The Broken Circle is perfect for anyone who has ever been intrigued by figures of death (like the Grim Reaper, or the Underworld), enjoys YA fiction, and also likes boarding school settings.
Adam wants nothing more than to be a “normal” teen, but his reality is quickly leaking normal. Afraid to sleep because of the monster that stalks his dreams, Adam’s breakdown at school in front of his crush Sarah lands him in the hospital. As he struggles to cope with his day-to-day life, Adam can only vaguely comprehend some sort of future. His mother died when he was only four and his eccentric father–who might be an assassin, a voodoo god, the reincarnation of the Buddha, or something even stranger–is never available when Adam really needs him. Even his paranoid grandfather, who insists that people are “out to kill the entire family,” is no help.
Adam’s life takes an even weirder turn when a fat man with a gold tooth and a medallion confronts his father regarding Adam’s supposed “True Destiny.” Adam is soon headed toward a collision with life, death, and the entities charged with shepherding souls of the newly dead, all competing to control lucrative territories where some nightmares are real and psychopomps of ancient legends walk the streets of North America.
What amazed me the most about The Broken Circle was the storytelling. Powers has this cyclical storytelling that balances confusion and revelation. Alternating half chapters slowly reveal a story, in a very funny way, and we are not sure in which way it relates to the present moments. When it does come together, it’s a small epiphany that ties the entire story together. There’s also a wonderful blend of myths and legends with the story itself.
At time it’s a little confusing, because our protagonist is in the dark a lot, but what it has in confusion, it makes up for with unique narrating style. It is easy to get wrapped up in his narrating attitude and manner of speaking (and the alternating chapter are narrated well too).
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review from the publisher.