Sunday, July 29, 2012

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Title: Beautiful Creatures
Authors: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
Info: Website | Twitter K | Twitter M | Facebook
Release Date: December 1st, 2009
Publisher: Little, Brown and Co.
Pages: 563
Format: NookBook
Acquired: Bought
Interest: Series
Age Group: Young Adult

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.

Before this summer I had bought this book a thousand my head. I have seen it every time I go to Barnes and Noble or a book fair. I have picked it up each time and walked around with it for half an hour to an hour (I don't know why I do this; it's not like I'm imagining owning the thing or anything, I just make my rounds with it) and before I hit the check out line I always end up putting it back deciding my money is better spent on something else, and by three or four books and tell myself, "Next time." And for the record, I do this with just about every book that I think looks really interesting and I hear everyone talking about. 

Well, the day comes when I feel like I need to have more books on my Nook, because I don't have enough titles sitting on my little machine waiting to be read or anything, and I decide to get and the sequel. (Also, I was a little pressured to want to get caught up in this series before the movie comes out, which I will be watching) and you have no idea how upset I was with myself for not getting to this book sooner. 

Reading from a male's point of view, to me, is always interesting, because in one sense I get to finally see the inside of a guy's head (unterritory for many females) and for another its different and a little refreshing. Ethan would be the type of guy I would have a crush on. I don't know what it is about him, but even though he's considered popular, I found him to be the boy next door type of guy. 

And Lena, well, let's just say that she was everything I expected and nothing at all. A little mystery but a little obvious at the same time, if any of that makes sense. There's her mysterious past and even more mysterious parents, but there was also the obvious issues that she was dealing with being the new kid on the block. Dealing with bullying and being threatened to be expelled from school might keep some kids up at night, but for Lena, on top of that, she's on complete worry mood about her sixteenth birthday. Who she is and what she will become will be answered when that day arrives, but until than she's got to make it to her birthday because an evil Dark Caster going after her doesn't really sound like a birthday present she would want. 

Ethan is a boy who has lived all his life in Gatlin, South Carolina and he is a boy that belongs there. He has dreams of getting out and staying away. Lena is a girl who doesn't belong in more ways than one, and for some reason these two are bound together despite their vast differences. Suddenly, with Lena's appearance, Ethan realizes that there is more to his small town than he originally realized. While he has the everybody-knows-everybody-else's-business attitude, it turns out that this town is filled with more secrets than what could possibly fit in the whole state. 

I felt like there was a lot of clues that were laid out; so much that I had no idea where they were going with it. I originally thought that Ethan would have to deal with the arrival of Lena's sixteenth and maybe encounter her strange, colorful family members, but things are much more complicated. Suddenly there was a tangled web of lies, secrets, and danger that followed the pair. 

While I keep hearing that the biggest complaint about the novel is how it doesn't really capture the Southern feel that it supposedly expresses throughout the story (I'm a Yankee, so I really can't say Yay or Nay) but I found the book refreshing. With the supernatural on the rise and vampires, werewolves, angels, and ghost dominating the bookshelves, witches and the other supernatural creatures in this story are nice. Though, I can't really say 'witches' since that's an offensive term in this world, I meant Casters. 

Finding out how the clues fit together and honestly just wanting to know Lena's fate kept me going. The authors did an excellent job between the relationship between Ethan and Lena, and very realistic. I also found Ethan's attraction to Lena kind of nice; I haven't read a book yet from a male's POV where he obsesses over a girl and wants to promise her his undying love. 

This book unique, epic, and full of problems both supernatural and mortal. The way the two world's intertwined I found stuck out since it was so perfectly well done. 

I'm so glad that I have finally got to read this book and I am already getting the rest of the books because I know that I cannot get enough of the two. It looks like the next Harry Games at Twilight has arrived.  

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