I got sent this book by the publisher to review on my blog and at first I wasn't even really sure that I wanted to read it. Forbidden is about a brother and a sister who end up falling in love after their mother leaves them to live with her new boyfriend. When I heard it was about incest I was a little shocked and wondered how I would ever get up the courage to read it, but after reading a few glowing reviews I decided that I would at least try.
Lochan is 17 and Maya is 16 and they have been the parents in their family since they were 11 and 12. They have to look after themselves, their 3 younger siblings, the house, pay bills, do grocery shopping etc and they only see their mother once every few months. Amidst all of this, they become isolated from their friends whilst they try to hide the fact that their mother isn't around - they know that if this gets out their family will be separated and put into care. This isolation leads them to try to get comfort from each other and, although they know it is wrong and try to fight it, they end up falling in love with each other.
This is the type of book that really gets you thinking about everything that you have ever believed and for that alone I highly recommend it. Although everybody knows incest is wrong, the story is so well written that you end up falling in love with Maya and Lochan and hope that they do find happiness - whatever this may mean for them. It is impossible to read this book without feeling the pain and anguish that Maya and Lochan feel, both over the situation with their mother and their growing feelings for each other.
For me, the shocking parts involved the way that the five children are neglected by their own mother and you can't help but wonder if Maya and Lochan had grown up in a more stable family if things would have still turned out the same way.
Once I started Forbidden I was instantly pulled into the story and I can honestly say that I don't think I have been so emotionally invested in a book as I was in this one. It is a rollercoaster ride of emotions and I will admit to shedding tears a few times. The ending, although I could see it coming, was one of the most heart-breaking things I have ever read.
I loved this book but it is difficult to recommend as it covers a lot of difficult topics. If you enjoy reading books that suck you in emotionally, that push you out of your comfort zone, and that make you really think about the world, then this one is for you!