actually it reads as if the author wanted to pay homage to smith and wrote this book, to do so. a mysterious thriller, complete with eerie happenings in this school for 'special' children.
plot: the protagonist, faye is sent to a reform school run by dr. mordoch, because she's different. each morning faye and her group (called "family") wake up with red-stained hands from the night before. wth happened?
the painter w/ visions, the loner dude, the jokers and rebels. we have the hidden pasts and the secrets lurking behind every nook and cranny. dictatorial authorities punishing them for every deed done the wrong way etc etc.
etienne's attempt to convey the message of protecting our earth and the nature was slathered on rather thickly and destroyed the so far created suspense and enjoyment of harbinger.
on a positive note: to celebrate the book's release, 24 artists were commissioned to illustrate some of the scenes from the book. look at these lovelies:
cover the cover sums the story of the book in just one picture up: dark, creepy, terrifying, but also with flashes of beauty. i get goosebumps jus2.5/5
cover the cover sums the story of the book in just one picture up: dark, creepy, terrifying, but also with flashes of beauty. i get goosebumps just by looking at this cover.
story daphne (daughter of lilith and lucifer) and a mortal boy, truman meet in hell, because he tried to kill himself. but circumstances allow truman to return to earth. daphne stays in hell. when her brother goes missing, she leaves her home behind to find truman, the last person to see her brother. one thing leads to another and they find out some surprising things..
the good, the bad & the ugly the story read nicely, although sometimes a little stiff.
angels aren't all downright good or evil, more like somewhere in between, just like the demons who are in hell. that added a nice touch. i like my characters with shades of gray. there are even some horror elements (that's a plus point, btw!) (view spoiler)[a baby who can talk and doesn't need food for a month with pointy metal teeth (flashbacks to angelfall) (hide spoiler)]
there's no love triangle (hooray), there were some nice and touching moments and dialogues between the lead characters, but overall it still wasn't enough. maybe i'll feel differently at some point, but right now? nope. also the secondary characters like lilith or beelzebub (view spoiler)[In later Christian and Biblical sources he appears as a demon and the name of one of the seven princes of Hell. [ article] (hide spoiler)] or obie (her brother) were underdeveloped. i wish the author had polished the characters a little bit more, to give them a little shine.
the showdown wasn't much of a showdown. it was pretty ... anticlimactic to tell the truth.
quotes daphne & truman: "I have a toothbrush,” I tell him, trying to make him feel at home. “You can borrow it, if you like.” He just looks at me. Then he smiles a little, shaking his head. “Toothbrushes aren’t the kind of thing people usually share.” “I know. I haven’t used mine yet though, so it’s new. It could be yours instead.”
beelzebub: “What you have to understand is that this is his life, and he’s the one who has to live it. People make decisions, and maybe you don’t always agree, but those choices are still their own.”
flashbacks to daughter of smoke & bone: All I know is that demons are born from chaos. They’re born from rage or blood or fire, or ruined holy water. They’re born from eggs. They come into the world as wisps of smoke or in grotesque forms that splinter off and multiply. There are all kinds of origins, all different ways to be born [..]
love is a bitch: (view spoiler)[I remember kissing Truman on the balcony, and maybe he never said he loved me, but he meant it anyway. And there’s my mother, shrieking in pain when she thought something had happened to her son, and Myra with her sly smile and her dead eyes, grieving for Deirdre in the only way she knew how. My father, holding the razor to Beelzebub’s throat, telling him that it would all be over in an instant. (hide spoiler)]
moloch & truman: “I’m not a holy man,” Moloch said from behind his hand. “I’m not pious, and I’m not good. But if I were, your penance would be to start reaching for the things you want and giving up the things that will destroy you.”
likeable female protagonist on a quest to save her sister. loved the parts about the family. as an individual pal (you know, drinking beer on th3.75/5
likeable female protagonist on a quest to save her sister. loved the parts about the family. as an individual pal (you know, drinking beer on the porch with), i'd have liked him, but as a serious love interest, he was .. bleh so far.
notes on two problematic things: one: female protagonist, miranda relies on male counterpart (whether it be a friend or father figure) for her hap1.5/5
notes on two problematic things: one: female protagonist, miranda relies on male counterpart (whether it be a friend or father figure) for her happiness. she defines herself dependent on males (due to her own family, marak, but also herself). it remains this way till the end, with no change in her nor does she gain much on self-confidence.
two: miranca inflicts injuries (view spoiler)[dunkle mentions it a couple of times (hide spoiler)] on herself when she's (a) lonely, (b) waiting for marek to shower her with attention and heal her, (c) both. okay, got it ... but why didn't dunkle touch upon this issue further? this is a young adult book, as such i'd have hoped that the aspect of miranda participating in self-mutilation would have been addressed at least in the end. what happens? will she continue to inflict injuries or not? does she at least seek help? the reader has no way of knowing.
bantering between the sisters: My mood does not improve at dinner. Mrs. O’Hare’s fish chowder is as awful as I’d anticipated: salty and ill seasone1.5/5
bantering between the sisters: My mood does not improve at dinner. Mrs. O’Hare’s fish chowder is as awful as I’d anticipated: salty and ill seasoned. She’s an excellent housekeeper but a poor cook. I spread fresh butter on thick slabs of sourdough and ignore the bowl in front of me. Tess holds Father’s bowl in her gaze, and a moment later he’s declaring it a wonder. I frown at Tess until Maura kicks me under the table. I kick her back harder, and she jumps in her seat. The bread in my mouth turns to peppery ashes. I gag and reach for my glass of water. “All right, Cate?” Father asks, looking up from his miraculous chowder. “Fine,” I choke. Maura gives an angelic smile. She knows I won’t fight back magically, I never do, but I’m hard-pressed not to lean across the table and slap her.