Immaculate by Katelyn Detweiler
Release date: May 26, 2015
This ARC was provided by Penguin in exchange for an honest review.
Summary: Mina is seventeen. A virgin. And pregnant.
Mina is top of her class, girlfriend to the most ambitious guy in school, able to reason and study her way through anything. But when she suddenly finds herself pregnant—despite having never had sex—her orderly world collapses. Almost nobody believes Mina’s claims of virginity. Her father assumes that her boyfriend is responsible; her boyfriend believes she must have cheated on him. As news of Mina’s story spreads, there are those who brand her a liar. There are those who brand her a heretic. And there are those who believe that miracles are possible—and that Mina’s unborn child could be the greatest miracle of all.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: I really struggled to rate Immaculate. On the one hand, it was an intriguing, thought-provoking read. On the other, there were a lot of rough moments and things I didn't agree with. In some ways, the story felt very simple and in others, it seemed very much like a YA read. I think the dialogue and actions at times seemed awkward. Towards the end of the book, Mina wants the true story to be told, so Jesse films a documentary of sorts and that just felt off to me. Jesse himself wasn't a bad character, but his interactions with Mina didn't fit quite right in several instances.
I loved how the family dynamics played out and the discussions of trust and believing your daughter/sister/friend/classmate. This book was highly unrealistic (it was more magical realism than contemporary), but it was quite thought-provoking. As a Christian, would I believe that a girl claiming to be a virgin could have a baby? However, overall, I'm not sure Christianity got the right image. Most of the religious people were crazy, screaming, protesters. Others seemed too nonchalant about their faith.
Mina has the baby at the end, and I know this is me being nitpicky, but the baby's name seemed a bit...cliche and a little too close to Mina's own name.
Language was foul on several instances. There was making out and talks of sleeping together or having sex.
The Verdict: I don't know. I finished Immaculate feeling rather unsatisfied. So I'm not sure I'd recommend it.
Will I be adding this book to my library?: No.