to step up, but she has no magic so how much can she really help? She is also frustrated because so many decisions are being made for her and her free will is being revoked. I can understand how frustrating that must be for her. Torn is about Mo trying to discover who killed her friend, but it is also a journey of self-discovery. She really thought she was one person, but now that she is being challenged she is discovering that she might actually be someone completely different. There is a passage in the book that sums it up pretty well. It is Mo mentally venting after someone else is tells her what to do.

“God, I was tired of people telling me how careful I needed to be. There’s been too much change- Verity’s death, Kowalski’s prying, Luc’s evasiveness-careful and quiet didn’t fit me anymore. It was unsettling. Lonely, too. I spent seventeen years quietly following every rule in the book. And it had turned out okay, mostly. But Verity’s death had cracked my life in two-before and after- and nothing worked the way it was supposed to.”

Life changes people, events change people, and we are witnesses to Mo’s changes in Torn. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of this book and am so thankful I already have the second book on hand so I can keep going on this journey with Mo. Erica has written a fascinating world that has a little bit of everything. I am excited to see what will happen to Mo after the events at the end of this book and look forward to more from Erica in the future.


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