TITLE: Beautiful Darkness
SERIES: Caster Chronicles #2
AUTHOR: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
PUBLICATION DATE: October 12, 2010
PUBLISHER: Little, Brown, And Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc
PAGES: 503 pages
RATING: 4 stars
We pick up pretty closely after the ending of Beautiful Creatures. Ethan and Lena struggle to hold on to their relationship despite the constant turmoil of Lena’s life and all the unknown facts Ethan discovers about his and his families past. But the death of Macon was too much to take and soon Lena is pulling away and Ethan is having visions of Macon’s past. Now the countdown to Lena’s seventeenth moon has begun and no one knows what the future holds for her.
Rating this book was just as hard as rating the first. From the moment I started this story, I was instantly irritated at it. The pacing was much slower than the first book with a lot less action in the beginning. For most of the novel, I was reviewing it in my head, watching its star rating drop lower and lower as I thought up scathing things to say to warn people to stay far away. I felt like the authors were hiding in a dark corner, laughing manically because they knew I was suffering. I could hear them whispering in my head, “Ha! We fooled you! We gave you a great first that lacked the things you hate and now, just when we have lulled you into a false sense of security, we are going to throw every cliché you loathe right at you!”
The hero and heroine splitting up, love triangles, angsty angsty angst. Not to mention the amount of southern clichés that are so in your face, I have a hard time ignoring them. I live in the goddamn south, in a relatively small town (so small there is one lonely grocery story and not a single fast food restaurant) and I can assure you that I don’t know half the people there, much less every single one and all the gossip associated with them. I can attest that there are plenty of small-minded individuals here, but not everyone is. I’m almost insulted by the way they describe their world.
The more I read, the anger I became. Lena’s being a fucking moron, Ethan is just letting it happen, Link is so hung up over Ridley, he can’t see straight, and then they introduce a new female character who is naturally attracted to Ethan. Lena ends up running off with another Caster/Incubus hybrid and the tale is a clusterfuck of everything any book with Middle Book Syndrome has. There were parts where I just had to read something else because the urge to stop completely was too much to take.
Then, about 400 pages in (a pretty long way to go to get to the good parts, I know), things started to get better. Ethan stops being an idiot and goes after Lena. Link & Liv (the new annoying point on the triangle) follow him to what appears to be a make believe land and they battle darkness to save Lena. The last 100 or so pages are well worth the annoyances of the preceding ones. Everything comes together in ways I wasn’t expecting ****SPOILER****AND MACON IS ALIVE!!!!
NOT DEAD NOT DEAD NOT DEAD!!!! Sorry, but he was my favorite character and I’m beyond thrilled that I’ll get to see more of him in the next book.****END SPOILER****
I really recommend it for anyone who enjoyed the first novel. Yes, it goes downhill pretty fast, but if you can make it through the bad bits, there is a surprise waiting for you at the end!