13 August 2011

Review: Jenny Pox - J.L. Bryan

Jenny Pox by J.L. Bryan
published July 2009
young adult urban fantasy with some supense and horror (for readers 16 and older)
bought my copy

The one thing Jenny has always to remember is to not touch anybody with her bare skin. Because her touch can be deadly. Jenny's life is dictated by her deadly ability and she is forced to live a lonely life without any close contact to other people. When she realizes that she's not the only one with a special kind of touch and when she meets a boy whom she can touch without any terrible consequences, her life changes. 
Jenny starts to fight for her happiness with Seth, the boy she can touch. But before she can be happy she has to survive the deadly intrigues by the girl who enjoys nothing more than to torment her. 

When I started with "Jenny Pox" I wasn't sure what to expect. I knew that this book would be different from what I usually read and I was anxious if the horror elements would work or me. And they did, maybe because they only appeared in the last quarter of the book and because they were mostly executed by Jenny, whom I liked a lot.

All of the characters in this story are full of flaws and I'm not talking about cute little flaws you can joke about. You have evil intrigues, drugs and even a killing spree. So this book is definitely not light-hearted. It's raw and brutally honest about what human beings are willing to do to achieve their goals. Jenny herself is no angel and that's one of the things I liked. She learned the hard way how unfair life can be and that there's often no justice. Maybe that's why she changed her behaviour throughout the book and at the end was like an avenging angel. 

The concept that Jenny's skin was deadly for other people was fascinating and disturbing at the same time. Touching another person is so normal for us, not being able to do it sounds gruesome to me. The way Jenny dealt with her unwanted ability was mesmerizing and heart-breaking. 

The love story between Jenny and Seth didn't work for me at once, I needed some time to get used to it. Mostly because Seth was in my opinion a bit boring and dumb at first, but J.L. Bryan managed to change my mind throughout the story and at the end I rooted for them.

Some things in this book were over the top and very dramatic but that fit to the story and didn't annoy me. Reading Reading "Jenny Pox" was like a visit on the fair with rides on the rollercoaster, a slow carrousel and a visit in the ghost train. I definitely enjoyed my trip and even though I don't need to read stories like this one daily, "Jenny Pox" was a thrilling change to my usual books. The story is part of a trilogy and I'm excited to see how the series will continue, especially because I liked how this book ended. 

I think the cover looks beautiful and the girl on it fits to how Jenny is described in the book. When I saw the cover I was immediately drawn to the book.

final appraisal
I was suprised by how well "Jenny Pox" worked for me and by how much the story interested & entertained me. The book has a raw, compelling style and if you are in the mood for an unusual, at times harsh and dark book, then "Jenny Pox" could work for you. 


  1. I absolutely ADORED Jenny Pox! Definitely one of my favorite reads sobdmdar this year!!

  2. I so don't agree with you, that cover is creepy! Is it really her own arm hugging her? And the story itself, especially as you tell about horror bits, not for me. But thanks for the review, I will consider myself warned away.




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