Seventeen-year-old Lochan and sixteen-year-old Maya have always felt more like friends than siblings. Together they have stepped in for their alcoholic, wayward mother to take care of their three younger siblings. As de facto parents to the little ones, Lochan and Maya have had to grow up fast. And the stress of their lives—and the way they understand each other so completely—has also also brought them closer than two siblings would ordinarily be. So close, in fact, that they have fallen in love. Their clandestine romance quickly blooms into deep, desperate love. They know their relationship is wrong and cannot possibly continue. And yet, they cannot stop what feels so incredibly right. As the novel careens toward an explosive and shocking finale, only one thing is certain: a love this devastating has no happy ending. (from GoodReads)
Forbidden is an excellent read, tragic and hopelessly romantic, but will, unfortunately, not be loved by everyone. I can see this book, in the future, being on a banned books list. And that is because it features incest. Despite the tough subject matter, Forbidden is tastefully written and a real page-turner as you hope for a happy ending that you know won't come.
I know a lot of people will be wary about reading Forbidden and I would say to let go of your judgments and pre-conceived notions and just read. Enjoy the story. If you are able to respectively encounter something that you are uncomfortable with and that you don't agree with, you are more mature than ninety percent of the world. And what I like about Forbidden is that the author isn't trying to convince you that incest is good or bad, she is just telling a tragic love story.
Fortunately for the readers, the characters in Forbidden were extremely fleshed out and developed. This is important because the audience needs to see some sort of catalyst for Lochan and Maya's relationship. It's not enough that they find each other attractive. We have to see what could make two siblings turn to each other for love and comfort in a realistic manner. And we got that. Lochan and Maya are the oldest siblings out of five children and since their mother is always absent, they are the surrogate parents. Feeling like they are taking care of their own children and not their siblings combined with Lochan's severe social phobia sets the backdrop for their relationship. It's only natural that two young adults who have no one else would look to each other to fill that void.
Even though this is a brother and sister in love, you honestly can't help rooting for them to find happiness. And it is obviously that they are only happy with each other. Though I would never go this route, I could understand how Lochan and Maya fell in love, which definitely helped me to sympathize with their plight. The ending is very Romeo-and-Juliet-esque but remains hopeful even in the face of tragedy.
I know that Forbidden is nowhere near everyone's cup of tea, but I would say to give it a chance. I thought it was a wonderful story of love, loss, and the consequences of our actions. And if it makes you uncomfortable, well, isn't that what all good literature is supposed to do?
Rating: 10 out of 10!
Release Date: today!
FTC: Simon & Schuster GalleyGrab
2011/Simon Pulse/464 pages.