Book Review: Rage

Book Review: RageRage by Jackie Morse Kessler
Series: Horsemen of the Apocalypse #2
Published by Harcourt Children's Books on April 8th 2011
Pages: 228

Missy didn’t mean to cut so deep. But after the party where she was humiliated in front of practically everyone in school, who could blame her for wanting some comfort? Sure, most people don’t find comfort in the touch of a razor blade, but Missy always was . . . different.

That’s why she was chosen to become one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: War. Now Missy wields a new kind of blade—a big, brutal sword that can cut down anyone and anything in her path. But it’s with this weapon in her hand that Missy learns something that could help her triumph over her own pain: control.


Rage, the second in the Horsemen of the Apocalypse series, was almost too much for me to take. No, it is not poorly written. No, it is not boring. What it is is pure emotion. A teen who cuts herself to deal with emotional pain… only to become a vessel of war.

First off, growing up, my best friend was a cutter. For years, I would watch her come to school with long sleeve shirts or jackets, even if it was 90 degrees outside, just to cover the marks. It was a very hard time for me. Watching her go through this pain. Trying my best to help her as best I could. Only to discover that no matter how hard I tried to reach her, I couldn't. So, when I decided to read Rage, I knew that this could be an emotion read for me. And it was.

My first surprise was that Rage does not glorify cutting, or even make excuses for our main character, Missy, being a cutter. Kessler approaches this subject with the utmost respect and honesty. This is a very hard subject to tackle. And Kessler writes Rage almost with an understanding of what Missy is going through. And that made this all the more difficult to read.

But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Which leaves Rage as a multi-layered novel that at times stole my breath away. If you are looking for a light-hearted read filled with fluff, you will not find it here. Rage is a darkly beautiful novel that haunts you long after you have finished the last page.

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One response to “Book Review: Rage

  1. Marie

    I’m a little behind half way through this one. And I agree, it’s a very emotional read. The most recent thing Missy went through, I couldn’t imagine going through that!

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