Jo's Reviews > Croak

Croak by Gina Damico
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's review
Sep 15, 12

bookshelves: young-adult, urban-fantasy
Read in July, 2012

The minute I read the blurb on this book, I was hooked. A teenage girl goes off the rails and is sent to live with her Uncle Mort, only to find out she's secretly a Reaper? Yes, please! Sign me up!

So I went into the book with, let us say, insanely high expectations. And I'm pleased to say that it delivered on almost all of them.

Lex is a tough, troubled teenager. She doesn't quite have a heart of gold, but it's probably silver. Or bronze. But it doesn't really matter. She's a strong female lead amongst a cast full of strong characters. If I had daughters, they could do worse than to grow up with Lex's willfulness and determination. (Although they'd be welcome to skip the whole "reaper of the dead" angle.)

The supporting characters are great as well. I loved Uncle Mort within about three seconds of meeting him. The other reapers are fun and engaging and surprisingly... normal. (For a given definition of normal.) I can't wait to read more about them in future books.

The world building was well done and authentic, the writing was easy to read and expressive, and the reading experience was great.

The only downside was that I saw the "twist" coming about a third of the way into the book, and knew who the bad guy was within about three seconds of meeting them. I don't know whether that's a reflection on the writing here, or on my own extensive reading in the YA and Urban Fantasy genres, but I did find it a bit of a let-down. I really would have liked to be more surprised by the reveal. The reveal itself was exciting and clever, though, so my overall opinion of the book wasn't tarnished.

This is a great book, and I'm eagerly anticipating the sequel.
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