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Review: Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Beautiful Creatures

by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Amazon.com’s Description

There were no surprises in Gatlin County.
We were pretty much the epicenter of the middle of nowhere.
At least, that's what I thought.
Turns out, I couldn't have been more wrong.
There was a curse.
There was a girl.
And in the end, there was a grave.

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.

Beautiful Creatures started out rather slow.  As I read the first fifty pages or so, I seriously considered putting the book down and walking away.  Told in the first-person voice of a male narrator, Ethan did not sound authentically masculine and his banter with his classmates seemed artificial and stilted.   But I persisted, and after a few more chapters the authors seemed to find their rhythm and the narration improved dramatically and the dialogue became much smoother.

The story never fully transported me into its world, but it was entertaining.  A big problem that I had with the book was that it never seemed to explain the Casters thoroughly.  Casters were witches, that much was clear – but how were they different from a ‘regular’ witch?  Lena would explain to Ethan that she was a ‘Natural’ but just what this means was never explored to my satisfaction.   Some of the other Casters’ magical abilities were pretty vague, too.  But if I didn’t wonder too much about the details, it was easy to drift along and let the drama unfold.  The ending was left wide open for a sequel, and given the rapidly growing collection of awards Beautiful Creatures has won (#1 Teen Pick on Amazon.com, Best of 2009 on Amazon, Indie Next Teen Pick, etc) expect to see one soon.

 

To read more about Beautiful Creatures, buy it or add it to your wishlist click here.

Tags: ***1/2, 2009, 21st century, amazon vine, arc, dreams, fantasy, fiction, magic, psychic, r2009, romance, supernatural, the south, witches, young adult
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