Monday, January 2, 2012

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl [Review]

4 out of 5 Robots!

Beautiful Creatures Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
Series: Caster Chronicles, #1
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
Release: December 1, 2009
Hardcover: 563 Pages
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
My Copy: Purchased
Reviewer: Shannon
Buy the Book: Amazon

Book Summary:
Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she's struggling to conceal her power, and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.

Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town's oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.

In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.

Shannon's Thoughts:
Beautiful Creatures is the first installment in the amazingly entertaining Caster Chronicles series. Overall, I immensely enjoyed this book... the plot, the characters. It is your standard YA paranormal romance, but that’s not always a bad thing. The story is told from Ethan’s perspective. I adored Ethan’s character – he has a dry wit that is easy to appreciate without being too sarcastic or egotistical. I thought Ethan and Lena’s romance bounced off the pages. Ethan is attracted to Lena, but not ready to run off with her within minutes of introduction. (Yay!!)  The relationship develops slower than most YA romances and I LOVED that. The different types of Caster and their powers is also fascinating- kept me flipping the pages. This book is 600 pages, yet quickly paced and incredibly intriguing- didn't feel like 600 pages!

But there are some problems too. The portrayal of the southern/small town people is oddly cliché. There are also a lot of threads picked up yet never followed through completely. This could be because they will be  explored more in the next installments, but there are some major reveals that just aren't entirely explained. I want to know more!

Beautiful Creatures is a great paranormal YA book. The paranormal aspect is based mostly on witches -  A very welcomed, refreshing break from vampires/werewolves/fairies. I will be reading the other books to come in the Caster Chronicle series and highly suggest you do too!

Other books in this series in the order that they should be read:
1. Beautiful Creatures
2. Beautiful Darkness
2.5 Dream Dark
3. Beautiful Chaos
4. Untitled - Coming 2012

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