Gulnaz K.'s Reviews > Birthright

Birthright by Willow Cross
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Jun 27, 12

bookshelves: do-not-read, paranormal, ya, vampires

After reading Birthright, by Willow Cross, I’m quite shocked that this book has such a high rating. This story opens up with the main character, Liz, who finds herself drawn to a handsome stranger, Michael, at a local fair. As you may have guessed, Michael turns out to be a vampire, feeds on Liz, and turns her into a vampire without actually meaning to. Soon after Liz arrives in the vampire underground, a sort of civil war breaks out between the vampires who are after power. Liz learns that she is actually descendant from a family of witches, and becomes an integral part of the battle between good and evil.

Cross’ story and concepts were in fact interesting—but these concepts should have been developed over the course of multiple books (i.e. a trilogy). I say this because the book was so fast-paced that the reader is constantly presented with these new ideas without really being able to absorb or understand them. For example, Liz’s transition from human to vampire happens within the span of a few hours. This in itself is not bothersome, however Liz’s thought processes are extremely juvenile—they are along the lines of “I like blood, OMG I must be a vampire, I’m so sad I can’t see my family, wait this is sort of cool”. There is no depth of emotion or thought that you would think accompanies such a drastic and abrupt change.

Other concepts that occur throughout are presented like this as well—suddenly time travel is possible, suddenly witches can create portals, suddenly there a prophecy that Liz should be queen of the vampires. The relationships in the book are just as frustrating—after Michael turns Liz, they supposedly form a deep connection that happens when any vampire turns a companion. For the focal relationship of the story, Michael and Liz virtually don’t have any interaction. The book simply states that their feelings for each other are becoming stronger without really telling us why. This book breaks that fundamental rule of “show, don’t tell”—this book was all “tell”.

As I mentioned, these would be interesting concepts, but they are ultimately unsuccessful because the author failed to take adequate time to explain them. I personally do not recommend this book—it was a frustrating read for me.
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