So I’m going to do one of three book reviews that I have been meaning to do in one blog post. Hope there’s no brain overload. Oh, and FYI: I will be posting a review of the Green Lantern movie sometime here soon as well.
Beautiful Creatures-Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl
This book is typical and not typical all of current young adult fantasy books. Yeah. Let me explain. Typical: supernatural events surrounding a teenage couple forbidden to be together. Untypical: Most young adult fantasy books have the boy be mysterious and aloof, and the girl pines away for him. Garcia and Stohl flipped the script! The girl is mysterious and aloof and the dude pines away for her!
My friend Destiny got me interested in this book and its sequel, Beautiful Darkness, via text message of the books themselves. The covers are really, well, beautiful. It captures your attention with the unique script and black on black images.
This book is about Ethan Wate, a guy stuck in small town Gatlin, SC and dreaming of a girl he’s never met, until she suddenly shows up at his high school. Lena Duchannes is the new girl in town trying to keep not only her emerging powers under control and a secret, but also a curse that has haunted her family for generations is fast approaching and is waiting for claim her. When they encounter each other in the rain on the way to Lena’s home, the town’s oldest and most infamous plantation, is when they both discover that the other is not a dream but real and Ethan is determined to uncover the connection between them.
…and then all sorts of teenage drama and supernatural craziness goes down.
My favorite part about this book: NO VAMPIRES! Ah! Thank you Ms. Garcia and Ms. Stohl for not writing about vampires. Don’t get me wrong, I have read and enjoyed books with vampires in them, but there’s something about the way they are written in young adult books that just bother me. That said and done with, I enjoyed the creation of the Caster World. Mysterious and powerful, I read the Casters in the book like witches with a few shared abilities, but each individual caster had a special ability all their own. Lena is a Naturalist and her Dark Caster cousin Ridley is a Siren. Another interesting twist is Lena’s uncle Macon, an Incubus who is suppose to be a Blood Incubus (explained in the second book) but chooses to be a dream and memory eating Incubus. Macon Ravenwood and Ridley were for me the most enjoyable characters off the book. Macon is described through out the first part of book as some crazy old koot but then come of find out his so smooth and suave. And Ridley, well, she’s just a really well written and fun to read bad girl. Garcia and Stohl did a great job weaving mystery and romance together than make it a page turner.
However, I did take issue with how long it took to get the show on the road with the plot. I understand, we have many characters to introduce and set up and blah blah blah. But I was desparete to get on with the mystery. As much as I enjoyed the idea of the Kelting, a form of telepathic communication that Ethan and Lena used, it got a little annoying with the broken and unfinished sentences. Also, I felt that the mystery behind the Ravenwoods and Duchannes took to long to unravel and then right near the end it just exploded. And my final complaint: Ethan Wake is a male version of Bella Swan from the Twilight books. Both are clingy to their supernatural loves and both have a special connection/ability. Granted, Ethan is a Mortal who can Kelt (it’s only reserved for Casters) and Bella could block Edward’s mind reading. But still! The same. Ethan was just a little less annoying than Bella.
I enjoyed this book. Even though it took a while for the plot to get going, once it did, I couldn’t stop turning the pages. Would I recommend it? Yeah, it’s a good read. But be patient while you experience all of Ethan Wake’s complaining about Gatlin and high school life.