Sunday, 16 October 2011

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Reviewed by Gina
Date Published: 1st December, 2009
Date Read: 16th October, 2011
Blurb: 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.

Review: I really enjoyed this book. I’ve had it sitting on my shelf for quite a while now (almost two years) and I just decided to pick it up and give it a go. And I’m glad I did because Beautiful Creatures is very different to other YA novels and that is why it is great! It has the forbidden romance that nearly every YA novel has but this one was different to the others. The others sometimes don’t have a strong enough reason to why they can’t be together but the reason in this book was good and it made sense.

Having the POV from a guy’s perspective was great and these are the reasons why:
1.They don’t complain or moan as much as girls do!! I hate that in a book and in a way the moaning makes me dislike the characters.
2.They don’t always talk about how hot the person they love is. Ethan (POV) talked about Lena’s beauty but he didn’t go over the top with it like some people do.
3.You got a different view of the world. Guys see things differently and it was nice to get this view.
4.The whining about their troubles is kept to a minimum.

And I really liked Ethan as a character. He was kind, sweet and really did love Lena enough to do anything to stop her being claimed by evil.
Lena was a character! At times she could be confusing, funny, sad and also completely in love. The character development of Lena was really good and the authors got it just right. I loved the magic that she had and it made me wish I could do the things that she did which were very cool indeed. Ethan and Lena’s love story was beautiful and real. It wasn’t fake, it didn’t have too many steamy scenes (which can be long, boring and not-needed in a YA novel sometimes) and I cannot wait to see where this series takes them.

I have never read a book quite like this one before. I’ve read books about witches but this one was so interesting and different that it grabbed me from the beginning (even though I took a while to finish it as I have been so busy with school and the blog lately). The history of the Casters interested me and I found myself wanting to know more about them. The idea that on their 16th birthdays they are claimed by either the dark or the light (unable to choose which they wanted) was unique and I like that in a book.

Beautiful Creatures is very family orientated and I like that in a book because it makes in seem even more real rather than having the teenagers separate from their families, making them seem as though they are in a world of their own. I loved Amma, who was like Ethan’s mum who had died the year before. Amma was so sweet and I loved the fact that she was into Voodoo which was funny and cool. I also quite liked Macon who was Lena’s uncle and the town “shut-in”. He was interesting to read about and the house...I want a house like that!! I would be changing it around every few hours (which is practically what happens).

Another unique thing about this book is that it often refers to other writer’s work. For example, To Kill a Mockingbird is mentioned a lot in this book because the town is so much like the one in the novel (which I read last year for school). A closed community where everyone is the same and doesn’t like people who are different and aren’t like them. It was different.

Overall this book wasn’t your average YA novel and that’s what I like about it. I love books that aren’t the same as all the others out there and that grab your attention with their originality. I have the second one waiting for me on my shelf and I cannot wait to delve into this series in the near future :) 3.5/4 stars!!