Thursday, September 1, 2011

Beautiful Creatures Book Review

Beautiful Creatures
Author: Margaret Stohl, Kami Garcia

There were no surprises in Gatlin County.
We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere.
At least, that's what I thought.
Turns out, I couldn't have been more wrong.
There was a curse.
There was a girl.
And in the end, there was a grave.

Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.

Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town's oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.

In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.

I groaned a bit when I realized this story was told from Ethan’s point of view. Having read all the Harry Potter books, I can say that I’m a bit done with the teenage boy point of view. However turns out that after a bit the point of view didn’t bother me. But that’s not to say other things didn’t.

From the very start it is almost painfully obvious this story was written by two authors. I got the impression after a bit that Kami did all the supernatural writing and Margaret the historical bits. Sometimes they weaved them together and other times the writing felt deliberate and boring, almost forced, like the two authors couldn’t collaborate on those sections. There were the area’s where the book really drug and it started to feel like they were writing to fill up space (it’s not a short book) instead of writing to tell a story.

The characters are well developed, not just Ethan and Lena but also the supporting characters like Amma and Link (not the only two). They have rich backgrounds and quirks that helps set them aside and really ingrains their personalities into the reader.

As I have already stated some spots were boring and slow this is a big drawback at the start when a book should really catch a reader. I’m not sure it was slow or boring (since it is a YA a younger reader might find it fine) but the foreshadowing was a bit overdone in my opinion. It was obvious from the get go that Ethan and Lena had a strong connection and I started to feel a bit beat over the head with all the build up and foreshadowing.

A warning to any potential readers, this book has no closure. The second book in the series Beautiful Darkness is already published, Beautiful Chaos (bk 3) comes out October 18th of this year and there is something called The Caster Chronicles that will come out Fall 2012 (I’m not sure if this is a fourth book in the series or all of them published together or something totally different).

I plan on reading Beautiful Darkness when I get a copy but this was not a book that I had to run out and buy right away.

I’m giving it 3 sprinkles of Glitter maybe it will earn more once I read more.

If you are interested in more the Beautiful Creatures web site has a lot of fun things on it. Playlists, book reviews, badges, links to the authors personal blogs and FB etc. So check it out.


Georgie Horn said...

Thanks for following me! Come get you some pudding and pie anytime.

Plumrose Lane said...

It's a funny thing about books, I'm not sure I've ever read one that didn't have something that made me think "oh come, let's get on with it"... even Orwell's 1984. The fact that they put so much behind the characters in this book is a great thing though.