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Friday, 4 December 2009

Review: Beautiful Creatures

Authors: Kami Garcia and Maggie Stohl
Release date: December 2009
Genre: Paranormal Romance / Fantasy
Target Audience: 12+

The blurb from Amazon:
In Ethan Wate’s hometown there lies the darkest of secrets . . . There is a girl. Slowly, she pulled the hood from her head. Green eyes, black hair. Lena Duchannes. There is a curse. On the Sixteenth Moon, the Sixteenth Year, the Book will take what it’s been promised. And no one can stop it. In the end, there is a grave. Lena and Ethan become bound together by a deep, powerful love. But Lena is cursed and on her sixteenth birthday, her fate will be decided. Ethan never even saw it coming.

The Review:
Normally when I read a book, I can't wait to write a review. Even if I didn't enjoy it, I still feel I have something to say. Reviewing Beautiful Creatures is the first time I've felt weirdly at a loss as to what I can say. If you follow me on Twitter, then you might have seen a tweet earlier this week that I was crying at page 469 (I think). This is probably the key to my "reviewer's block". Ethan is dealing with the loss of his mother and it got right inside me. We had a death in our family about two weeks ago and I've been purposely keeping myself busy, busy, busy. Then here I am, reading this amazing book and it opened the flood gates. I've been a bit of a wreck since. Losing someone near Christmas is the worst. But I still must review this book to the best of my ability. It just might not have my usual voice, that's all.

I'll start with Ethan. Reading a book from a guy's point of view was very enlightening. The beginning had me laughing out loud at his viewpoint. I felt like I was getting a glimpse at the secret world of the male mind and I can honestly say I was fascinated. Lena was not so much a character that I connected with as one that intrigued me. I'm still not sure that I know exactly where she is coming from and I think that is probably because Ethan didn't either.

Gatlin was an interesting setting and I loved all the links that were made to Harper Lee's novel To Kill a Mockingbird (which is one of my absolute favourites). Greenbrier was a mystery that I felt still hadn't completely revealed itself by the end of the book. I wonder if this is because the story will continue in the next book and more secrets about the past and Lena's family will be revealed.

The premise of the book captured me from the beginning. The fantasy world created by Garcia and Stohl has me hooked. Sadly, I felt at times that the novel lacked pace. I wanted to story to unfold quicker. Having said this, the ending was incredible and was definitely worth waiting for. It wasn't at all what I expected and I mean that in a really good way. I did not see it coming!

Overall, this book had me laughing out loud at times and crying tears of utter sadness at others. It is a long novel but an intriguing and imaginative one. I really enjoyed reading it.

NB: You can follow the authors on Twitter @mstohl and @kamigarcia

A special thanks to the Wolf Girl for lending me this. You rock!


LovesSam said...

Glad you enjoyed it, I loved this book, didn't manage to read it in one sitting but I sure did try :-)

I Want To Read That said...

Thanks for the review:) I'm really looking forward to reading this one:)

Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

Laughing and crying? What a recommendation! I love when that happens.

Kath said...

For some reason I've been on the fence about this one. I enjoyed your review though and will have to give the book a try! (Sorry about losing your family member, I know that's really tough!)

choco (In Which a Girl Reads) said...

Wow, what a glowing review! I've been wanting to read this book, and now I want to read it even more :)

ReggieWrites said...

OMG Becky! My review is so not better than yours! Yours is more personal and mine's all weird! I LOVE YOUR REVIEWS. DO NOT EVER STOP!

Reggie =)
(Who looks at your blog every. single. day.)

Chicklish said...

Wonderful review - thank you!

Lauren said...

Sorry to hear you've lost someone close, that's always really hard.

Seriously good review - I've been wanting to read this for a while, but I'm just so intrigued now. Luckily, I seem to have no problem with novels that lack pace, so hopefully that won't stand in my way. Sounds pretty cathartic too.

Jenn (Books At Midnight) said...

Great review! Definitely agree that the ending was unexpected.
I'm sorry that you've lost someone recently and my heart goes out to you. However, I don't think your review lacks any of your usual reviewing spunk. :)

The Book Bug said...

sorry! Nice review, I'm looking forward to reading it. I think I might order it for christmas... And that was a really good review for someone with reviewers block, when I have reviewers block i just write "this book was good." :)

Nina said...

Great review, it really makes me want to go and get the book. :)

brizmus said...

Lucky you that this is the first time you've ever gotten reviewers block. It happens to me far too often.
You're the first person I've heard to say this story lacks pace.
glad you loved it nonetheless! I can't wait to read it!

prophecygirl said...

Sorry to hear about the death in your family - hope you're all okay. Great review, I can't wait to get to this one!

Laura Hartley said...

Love the idea of a book written from a guy's perspective - I really need some help understanding the male mind xD Great review!