Ghetto by M.L. Sparrow (Book Review)

Ghetto - D2BMy name’s Sunny Grace Beaumont. Branded SGB/2/6895/03.12.93. Only child, self-taught computer geek and cancer survivor. Oh, and did I mention my dad’s the President? As you can imagine that’s sometimes a little problematic, especially when I want to sneak out. But it never got me into quite as much trouble as the night I ventured into the Ghetto – don’t ask me why I was there in the first place… it was stupid. Everyone knows that the Ghetto is where hardened criminals are sent to live out the remainder of their lives. At first the men that kidnap me are just as I’d imagine, mean and thoughtless, but slowly I begin to have doubts.

I meet a guy. His name’s Sin, he has no Brand – a crime punishable by death – and he’s the rebel leader. I should hate him… but I don’t. Instead he opens my eyes to a whole other side of the Ghetto, where people are innocent of the crimes they’re accused of and helpless children suffer dreadful poverty. Is it possible that I’ve been lied to my entire life… that the governments been deceiving everyone? And how can I challenge the law my own dad is adamant to uphold?

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**I was provided with a copy by the author in exchange for an honest review!**

When I first read the blurb for this book, I was instantly intrigued. I’ve read my fair share of YA Dystopians, but this one seemed to fit right in line with what I like. It sounded familiar in some ways and new in so many others – I was sure to give it a try. And my gut feeling didn’t betray me! Despite the quick rundown in the summary above, we get eased into the story very nicely. The world-building is well done, without being too over the top or overly complicated, which I can definitely appreciate.

Sunny, the main character, is good girl with a rebellious streak. She is smart and talented, but you instantly know that she is in trouble and definitely out of depth when she enters the Ghetto. From this point on things change fairly quickly. You realise that the system isn’t working and that a lot of people have innocently been convicted. It is nearly impossible not to feel for the people of the Ghetto and their terrible fate and Sunny soon turns from captive to accomplice.

That was the most fun for me to read really! There is this slow part where she realises she doesn’t feel trapped anymore, that she enjoys the company of some of the people and at one point even that she doesn’t want to leave anymore. It’s the same thing that makes the romance so charming. She seriously considers her developing feelings being some sort of Stockholm Syndrome at first and it’s so adorable and funny to see her relationship with Sin, as well as with his men and Maya, develop. All those characters, they just grow on you so fast! Sin especially didn’t really seem like a person who could warm my heart in the beginning, but the more I found out about him, the more I liked him.

There are a couple twists and turns I didn’t see coming and the final pages were gripping, because I had no idea how everything could be resolved. Ghetto is one of the books where I am grateful to have gotten a happy ending though. Especially with dystopians where the whole system is corrupt, I often wonder if something could realistically be changed in the following years and we thankfully become a great conclusion to that question of mine.

Ultimately, I don’t really have anything to complain here! The only thing I sometimes could have done without was the slang spoken in the Ghetto, but that’s just me not being a native English-speaker and sometimes feeling like it disrupts my reading – because I definitely know that a differentiated slang from the city to the Ghetto is a sign of great world-building.

Fazit: 4/5 stars! A thrilling read that will make you want to change all the injustice in the world.


Now, if you want to check out an excerpt of the story yourself to see whether you want to read it, too, you can head over to M’s website:! And if you have already read it for yourself, tell me all about your thoughts in the comments!

25 thoughts on “Ghetto by M.L. Sparrow (Book Review)

  1. I haven’t heard of this book before, but it really sounds intriguing! I’m getting kind of tired of seeing dystopian books around, I feel like they all end up being the same, having the same kind of plot and everything, so it’s been a while since I really ventured into this genre. But with this one, you’re making me want to try! I might add it to my TBR, thank you for this great review, Kat! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ooo, I’m reading this right now. It’s awesome to hear it’s going to be good! Definitely agree that it’s got a very interesting world. YA dystopia has this bad habit of just repeating the same ideas over and over again so it’s pretty rare to find one that’s unique 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • So true! I get tired of the same elements over and over again, even though Ghetto has bits of familiar things I’ve read about before as well. Nonetheless, I had fun and that’s what counts. I hope you’ll enjoy it too!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with you on the importance of building a comprehensive vision of the future so you’ve got me interested in this book. I’m not a fan of when alternate/future worlds invent their own slang though. The word “frack” kind of made me hate Battlestar Gallactica.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s not a heavy accent, but they drop the g a lot and at the end of words and say “me mum” instead of “my mum” and stuff like that. I know that people talk that way, but reading it is always a little irritating for me. As I said, could be because English isn’t my native language though.


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