Sunday, August 12, 2012

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Title: Nightshade
Author: Andrea Cremer
Info: Website | Twitter | Facebook
Release Date: June 14th, 2011
Publisher: Speak
Pages: 454
Format: Paperback
Acquired: Bought
Interest: Series
Age Group: Young Adult

Calla is the alpha female of a shape-shifting wolf pack. She is destined to marry Ren Laroche, the pack's alpha male. Together, they would rule their pack together, guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But then, Calla saves a beautiful human boy, who captures her heart. Calla begins to question everything - her fate, her existence, and her world and the orders the Keepers have asked her to follow. She will have to make a choice. But will she follow her heart if it means losing everything, including her own life?

I technically speaking started this book last year, but then I had to put it down because of college life, and then I had to wait another year before I could read it. Until then, I basically bought the entire series and had it collect dust with my other TBR's. 

Well, I have finally read it, and I am confused. Yeah, I liked the way things started and the way things ended. But I was a little confused in the middle. It wasn't the way that Cremer wrote but the character of Calla herself that confused me. 

In the beginning she was a very smart, very in control alpha female, and I could honestly respect her. But when Ren was around and when Shay got into the picture she became a completely different person. With Ren she was submissive and always feeling guilty, and with Shay it was more or less the latter. 

For a long time I couldn't tell if Calla was going to go one way or if she was going to go another. I was frustrated a lot of the times with the way she handled situations or didn't handle situations in any case. She just let things happened to her and most times didn't act the way I had pictured her she would act compared to who she was in the beginning. 

But, I did like the mythology. At first I was confused on what was going on and who was who. I kept questioning "What's a Guardian? What's a Keeper? Wait - their the same? No, their different?" Since there was a lot of passages that kept contracting each other, but finally when Calla sat down and explained it made sense. 

And I enjoyed mostly that it wasn't big information dumb. What Cremer gave reader's was what Calla knew, which proved to be very little. I did like the way that information was coming down slowly and really making it's way to the readers. 

I also liked the change and development between the pack members. Calla could honestly tell when she was losing control of her pack and when she was losing herself in the union between Ren. And I liked how she could tell that Ren was losing himself in this.

And the double standard! Ren is a male alpha so it's okay that he's off with as many women as he wants, but Calla must be a lady, never letting a man touch her, ever. That irritated me so much and I just kept waiting for it to bother Calla too, I mean, even I see how stupid that is. 

Finally, the ending. Calla was finally back to the same Calla reader's saw in the beginning. I was a little angry because it seemed to take the character's forever to figure out something that was very obvious to begin with, well, in my opinion. But, things took a turn against what I was expecting that's for sure. 

This book definitely took the series into a good start and I'm liking it a lot. This book was beautifully written, with amazing character developments. I like how Calla was doing her best to keep hold of the world she knew but at the same time growing and seeing the flaws in them. 

It was a whirlwind of excitement and I can't wait to read the next book and see what happens with Calla and Shay. 

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