Vinaya's Reviews > Indelible

Indelible by Lani Woodland
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's review
Dec 11, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: books-i-liked, comparative-5-stars, hmm-that-was-interesting, speshul-snowflake, ya-fantasy
Recommended to Vinaya by: Lani Woodland
Recommended for: Cassandra Clare and her ilk
Read from November 30 to December 10, 2011

First off, in the interests of full disclosure...



Well, a fictionalized representation of me, anyway!

Secondly, I was one of the beta readers for Indelible, so my review may be biased because of a) Lani's overall awesomeness and b) my efforts on behalf of this book.


A signed copy - I feel so speshul!

This is not so much a review as it is a mini-story. I can't in all honesty review this book with any amount of objectivity.

Indelible was awesome. Not perfect, but still awesome. It is a tightly-plotted fast-paced read that simultaneously satisfies and stimulates. But what really made me respect the book, and the author, is the sheer amount of work I saw Lani put into this book. Stating the obvious here, but the first draft of the book was nothing like the end product. And boy, was I harsh on Lani! I'm not exactly known for my tact, so a lot of my feedback was along the lines of 'this makes no sense' or 'you need to KILL THE SIMILES' or 'This is the stupidest reaction I've ever seen a character have'. And through it all, Lani was graceful and polite (even when she probably wanted to run screaming from the computer!) and she revised and revised and revised. At last count, I have about seven or eight drafts of Indelible on my laptop, and nothing makes Lani's growth as an author and a storyteller more obvious than a comparison of all those prior versions.

This book ought to be required reading for anybody trying to develop a romance beyond the first book. At the end of Intrinsical, we left Yara and Brent in a good place, so I was a little apprehensive about their relationship in Indelible. Was this going to be a CoFA repeat? Was this romance now going to turn angsty, or was the introduction of a new character (view spoiler) going to portend the appearance of the dreaded love triangle? I should have had more faith in Lani, especially considering that the romance in Intrinsical was one of the biggest selling points for me.

Yara and Brent take the path less trodden in YA PNRs. Instead of descending into relationship angst, their relationship grows, and strengthens. They make good choices, relationship-wise, even when those choices are difficult and possibly hurtful. Yara doesn't lose her mind simply because Brent is pretty to look at and smells great - instead she thinks things through calmly and acts like the mature, smart girl I would want my kids to grow up to be.

Yara was incredible in this second installment. (Hey Lani, can we call the third book Incredible? It might be prophetic!) She was a pretty strong character in the first book, but she really steals the show in this one. Again, this is what makes this book so special. Instead of getting stuck in a rut, Yara really manages to grow in this book. Initially hesitant about her calling as a Waker, and ready to take the easy way out, she eventually manages to make peace with who and what she is. More than that, she learns from her experiences and becomes a wiser, more mature young adult in the truest sense of the word.

Cherie and Steve are, of course, adorable as usual, although I didn't see nearly as much of Steve in this book as I would have liked to, especially considering that I have a little literary-crush on him.

“Hey!” Brent scowled at Cherie. “I bought you a mani-pedi for sole access today.”
“Dude.” Steve dropped his chin to his chest and reached his hand back between the seats. “Hand it over.”
Brent slapped his outstretched hand.
“No.” Steve wiped his hand on his slacks while shaking his head. “You don’t get to give me five. Hand over your Man Card. I can’t believe you used the phrase 'mani-pedi.'”


Cherie and Steve's relationship, while taking a backseat to Brent and Yara's, still manages to be adorable and healthy and funny, just like them.

Lani Woodland's strength lies in her ability to write some great action scenes. The book starts off almost immediately on an action-filled note, with a violently pissed off ghost, and throughout the book, Yara must deal with the very real threats posed to her physical safety as well as her emotional turmoil. The way the book manages to combine character growth with hard-hitting action makes it quite the ride.

I also have a soft spot for Yara's family, from her poor anxious mother, to her enigmatic, occasionally frustrating, but always-loving Vovo, to her sword-wielding overprotective father.

As I said before, this book is not perfect. Lani does like her similes a little too much. And there is definitely not enough Steve in the book. And I somehow felt that Yara's switch in the end was a little too abrupt. (view spoiler)

But minor gripes aside, Indelible stands out because it does something most YA PNRs today don't do. The characterizations are great, the plotting is amazing and the action scenes are gripping. The book manages to end on a satisfactory note, while still leaving you begging for more.

And on a side note, I didn't really notice how pretty the cover was until I was holding it in my hands. The model is a nice, warm brown color, the dress is SO PRETTY and I LOVE the flames licking the bottom corner of the jacket while the water pools around her feet. I thought it was a generic cover at first, but if you look closely, it kind of isn't.

All in all, I am very proud to have been a small part of helping this book come into being. I cannot wait to see what Lani has in store for us in the next book, and I'm hoping the book is going to be set in Brazil, because I am about ready to shuck the confines for Pendrell for some sun, sand and surf!

A copy of the book was provided to me by Lani Woodland. Thanks Lani!
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Reading Progress

11/30/2011 "This came in the mail today, and the first thing I did was flip the pages to see where I came in. I grinned SO HARD when I found my scene; and then I flashed it around the office to make everyone jealous! YAY ME!" 2 comments

Comments <span class="smallText"> (showing 1-7 of 7) </span> <span class="smallText">(7 new)</span>

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message 1: by Katya (new)

Katya When I have a finished draft of a book, I'm going to ask you to beta read it. That's all.

*goes to find the first book in the series*

message 2: by AH (new) - added it

AH Wow. An awesome review and great beta work. Sometimes we don't have any clue about how much work and how many revisions a book must go through before we see the final product. I'll have to find this series, it sounds great.

message 3: by Jasprit (new)

Jasprit Thats awesome about you being in the book Vinaya! :) Your review makes this book sound like an awesome series I'm missing out on. Can't wait to read it!

Vinaya Katya: Is it the NaNo story? Please say yes! I really, really want to read that one!

AH, Jasprit: I'd love to see more people giving this series a shot; to be honest, I liked the first book, but I wasn't overly impressed by it, but the second one makes up for it in spades! I can't wait to see what you guys think of it!

message 5: by Katya (new)

Katya This year's nano, although I have high hopes for last years too.

message 6: by Rachel (new)

Rachel Hartman I keep misreading the title as "Inedible".

message 7: by AH (new) - added it

AH Rachel wrote: "I keep misreading the title as "Inedible"."

I did, too!

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