Monday, April 1, 2013

Review: The Sweetest Dark, by Shana Abe

The Sweetest Dark

“With every fiber of my being, I yearned to be normal. To glide through my days at Iverson without incident. But I’d have to face the fact that my life was about to unfold in a very, very different way than I’d ever envisioned. Normal would become forever out of reach.”

Lora Jones has always known that she’s different. On the outside, she appears to be an ordinary sixteen-year-old girl. Yet Lora’s been keeping a heartful of secrets: She hears songs that no one else can hear, dreams vividly of smoke and flight, and lives with a mysterious voice inside her that insists she’s far more than what she seems.

England, 1915. Raised in an orphanage in a rough corner of London, Lora quickly learns to hide her unique abilities and avoid attention. Then, much to her surprise, she is selected as the new charity student at Iverson, an elite boarding school on England’s southern coast. Iverson’s eerie, gothic castle is like nothing Lora has ever seen. And the two boys she meets there will open her eyes and forever change her destiny.

Jesse is the school’s groundskeeper—a beautiful boy who recognizes Lora for who and what she truly is. Armand is a darkly handsome and arrogant aristocrat who harbors a few closely guarded secrets of his own. Both hold the answers to her past. One is the key to her future. And both will aim to win her heart. As danger descends upon Iverson, Lora must harness the powers she’s only just begun to understand, or else lose everything she dearly loves.

Filled with lush atmosphere, thrilling romance, and ancient magic, The Sweetest Dark brilliantly captures a rich historical era while unfolding an enchanting love story that defies time. -Goodreads

My Rating: 3/5 stars
I recieved an ARC through NetGalley, which does not influence my review in any way.

What I liked:
- Originality of the plot
- The writing
- Eleanor (at times)

What I disliked:
- Insta-love
- How the story flowed
- Eleanor

A dark, emotional paranormal set in London during WWI.

The Sweetest Dark did have its good and bad moments. I applaud the author's originality, venturing into a topic that I don't think is very common in the young adult genre.

The writing was, to me, the best quality of this book. It flowed very nicely, was structured well, and, overall, lovely.

Eleanor is a confusing character. At the beginning, she was a very strong heroine, and I admired her attitude. On the other hand, there were times when she was so irritating.

One of the main reasons as to why I found her irritating is the fact that she fell head-over-heels for Jess automatically. Literally. Once she found out that they weredestined to be together, she claimed that she was "in love". Hmm. This screams INSTALOVE, which I am a firm opponent of. The problem was, she never questioned their love, she was positive that they were meant for each other. I'm sorry, but I truly believe that this kind of love is unrealistic, fake. and just plain stupid. For someone who seems like a smart girl, she sure is naive when it comes to love.

Not that I didn't like Jess. I was okay with him, as he was tolerable.

How the story flowed and was put together is a huge downfall of this book. Yes, there were several parts to the plot, but what was missing was the actual thread that held the plot together. I don't know how some things were related, as the author did not put much effort into explaining it. For example, what does turning into smoke have to do with dragons? I, for one, know little to nothing on this topic, so I was somewhat confused as to why a dragon would turn into smoke.

The overall novel was confusing in its entirety. As I have stated, the explanations were not present, as if the author expected us readers to be educated on this topic.

By some, Eleanor can be considered a Mary Sue, to a certain extent. She was perfect at many things, even if she lived in an orphanage for most of her life and had no exposure to that particular thing whatsoever. I don't see a relation between being perfect at everything, such as playing piano, and being a dragon.

This book was enjoyable, but there were many glaring mistakes that could be improved upon.

No comments:

Post a Comment