C.G. Drews's Reviews > Half Bad

Half Bad by Sally Green
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it was amazing
bookshelves: 5-star, best-of-2014, read-2014, young-adult, paranormal, ya-male-narrators, read-2017, reread
Read 2 times. Last read October 12, 2017 to October 13, 2017.

REREAD 2017:
Well I'm pleased to say I'M STILL 50000% TRASH FOR THIS BOOK. I actually love it so much it physically pains my heart. So there you have it. (A) I do have feelings [just a few] and (B) it's so so good. I'm hit again by how much of a stream-of-consciousness feel it has. Like, we're not reading about Nathan. WE ARE NATHAN. And I'm..I'm...ya that puddle on the floor is me it's ok I didn't like happiness anyway.

Also it's been 3 years since I read this and I just?!???? I JUST ADORE IT MORE. Nathan is so bitter and snarky and damaged and the torture/cruelty scenes in this book are SO DARK and I appreciate dark books so this is thoroughly for me. Me @ all books = be darker. So this is yes.


(NOTE: The audiobook is fantastic.)

Look, I'm going to be blunt here (I can't help it): Half Bad had all the potential of pure freakish genius in it's 380-pages. And what did it do?

IT BLEW MY MIND. Yes, that's right, peoples, I bloody love this book! I love it! I love it! I - yeah, okay, you get the picture. It's a beautiful picture. I basically just want to fangirl, buuuut, you want to know why I liked it, don't you? High maintenance you lot are.

First I'm going to squeak talk rationally about the writing: I love this style of writing. It's different. It's genius. It starts off in second person, with "you" and all that. But that's only for part 1 (so if it's not your pot of jam, don't fret). The rest is in 1st person, sometimes in past and sometimes in present. The style is different. Genius. The writing is blunt and so incredibly personal. I'm a sucker for writing that gets inside you, instead of, you know, throws words at you from a distance. I breathed this book. Also, because it was glued to my face for several hours while I read it in 2 sittings.

The entire story is extremely messy too. I like the whole "good vs bad" thing happening -- because is it ever that clean cut? HOW ABOUT NO. The White Witches are horrific and cruel...juuust like the Black Witches. So basically: blood everywhere and unspeakable cruelty to a kid. It could be titled: How To Raise A Child To Hate You: the Witch Edition. Seriously, I was freaking out at all the stuff they inflicted on Nathan. SOMEONE RESCUE THAT CHILD. Get me a pitchfork because I'm going after the White Witch Council.


So let's talk about Nathan, shall we? Oh, wait, hold that thought, I just need to go collect my shattered feels and sticky-tape them back together. Saying "child abuse" doesn't even cover it. The things they put Nathan through...why? Because he's half White and half Black. I felt like the book was looking at the concept of: if you don't understand it, kill it with fire. It's archaic, but, come on! That's still how we still treat things we don't understand.

I loved Nathan's voice, and I also loved his personality. He starts the book as an 8-year-old and then it ends when he's 17-years-old. Oh, gosh, I'm having a hard time summing him up. He was unbelievable unbreakable. He was angry and kind of psychotic at time. Calm down, dude, but then...if you were locked in a cage for a good portion of your life, would you be calm ever? No.

I'm not calm. I'm freaking out. Did I mention that already?

I felt like it was a little slow in some places. That saying, though, I felt it balanced the freaking-out-scenes of torture and abuse. I couldn't turn pages fast enough.

Excuse me, but I'm off to put this on my favourites shelf. And while I'm doing that, you can go read it, you muggles. Or fains, or whatever.
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Reading Progress

March 1, 2014 – Shelved
March 1, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
March 29, 2014 – Started Reading
March 29, 2014 –
page 100
March 30, 2014 – Shelved as: 5-star
March 30, 2014 – Shelved as: best-of-2014
March 30, 2014 – Shelved as: read-2014
March 30, 2014 – Shelved as: young-adult
March 30, 2014 – Shelved as: paranormal
March 30, 2014 – Finished Reading
November 17, 2016 – Shelved as: ya-male-narrators
October 12, 2017 – Started Reading
October 12, 2017 –
page 190

(Also I love this book so freaking much I think I just swallowed my heart.)"
October 13, 2017 –
page 250
65.79% "sitting here just waiting for the light of Nathan and my life, our angel dark witch Gabriel, to show up."
October 13, 2017 – Shelved as: read-2017
October 13, 2017 – Finished Reading
February 26, 2018 – Shelved as: reread

Comments Showing 1-6 of 6 (6 new)

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Leah HOW ABOUT THAT SUDDEN REVEAL ABOUT GABRIEL AND HIS FEELINGS HUH? ... I really didn't see that one coming.

message 2: by Elm (new) - rated it 5 stars

Love your review. It's so detailed! :)

Maggie, a Novel Loved your review so much that I went and bought the trilogy on bookoutlet :) can't wait to start reading it, it sounds awesome !

message 4: by idiffer (new) - added it

idiffer reading the second book. I am so pissed. where did the gay romance come from? what, nathan only NOW realizes that he's bisexual?

C.G. Drews @idiffer: Ummmmmmm. He was bisexual the whole time? (Or maybe pan.) The last word in this book is literally: Gabriel. He's not going after Annalise. He chose Gabriel.

Chelsea Walker “We’re not reading about Nathan. WE ARE NATHAN” — YES!!! That perfectly explains how I felt. Thank you.

And I also agree that the audiobook was SO BLOODY GOOD.

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