Opening Pandora's Box

The Conclusion

Young Adult - General
278 Pages
Reviewed on 06/27/2013
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

In the autumn of 2010, I celebrated the start of my 28th year of teaching by taking on my first seventh grade class ever. Apprehensive about this age group, my lesson plans became a challenge that actually put a much needed spark in class preparation. As a result, my dream of publication was met. With the assistance,insistence, and expert editing of young people who were living what I wrote, my first novel was born. Abby is dedicated to that class of seventh graders who continued to inspire me and my writing long after they moved on to high school. Because of them Raspberry Beret and Opening Pandora's Box completed the trilogy that has allowed me to live a dream.
When diagnosed with MS in 2001 I was uncertain how to put that to good use. Not only has writing about MS in my YA trilogy served as personal therapy, it has also allowed me to share with readers the effect that life-altering diseases has on family members as well. In the words of my main character (and alter-ego) Abigail Van Buren Masterson, "God doesn't throw us more than we can catch." MS has thrown me a few fastballs, but I continue to teach, write, and enjoy the blessing that surround me.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Tanya Owen for Readers' Favorite

"Opening Pandora’s Box" is a book written by Lisa A. McCombs. It is a sequel to "Raspberry Beret" that picks up where Abby hears sirens outside of her house. Something inside her told her she didn’t want to know what had happened. One night, Abby’s life was forever changed. Her best friend, Jesse, was killed by her own escaped convict father. Not only that, but Patrick was killed as well. Abby was no longer the sociable, lovable person she had once been. She was deeply depressed and withdrawn from her family and friends due to this incident. Over time, the “real” Abby starts to slowly emerge as she develops a better sense of who she is and titles her journal entries “Dear Jesse.” Toward the end of the story, she is doing much better and has grown up, ready to face the world as an adult.

"Opening Pandora’s Box" was even better than the prequel. It was much more dramatic, and it kept me on my toes. It definitely made an impact. McCombs' characters were so well-developed in her first book that I felt I knew them. Therefore, reading about Jesse and Patrick’s murders really hit me hard. I found myself concerned about the well-being of Abby and Annette. Both girls had experienced so much heartbreak and trauma in their young lives that you just wanted to reach out and hug them. It was a nice touch seeing how McCombs showed how Abby and Annette transitioned from young, troubled girls into better-adjusted young women. This is a definite must-read book for anyone who loves dramatic stories with a happy ending.

Lisa A. McCombs

Wow! Thank you so much,k Tanya, for the awesome review of Opening Pandora's Box. This, by far, was the most emotional thing I hasve ever written.