Nightshade was awesome. I read 130 pages in one day. I couldn't put it down. Wolfsbane? Yeah...
I read 5 chapters a day so I could get it done in the week I had left with it from the library. I wish I didn't have to endure that much of it at once.
Pages 1-80: Calla and Shay look like idiots, not figuring even the simplest things out by themselves while Silas(the freakishly racist scholar) tells them about their real history.
If you thought Calla was slow in the first book(and really, sometimes I was wondering that myself), you will think she's a complete moron in this one. There were many times that Silas would say something and I think to myself, "Ah, that's interesting, that means this is this." It won't even be something that I think they're hinting at, it's just something that they explain. Only Calla and Shay don't get it, they need it to be explained further.
And speaking of Shay, he has probably 30% of the brain power he had in the first one. In Nightshade he was figuring stuff out in an instant, knowing things that a normal person wouldn't know. In Wolfsbane he's a complete idiot. He's not quite as slow as Calla, but he's getting there.
Spoilers from this point on!
The thing that drove me crazy the most was the whole Monroe and Ren situation. As soon as they mentioned that Monroe and Ren's mom had a thing, I knew without a doubt that Ren was his son. It wasn't a, "Oh, I bet this is what happened, I'm almost sure!" No, it was, "Gee, could they make that any more obvious?" And what a surprise, I was right! Oh, wait, not a surprise. Because there were no surprises in this book.
And then, even when Emile pretty much says that Monroe is Ren's father, Calla STILL DOESN'T GET IT!!! I wanted to strangle her.
Emile: "He's almost as stupid as his father!" Calla: I didn't get it. Why would Emile be calling himself stupid? It just didn't make sense. And why was he staring at Monroe when he said it?
Now, those aren't exact quotes, but the big picture is the same. Let's see, Monroe says he had a thing with Ren's mom, he's been acting as protective as a father, and Emile implies that Monroe is Ren's father. I wonder what that means? *face-palm*
And then the one time that Ren is shown, he's ten times the douche he was in the first book. I mean, I get that he's messed up, he's been tortured and he lost the girl he loves. But come on. He tries to rape her? No, that's just stupid! I know he went a little too far in Nightshade, but she was kinda asking for it in that one. She was leading him on every time she saw him, only to regret it when she was with her precious Shay. In this book Ren is just a monster who's trying to force her to be his.
And then there's the cover. Why, oh why, does Andrea want us to think that Calla is a stripper so badly? I get the whole wolf-crouching-ready-to-attack thing, but that's not how it comes off. It's more like I'm-a-seductive-chick-who-wants-to-sleep-with-you-for-money.
I'm still gonna read Bloodrose, partly to see if it gets better, but mostly just to finish the series.(less)
While I sit at my computer preparing to write this review, I ask myself one question.
Is my mom ever going to get home so we can go to Taco Bell?
I'm li...moreWhile I sit at my computer preparing to write this review, I ask myself one question.
Is my mom ever going to get home so we can go to Taco Bell?
I'm like a savage animal. I need my Taco Bell. I'm starving. But not for this book. No, no. Never for this book. If I was starving to read this book... well, I'd be a Twilight fan. Because that's what this is; the werewolf version of Twilight. If you look at my rating for Twilight, you'll see that(in my eyes, at least) this is a very, very bad thing.
This book is full of clichés; Celeste is the most popular girl in school, her friends flock around her, she's dating the guy that's handsome "by any girl's standards" and also happens to be the star of the football team, she scoffs at the unpops... that is, until she meets one boy.
And you wanna know why? Is it because he's nice and caring? Because he can get her to see through the stupid, stupid wall the Eastsiders and Westsiders have put up?
If you said either of those things, you're wrong. The former comes later, the latter never comes. The real reason: he's hot. Yup, that's right. She likes him because he's hot. Oh my, that hasn't been done a thousand times before!
So here we have our shallow, stupid, cliché main character. Maybe Brandon, this Westside guy who is apparently the hottest thing ever, will be better.
No such luck. He's also stupid and cliché. His "protect the wildlife" routine may be cute to some girls, but to me it's just stupid. And did I mention cliché? Yes, I'd rather be dating a guy who shoots and kills Bambi to provide for his family than one who freaks out if you dare to hunt. And then eats steak.
And then there are her friends. The attention-seeking Abby; the naive Ivy. Two more ignorant and annoying characters. These people claim to be her friends, yet Celeste is terrified that if she goes out with a Westsider they'll ditch her. Um... what? Tell you what, if my two best friends abandoned me for going out with a boy they didn't like, I wouldn't be scared of hurting they're feelings. I'd be smacking their faces for being fake friends for however many years.
And that's just the start of it- the characters, plot line, and their flaws. The writing itself is just horrendous. I've read some bad books before, but this... I think this tops them all. It's like her paragraphs don't have any structure; and neither to her sentences, while we're on that. It's like she right whatever pops into her head at that instant and doesn't bother with editing. At least with Twilight and Vladimir Todd it was somewhat interesting. This was a piece of crap. Examples of awful writing:
Page 127 "Wow, I thought. That was kind of like when I volunteered at the nursing home. Brandon was putting his grandparents' needs in front of his own." (Because apparently we were too stupid to make that connection- instead she had to point it out to us like we're little five-year-olds.)
Page 130 "I needed to see Brandon and I wouldn't fight it any longer." (GAG! At this part, she's hanging out with her friends and she ditches them to see B.)
Page 266 "I felt a huge pain in my soul whenever Brandon closed the door." (Yes, it does way "whenever.")
Speaking of souls, this lady needs to stop using that word! It feels like if she wants to be as passionate as can be she doesn't use creative words to paint pictures; she just uses "soul." I gazed soulfully in to Brandon's eyes, or I felt it down to my soul. This. Is. Crap. You're a seventeen-year-old that acts like a fourteen-year-old. You did not just feel that kiss with all your soul.
At one point she goes on and on for about 2 pages about being in love with all her soul- but then she asks her sister how she knows she's in love. What?! This girl is so stupid. After her sister tells her she's never been in love Celeste is so surprised... her sister has been with tons of guys, surely at least a few where her one true love? Stop being so ignorant, idiotic main character! You're sister is a whore that sleeps around. What she experiences isn't love; it's lust.
On page 158 she says maybe B's not a werewolf, maybe because she loves him she imagined him that way. I'm way overusing this because the story demands for it, but... what?! You moron. Why would you see him as a beast because your in love? Oh, wait. Because he's not a beast! That's right. This so called "werewolf" turns into this half-man, half-beast "gorgeous" animal! When they made in into a kind of Wolfman, not fully wolf, I thought that was cool and unique. Not that I dislike when they transform all the way, it's just nice to see something different. But then they made him out to be this sexy beast that she can't resist. He grows a goatee!!! Not even all covered in hair. Just long hair, hairy legs, arms, and chest and a goatee. Couldn't even make the werewolf part cool.
And the werewolf part? She needs to get her facts straight. She kept saying "werewolf form" and talked about when he turned into a werewolf on the full moon. News flash: your boyfriends a werewolf. He doesn't turn into a werewolf every now and then, HE IS ONE. Just because it's not a full moon doesn't mean he's human. He's still a werewolf. At one point she says "werewolf form" four times in three paragraphs. Two of the paragraphs are only one sentence long!
And what's with her saying the only cure is a silver bullet? She supposedly researched it and that's the only thing she could find. Well, she must be the most terrible person at research. I pity all her school essays. I meant, just look here and you'll find other ways!
On page 219 Brandon and Celeste are out in the woods, Brandon being in him "werewolf form." He has some steaks roasting, and Celeste wonders where he got them. Only he doesn't know, they were just there. Celeste is horrified- she can't imagine her precious Brandon ripping into Bambi's face and killing and eating him... but it's okay, because Brandon was just joking. She got them out of his grandparents' freezer.
So, let me get this straight. It's bad if he kills the deer and you're not sure if you can date him after that, but as long as someone else kills it, that's okay? Idiot.
So, the moral of this story is, stay away from this book!!! I'm probably going to read the second one because this one ended in a cliffhanger and I just want to see if the author has actually learned something from her mistake of a first book and written an awful book instead of an almost unreadable one. Probably not, but then it's only one more book, not like seven. So we'll see.
The few goods points:
This novel was a detestable scramble of pages thrown together, but I have to point out the few goods points. First, the phone call between Celeste and her friends. I don't remember what page but I wrote it down in my notebook at one of the good ones. Her friends get so confused because Celeste is talking to them and Brandon at the same time. They made me chuckle.(less)
This book is not one of Robin McKinley's best. I opened with high expectations because I've read Sunshine and Beauty by the same author. This book, ho...moreThis book is not one of Robin McKinley's best. I opened with high expectations because I've read Sunshine and Beauty by the same author. This book, however, was sourly disappointing. The first story wasn't that good, but I thought it would get better.
Like the other two books I've read by McKinley(and like someone mentioned below), it needs more dialogue. There are so many pages that I got bored and stopped paying attention without even realizing it- then I read the page again and the same thing happened.
Another thing that irks me about this book is how the people fall in love. They don't know know each other but they someone know that they love each other. What? This is pretty typical of fairy tales, but I was hoping McKinley would be better.
So, in the end, it looked like a good book... but wasn't at all.(less)