Emily's Book Blog

I judge every book by its cover . . .

Beautiful Creatures

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Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Suggested by: Jerrica Leonard

Rating (out of 5): 2

Genre: Tween Fantasy

While sitting in the theater watching the previews for Breaking Dawn Part 2 with my good friend Jerrica who I had seen ever Twilight Midnight Premier with (pause for breath), the preview for the Beautiful Creatures movie came on. The images were stunning, the visual effects were amazing, and I quickly told Jerrica we would have to see that together. She proceeded to tell me she had read the book and it was good, and I should read it. Fast forward to after I have read the book and I have a strong feeling that the movie (that I haven’t yet seen), will hopefully be way better than the book.

Based on what I saw in the preview, I had originally thought that the book was going to be from the young dark haired girls perspective. Interestingly enough it was not. Instead I was surprised to begin a story about a young high school boy having weird dreams about a girl he does not know. Ethan Wate lives in the deep south and like most teenagers he doesn’t feel like he fits in with the rest of the town.

Lo and behold the girl from his dreams shows up as a new kid in his small high school where everyone knows who everyone else is (sound familiar at all?). Lena is the niece of the town shut in and werido, which results in her being an outcast. But of course Ethan is drawn to her for some unknown reason. Despite Lena’s warnings about how she’s “different” and probably won’t be around much longer, Ethan befriends her and eventually they start to have strange interactions, including a crazy encounter with a necklace in a backyard (pause, if you’ve read this book, someone smack the author’s in the face for calling that thing a “cameo” the entire effing book, it’s a NECKLACK!). Eventually it comes out that Lena and her family are “casters” (witches and other “evil” creatures), and on her 16th birthday she’ll be claimed for either good or evil. Of course they fall in love though and they both try to find a way to stop her from being claimed for evil.

My qualms with the book were the very very very very young writing style. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy reading books aimed at younger audiences, but I can tell …. kiddish writing when I see it. Twilight was at least written at a high school level; I feel like this book was written at a middle school level, meaning I would have been reading it in like 2nd grade. Heck at 5th grade I probably would have found the writing style of this book too young for me. The book had some neat plot twists, but you could always see them coming. While the visuals were very neat in the book, some of them were way too unbelievable. Like when Ethan wakes up from a dream and he’s covered in dirt because he dreamed he was saving Lena from falling in a pit. What teenager wakes up from a dream like that, covered in dirt, and doesn’t get freaked the hell out?! I also found myself not respecting the characters and their decisions. The authors would have the characters make life decisions and act like it was how things just had to be when in all reality that were just crappy life choices. I just couldn’t find even one character in the book that I liked.

I think the story was a neat idea, but the execution was poor. According to my friend who recommended the book to me, she did say that the sequels were really bad and not worth reading at all. If you have a teenager though who likes Twilight stuff, this would definitely be a good read for them.

Favorite excerpts/lines

– Link had a one-track mind, like most guys. The difference was, Link’s track led directly to his mouth.

– Lena Duchannes didn’t speak to me again, not that day, not that week. But that didn’t stop me from thinking about her, or seeing her practically everywhere I tried not to look.

– Only this time she was talking to me, and somehow that made everything different. Not bad-different, just terrifying.

– The flames reached into the sky, pushing forth massive fists of smoke, swallowing everything in their path.

– It felt good to have someone I could talk to, without editing everything I said.

– Tiered crystal chandeliers were dripping from the ceiling.

– Those were the “ifs” that kept me from making a fool of myself.

– It had made sense when a beautiful girl was saying it. ….. a girl who burns me and shocks me and shatters me with a single touch.

– I didn’t say anything to Lena, but with Amma I was lost. And without Macon, I knew Lena couldn’t even find her way to lost.

– His eyes were narrow, his lips rounded to form sounds that hadn’t had a change to escape his lips.

– Darkness, real darkness, was something more than just a lack of light.

– There was something comforting about spending the day with women whose only magical powers were forgetting their own names.

– The music crawled up from her hands and out into the room, moving through the air like another one of her undiscovered powers.

– She kissed me back. The snow fell harder, dripping off us. We were practically radioactive. …. She nodded half-heartedly, and snuggled inside my arms. I could feel the calm beginning to spread between us.

– If you could imagine the color of anger, it had been splashed over every wall. Rage, or something equally dense and seething, was hanging from every chandelier, resentment woven into thick carpets padding the room, hatred flickering underneath every lampshade. The floor was bathed in a creeping shadow, a particular darkness that had seeped up into the walls…. Absolute darkness.

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Written by tinkypears

May 23, 2013 at 7:35 pm

Posted in Book Review

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