Ethan Wate – his mother died and his father has locked himself in his sorrow and despair over her death.
Lena Duchannes – the new girl. And a caster. She lives with her scary Uncle in a house everyone in town avoids.
Locations: Gaitlin, South Carolina
Main Premise: Coming Soon!
Other Important Things to Remember for Later: Coming Soon!
Well, this was interesting. It was fairly unique in that we get this story from his point of view versus hers. I read some reviews (before reading the book) where folks were pretty harsh about the fact that it is told from the guys perspective. So, I was prepared for it. I agree – to an extent. I have never been in side the head of a teenage boy to know if this is really the way they think. If mother’s and father’s everywhere are to be believed, it is not, since we really don’t get the sense that he wants her for sex (which is all teenage boys think about, right?). So, I sort of ignored the fact that our main character/narrator might be a little different from other teenage boys and went with it. By doing that, the perspective didn’t disappoint.
The story was different. It was nice to read something supernatural but so different. Lena and Ethan are well written and I absolutely adore creepy old Uncle Macon when we meet him. the story line was complex enough to keep me reading, yet not so complex so as to leave me thinking “What the…?” The additional peripheral characters were well enough developed that it wasn’t a total shock to see how they came into play later (except Marian – I am still wondering about her and how she ended up involved. I feel like I am missing something here) and most of them felt like they had a purpose – they weren’t just fillers. And let’s not forget Amma. I think there’s more to be learned about her – and I hope I am right. She is a wonderful character – I would love to read the book detailing her story and how she and Uncle Mason came to know each other. The supernatural potential there is huge.
The setting was well done. I could close my eyes and picture the parts of South Carolina or Georgia I have visited. As a former history major in college, I appreciated the tie in to the Civil War and thought it was a hoot to read about a re-enactment (since they gone on here in PA a lot too, and I never really understood them) and how important that was to the town. And it was a great little tie in to have it be so important to the plot too.
I was on the edge of my seat – couldn’t put the book down – because I so badly wanted to understand what the big secret was when it came to Lena’s birthday and how that would be resolved. I did feel a little cheated about the way that was in fact resolved. Without giving too much away, I guess I just need to say that how else could it be set up for the sequel(s)? But, it was still a little disappointing to see Lena get to escape from really having to make the choice. To me, that would have made the sequel(s) much more interesting. But I say that without having read the sequel(s), so we’ll see.
Overall, I was glad I picked this up. It was a relatively quick read for something so hefty. And I will definitely pick up the next one in the “Caster Chronicles”.
p.s. I craved lollipops for about a month after reading this! What an interesting side effect from reading that character (can’t remember her name at the moment… sorry!)