Author: Carrie Jones
Series: Need #1
Review: Zara thinks she’s being stalked. She moves to Maine. She still thinks she’s being stalked. She is. The guy still comes after her, leaving gold dust in his wake. With new friends Nick, Issie, and Deryn, Zara learns about her history, the disappearing boys, and some other creatures, and why she is needed.
I read this because it’s one of those books I’ve seen around for ages and felt I needed to read one day. Then a friend of mine got on to me about it and so I bumped it up my list.
You get to know Zara quite quickly. I quite liked that she recited the names of phobias-it makes her a little different. Tthe new friends were realistic, fun, supportive and good characters. Love interest Nick is nice, and our big reveal regarding him is unexpected. Betty, Zara’s grandmother, is cool from the start, and even more so by the end.
The fantasy world building is good. The lore surrounding the creatures is developed nicely, and feeds in well to the mystery.
The writing isn’t that distinctive or especially interesting. The plot, I really didn’t like the way it turns out in the end.
Overall: Strength 3 tea to a quick romance fantasy with an unsatisfactory conclusion.
Title: Death & Co
Series: Death &Co #1
Published: May 2 2013
Review: Adam Morton’s life is mapped out for him. As a son of a prominent family in the business, he is to become a Luman, guiding dead souls into the afterlife. But he doesn’t want that. He’s already going against Luman norm by staying on at school for GCSEs and trying to date Melissa. Then Adam learns of an ability he has that gives him the chance to save peoples’ lives. This is what happens when he uses it.
The thing that drew me in was the title. The summary looks interesting too. The breaking free of family theme isn’t particularly original/captivating, but the setting certainly is.
I liked Adam. He’s a very real teenager, with the independence and freedom-wanting side of him really showing, and I liked that. My favourite character was Auntie Jo-she’s crazy in an awesome way. Close second is sister Chloe, and her insistence against the really heavy patriarchal society of the Lumen. I also liked the group of Lumen who come round to Adam’s house for a formal dinner and move the plot along. Melissa is very sweet.
I liked the fact that things happen because Adam chooses to make them happen and not just because yeah happenings. It’s good, because it shows responsibility and allows us to explore Adam’s character a bit more through his choices as well as his actions. I liked the romance as well, because Adam deserves some of the normality he really really wants. One big drawback for me was the sending fake emails to the head. I didn’t find it funny, and generally didn't enjoy what took up quite a bit of the book.
The world of the Lumen is really fleshed out. I’d like to go back to it in other books.
Overall: Strength 3.5, just about more a 3, to a book with a mixture of reality and fantasy and choices.