Julia's Reviews > Dark Companion

Dark Companion by Marta Acosta
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's review
Oct 10, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: arcs, fiction, fantasy, urban, young-adult, dropbox
Read from October 10 to 13, 2011

A intricate book that mixes a variety of tones and plot lines. The first half sucked me in,giving me confidence in Jane's steady and methodical nature,then making me worry that her past would blind her to joys and dangers right in front of her. The question set up is what view of the world is right,Jane's equations or her friends magic and poetry... and Marta Acosta's answer to that question is the most complicated thing of all.

I loved the first half of this book, Jane Williams was as captivating and vulnerable as her literary ancestress,Jane Eyre. I loved that magic was not assured (and indeed, does not show up where and how you expect). I loved that I had no idea how things were going to unfold, either romantically with Jack and Lucky, or plot-wise with the missing women and odd dynamics of Birch Grove. Once these questions began to be answered, the story became less tightly structured. It felt like two books in one, with scenes and details that were wonderful but didn't fit the flow of the narrative. The mystery came apart in a very Gothic fashion, the romance resolved almost too neatly, and while I appreciated the future laid out before Jane I couldn't get a handle on whether the story was building to a close or to a sequel.

DARK COMPANION careens with it the seeds of several good stories, and details that I will enjoy mulling over in the future, but the book itself doesn't manage to present all if these seeds in particularly polished manner. The writing and the characterization is wonderful, but the narrative flow wanders and breaks apart in the end. Of course, this just leaves room for me to imagine my own ending for the story, and Jane is definitely a character that I'll enjoy returning to, if only in daydreams.

Full review to follow.

Sexual Content: Kissing, petting, discussions about sex.
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Reading Progress

10/10/2011 page 119
32.34% "Forcing myself to stop and sleep, I love Jane's voice. Everything is vaguely threatening and Gothic; I have no idea where the supernatural will spring up."

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