Book Review: Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

hushhushTitle: Hush, Hush
Author: Becca Fitzpatrick
Genre: YA fantasy, paranormal fiction
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Source: ARC from Shelf Awareness
First line: Chauncey was with a farmer’s daughter on the grassy banks of the Loire River when the storm rolled in, and having let his gelding wander in the meadow, was left to his own two feet to carry him back to the chateau.

I recently read on one blog or another that fallen angels are the new vampires. It seems this could be the case, since while reading Becca Fitzpatrick’s Hush, Hush, I received Fallen by Lauren Kate, which has a similar premise. Also, the YA world seems to be sticking to a formula that works: smart girl is attracted to dangerous boy, and then proceeds to do a lot of not-smart things.

In Hush, Hush, the smart girl is Nora Grey, a smart high school student living with her mom. The dangerous boy is Patch, her new biology partner. (Yes, biology partner – more on that later.) He seems to know things about her that he shouldn’t, but Nora can’t find out anything about him. He has no school records and turns all her questions around. Nora knows she should stay clear, but there’s just something about him…

In the meantime, her best friend, boy-crazy Vee, continually wants Nora to double-date with her and Elliot and Jules, two more mysterious boys who seem to have a dangerous past. When Nora becomes the victim of mysterious attacks, she has to figure out who’s after her – is it Elliot or Patch?

Now, I know that this plot line is very popular with teens lately. And yes, the story was engaging enough to keep me reading. But I had a few beefs with Hush, Hush.

First of all, there were many parallels to the storyline of Twilight by Stephenie Meyer. I know Meyer wasn’t the first author to write a smart girl falls for bad boy book, but there has to be a way to take a formula that works and make it original. (Case in point: Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr, which is a completely original take on the familiar theme.) But in some ways, Fitzpatrick has taken the Twilight formula and plugged in fallen angels for vampires. They were even paired up in biology, just like Bella and Edward.

The other thing that bothered me, and in hindsight bugs me about Twilight, is that you have an otherwise smart girl who lets all of her intelligence fly out the window because of a boy. Yes, I loved Twilight. But at the time that I read it, I hadn’t read a YA book (other than Harry Potter) since I fit the demographic. Now that I’ve immersed myself in the world of YA lit, I find that this formula has gotten repetitive. And maybe it’s because I’m a mom, but there were many times while reading Hush, Hush that I wanted to reach into the book and shake Nora for the foolish decisions she was making.

Having said all that, I still think that Hush, Hush will probably be a big hit with teen readers. There is something about teenage girls that relates to this storyline, and Fitzpatrick certainly knows how to write romantic tension.

I was talking about this book on Twitter with some other book bloggers, and we decided that it would be nice to see a smart guy falls for bad girl story for a change. 🙂

Disclosure: An ARC of Hush, Hush was provided to me by Shelf Awareness for the purpose of review. The above link is an Amazon Affiliate link. If you click on the link and then purchase anything, I receive a small percentage.

This entry was posted in fantasy, paranormal fiction, YA fiction and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

60 Responses to Book Review: Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

  1. Sandy
    Twitter: youvegottaread

    I think the cover is amazing, but yes it does seem very Twilight-ish in plot. I know it sounds pretty stuffy, but I hate that this type of book is what is setting the example for teens these days. I won’t let my daughter read Twilight yet, because I just shudder at the whole smart girl throwing it all away and wanting to kill herself over a boy! Ugh. They get all that soon enough!
    .-= Sandy´s last blog ..Lena – Jacqueline Woodson =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Sandy – I agree – I love the cover! And I did let my almost 13-year-old daughter read the Twilight series, but we had lots of conversations about the choices Bella makes and the difference between infatuation/obsession and true love. I didn’t hate this book, but not sure I liked it enough to pick up the sequel next year.

  2. Amy S. says:

    I think the smart boy falling for the bad girl storyline is all great but I’m sure that more girls are reading and that’s the audience that’s buying these books and they want this silly fantasy. It’s sad. I read all the Twilight books but do not understand the mass adoration and following by young girls. It’s almost upsetting.
    .-= Amy S.´s last blog ..Embroderies: book review =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Amy – I agree – but since so many adults are reading YA, and most adult women read books with either male or female protagonists, why not switch it up a bit?

    • anonymous says:

      First of all, it wasn’t a Smart Boy, falling for a Bad Girl. It was quite the other way around, but only on the surface. If someone actually got the right message out of this story it is about a good girl, and a good boy , who just got on the wrong path, and the girl helped him into a full potential. In that of when they fell in love. Im 15, and I don’t see this to be some silly fantasy. I know what is real and fake, and what is right and wrong. And if it wasn’t fantasy, serving as an escape to some real life problem, and we were all reading what REALLY happens in the real world…NO ONE would be able to enjoy that, because they see it everyday.

  3. carol
    Twitter: carolsnotebook

    I wasn’t a fan of Twilight, but it sounds like the author definitely knows who her audience is.
    .-= carol´s last blog ..Teaser Tuesday =-.

  4. Kathy says:

    I think this is the first review I’ve read that hasn’t just gushed over the book. I have a feeling I’d feel more like you.
    .-= Kathy´s last blog ..Reminder: That’s How I Blog! =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Kathy – I know, after reading other reviews, I can see I’m definitely in the minority.

  5. Michael OCD says:

    Not to sound completely sexist here, but it’s comforting to see the beginnings of a female backlash towards these YA books that have this “sameness” and clichéd themes/storyline.

    Unfortunately, it’s this clichéd sameness that young girls are craving right now. I’ve asked a few of my friends about it, and the unanimous response is that there is a certain amount of safe comfort in the familiarity and similarities.

    And yes, I agree, having these two characters meet in a biology class…that’s just blatant. At least she could have had them meet in history, or geography, or maybe even choir or something.
    .-= Michael OCD´s last blog ..One of Three =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Michael – I hope that young girls are smart enough to read and enjoy something that doesn’t fit the same formula if it’s published! As a homeschooling mom, I try to steer my daughter toward a variety of genres, authors, etc. It doesn’t always work, but I’ll keep trying because a book with a plot that is comforting and familiar isn’t necessarily a good book. 🙂

      • Michael OCD says:

        I think familiarity is okay to a certain degree.

        As a self-professed geek, when I return to a certain fantasy or science fiction series, there is a certain comfort reading stories set in worlds I already know – so I can’t fault anyone for doing that.

        It’s these recycled plots that we have to battle, and the best way to do it is by what you’re doing now. No, it may not always work, but the fact that it works some of the time is a spark of hope. Plus, homeschool kids tend to have better reading comprehension skills and level than the average bear – so just keep at it, the rewards will make it worth it.
        .-= Michael OCD´s last blog ..One of Three =-.

      • may says:

        I understand what you mean that is why i’d rather pick FALLING or SIHVER for a great book to seat down and read.

  6. Michelle says:

    I liked this one. Mainly because I really am a sucker for a bad boy! Patch really worked for me (singularly) and his attraction to Nora worked as well. I agree, however that Nora’s character was a bit lopsided. I think there might have been a way to write her having this attraction to him while being inquizetive about the situation and still having a brain. I’d have to really analyze the moments where Nora loses her common sense and devise how it could have been done differently. But then teens probably really don’t care about that….they just want to see the conflict and the danger and the romance, the other stuff is just stuff.
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..Sunday Salon – November 1 =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Michelle – I think that my opinion of this one may have suffered because I read it so soon after Wicked Lovely, which I thought was a fantastic story and was well-written.

  7. Serena (Savvy Verse & Wit)
    Twitter: SavvyVerseWit

    I have not read this one yet, but it is on my shelf. Thanks for the honest review. I heard the ARC has a different ending than the finished hardcover.
    .-= Serena (Savvy Verse & Wit)´s last blog ..Interview with Jane Odiwe, Author of Willoughby’s Return =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Serena – a friend on Twitter sent me the link to the new ending. I didn’t find it all that different, although it seemed to leave it more open for the sequel.

  8. heidenkind says:

    I haven’t read this one yet, either, although I plan to. I have encountered a few books that were so blatantly tweaks of Twilight that I just couldn’t read them. How derivative can we get, people? I don’t mind formulas–I read romance novels, for god’s sake–but I agree with you, there has be some bend or twist that makes the story seem original.

    As for who said angels were the new vampires, I believe that was Amy from My Friend Amy. 🙂
    .-= heidenkind´s last blog ..Prehistoric Art: The Symbolic Journey of Humankind =-.

  9. Becky says:

    I actually really love the twilight but do have to agree that some of the messages it sends to young girls is a little messed up. I allowed my 13 year old to read this book, but we too had discussions about what was normal and very wrong with it. My daughter liked the books also, but really is more fascinated with sci fi, or fantasy fiction
    books….”Sea Clearwater” by Selene Cardenas is her newest favorite. It is filled wizards, fairies, gentle and violent creatures, black benders and water benders. I actually prefer she read these types of books… not filled with unrealistic romance.
    .-= Becky´s last blog ..beckybooks: I am so sick! This sucks! =-.

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  11. Alita says:

    I was thinking about the smart boy/bad girl idea while I was writing my review for The Hunger Games just now, and I think that this one comes close to that idea. The girl is still smart but definitely surly and mysterious. And she doesn’t lose her head and get all silly when the guy comes along.

    I haven’t read Hush Hush yet, but I appreciate reviews like this that prompt so much discussion.
    .-= Alita´s last blog ..Book #39 – The Hunger Games (final thoughts) =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Alita – you’re right – I hadn’t thought of Hunger Games that way. 🙂

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  13. Fyrefly says:

    it would be nice to see a smart guy falls for bad girl story for a change.

    Maybe Paper Towns by John Green? It fits that description, although in most other ways it’s very different from the Twilight/Hush Hush formula.
    .-= Fyrefly´s last blog ..Andrea Barrett – Ship Fever: Stories =-.

  14. S. Krishna
    Twitter: skrishna

    I felt like Lauren Kate’s Fallen had the same problem as Hush Hush – too close to a Twilight formula. I haven’t read Hush Hush, but I have it to review. I think I’ll put it off a little longer.
    .-= S. Krishna´s last blog ..Sunday Salon =-.

    • CarrieK
      Twitter: booksandmovies

      Swapna – I decided to wait a while to pick up Fallen because I thought it was going to be similar. I think it will bother me even more if I read them too close together.

  15. Millie-lee says:

    hiya i am 13yr old girl and i love to read this type of books, i think the book is great and i love the twilight books too
    can’t wait wait for hush hush book 2 to come out
    and if i find a guy like patch i know i will be in love with him how can you not be!!!
    love the plot and patch i think the cover makes him look fit and i love it so much (patch i love you ) fallan angles love it.

    you have to read night world lots of fit boys
    .-= Millie-lee´s last blog ..Book Review: Best American Nonrequired Reading 2008 =-.

  16. Becca says:

    I myself have read the Twilight series and Hush, Hush.
    Being a young adult myself, I enjoy these types of books, but I find them to be a bit redundant after a while.
    And quite personally, I think Wicked Lovely was better.

  17. Krissy says:

    hey there! i’m a 17 year old girl and i’ll be honest…i definitley thought twilight and fallen was a waste of my time. im so sick of reading books where the girls are so vapid and bland and make stupid decisions and the guys are so controlling/stalkerish and “perfect”. not to mention the authors takes on high school – high school is NOTHING like that! totally unbeleivable! not all teen girls are vapid boy crazy and completley spineless…okay. end rant lol.

  18. shayne says:

    hey im 12 and when i saw hush hush i wanted it. For christmas i got 16 books and i left hush hush to last because u no the saying best to last. i finnished it in two days because it was so goodddd. I love hush hush. hehe and Patch is such a badass and thats wat i love about him hehehe. my rating is 5 out of 5

  19. shayne says:

    i used to be a twilight freak. but i started reading other books and i think they are so much better hehehe. so i say twilight is good but no girl should be obsessed with it because its not the best. One of my friends read twilight she was obsessed with it. she read another book said it was better but now she is in love with jacob. she talks about him all the time and it annoys me. she doesn’t even like the book or taylor lautner she just likes jacob and so i think she is stupid for that

  20. shyenne says:

    I LOVED HUSH HUSH. i am a freak for fantasy’s i loved twilight the mortal insturments and adored this book if they made 20 movies i would buy them all but i didnot see how it was at all like twilight Edwards plan wasn’t to kill bella he wasn’t really a bad boy and bella was alone and unhappy nothing like nora was happy with her life patch just showed her a new life that she took all in all no offence to who ever wrote this blog but i think your dead wrong

  21. liana says:

    I absolutely adored hush hush. I thought it was a great book with a great storyline. Reading just the first chapter pulled me in and made me want to find out more about patch and nora. I believe that Nora was a great character who was brave and courageous. I do not understand you other bloggers who think that she is lopsided etc. I also think that patch is so sexy and fits the perfect description for a bad boy. I see no resemblence in this book and these characters to twilight. Now ok maybe this whole love fantasy thing has come along in alot of books but hey you know what? everybody is into fictional books including me and i think their great and i am into this whole thing. But i think that everyone here is missing out on one big key point.You guys are forgetting the author. To believe that one normal average woman can come up with a book so outrageous, thrilling,exciting and just down right awesome is just amazing. So i think that we all should give becca some credit.

    • Willow says:

      i do agree Hush,Hush i think was the best book ever written. In Hush,Hush i feel it is a totally different setting from Twilight. Yes there is a good girl and a bad boy, but it’s not at all written in any way shape or form like Twilight!

  22. Kayla says:

    hands down hush, hush was the best book ever!! I love the part in the book when patch wipes nora’s lipgloss off me and my friend joke about it all the time. Becca fitzpatrick deffinitly knows how to write great books! i’ve read Hush,Hush 4 times and i havent gotten sick of it yet! I CANNOT WAIT FOR “CRESCENDO”!!!!! omigosh thats all i can talk about! Eeeeep im so excited!!!

  23. Mairead says:

    I wasn’t a fan of Hush Hush. Itt was okay, but with all the reviews raving about it, I found it a bit anti-climatic.
    The ending bugged me, because it made it seem like Nora was making a brilliant, perfectly rational decision, and she definitely wasn’t. I don’t like that someone migh t read this book and thing that what she does is acceptable. it’s not.
    However, Beautiful Creatures has a Smart guy falling for a girl, who may or may not turn bad. It’s interesting. I’m eagerly awaiting the sequel after the shocking conclusion to the first one.

  24. Chelsea says:

    Its just a book! Books are books! They are there for you to read when your bored or if you just want to read. Most of them are fiction and not at all real. I’m a teenager and trust me we teenagers dont belive that stuff like Twilight and how Bella falls in love with Edward and all that is going to happen to us. Stephine Meyer wrote those books to entertain us not to make us think some guy like Edward is going to come around and sweep us off our feet!

  25. Chelsea says:

    By the way I LOVE hush, hush. I love romantic books that are fantasy and all of that. I just dont get why people freak out about boks like twilight and dont let their kids read them. They are just books and will never happen.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Truly I think all of you degraders are a bunch of squares that aren’t open to change. You should all just let your children read this. Yes they are teenagers and they all think the same to an extent. Even so, in the end all these book are, are fantasy. True to their name, your kids will know that they are fantasy. From expierence I know the truth myself. Plus I know all of you are shaking your heads at me in fury saying to yourself, “one day she’ll understand”. Maybe, but I think not. Even in this book Nora knew that she was being stupid for doing what she was doing, she said so herself. However to her instinct, she knew that she was safe with Patch, and she was. In these times these books serve as an escape, and that is exactly what they are. But when the has been read and reality strikes we know that vampires and this view of angels aren’t real and we move on. We go to school we have our crushes and eventually we fall in love and move on. Every once in a while we may come back to them but the book’s story ends and ours doesn’t. These books are fun. They shouldn’t cause us to murder, drink blood, or drop our entire live for something stupid to never pick it back up again.

  27. georgia says:

    i read the twighlight books when i was 12 and they are fine. And all this stuff about the girls throwing there lives away is so stupid. It’s a book it doesn’t have to be realistic

    • anonymous says:

      yes i know thats what im saying, as long is the person is old enough to understand and differentiate between fantasy and reality, then they should be able to read whatever they want ,within reason

  28. Bernice says:

    ugh TWILIGHT! Everyone compares all these teenage love to stories to damn twilight.

    • anonymous says:

      bernice I AGREE! i think that the ONLY thing twilight and these books have in common is that they are science fiction, and that they are supernatural love stories. but the girl you replies to was not comparing twilight and hush hush its just that in my comment i mentioned vampires and everything in between a bunch of the moms on here had commented on how this book was too inappropriate for their children and i had to disagree. georgia was only agreeing with me. in my opinion hush hush and twilight are as different as daylight and dark. one day …hopefully twilight will be overplayed and done and books like these will live on 🙂

  29. Alyssa says:

    I think that our children and teenagers would be alright with reading this stuff, as long as they understand the fact that its a book. I think that the Twilight and Hush, Hush series is pretty good and that if our children want to read a book, let them. There are bigger things to worry about then them reading a book, like drugs for example. Thats just my opinion.

  30. tylar says:

    Well, I’m eleven i’ve read both the twilight series and Hush Hush series (so far that is since Crescendo leaves you on a bit of a cliffhanger) and Pretty little liars even though that has not been included in this topic yet but it fits and i dont see why you guys are freaking out. I mean my mom was the one who introduced me to this series and yeah whats the dealio??

    • hannah says:

      only over bearing mothers really care :\
      theres nothing wrong with showing this book to your kid. in fact it seems like it was made for teens (i found it in the TEEN section). i dont see why people are freaking out but they really shouldnt 🙁

  31. hannah says:

    there should be a movie made for this amazing book. me and my friends are absolutly in love with it (and one of my friends says shes gona marry patch but hes for nora only!!). no book could top it. hands down its the best book out there and most likley best movie (if its made! 😀 )

  32. Lilly says:

    I see a pattern here, all the preteens find this book brilliant and all the teenagers and adults are a bit skeptical. I’m 14 and I’m still like reading these books but I know how good it makes you feel fantazising about and Edward or Daniel or Patch turning up at your high school and falling for you. The thing is its not going to happen so and if you actually look at the books there actually not that brilliant (although at first the strategy of the something preteen girls can relate too seemed pretty good).
    And, I agree! Why can’t the girl be perfect and a fallen angel instead of a girl who turns so unrealistically dumb!

  33. Sarah Grace Ackerman says:

    I just wanted to say that teenagers connect with these kinds of books because we act like this and mom’s really are there for the guiding hand so of course you’re going to want to shake her for being foolish, we all feel that way and that’s why we read it. Along with that the whole point of a fiction book is FICTION, it doesn’t have to be something completely realistic to make it a good book and I honestly think that teenagers can enjoy this book, I think that just because they meet in biology has no problem with Twilight, its completely different. It’s just like taking inspiration from different authors and as a writer myself, she and so many other authors have inspired me, and I think that’s what really counts. What we gather from the meaning of the book, not if its like Twilight. In my opinion I think that this whole girl falling for bad boy is a classic and is not an issue to be carried on.
    And P.S. This book is waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay better then Twilight!

  34. I like this book and its sequel and i hope the third book will be great…

  35. Karissa says:

    I really loved her books! Becca Fitzpatrick is a wonderful author, I hope she will make movies of the hush hush series!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    i<3 hush hush

  36. Des says:

    Is hush hush going to be a movie?

  37. allison says:

    i dont usually read dont get into it that much but this book i just cant put it down i have read the first on and now cant wait to read the other books that she have wrote i really think this books are really good

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  39. Mal.. says:

    who knows anything about film by this book?