Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart she might lose everything--including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

My Take:
Warning: There might be spoilers.
First let me say that if I was the president of all publishing houses, who would I pick to constantly churn out stuff every month, (apart from the love of life, the late Mr. Awesome Chekov) it will be Andrea Cremer.
 Dont get it wrong here, she has raw writing talent. Words are not thrown around, neither do they try to stuff you with so much poetic stuff, you keep rolling your eyes, (Shiver, Matched), so not my thing. Andrea's words are sweet, and all have punch and meaning. It's like word porn, you just can't get enough. Alright, I will get to the story. I hate rehearsing what the book is about since the blurb can tell you so I will just jump right in with the good and the bad.
The Good:
Her writing. (hehe, I already mentioned that.)
Andrea does a good job of creating a complex heirachy in her world. I like that the wolves are controlled by the Keepers. They drink blood to heal, so vampirish and awesome. Calla is no Luce, but I dont know if she is really as strong as I would have liked her to be. I think Andrea did this on purpose to show that despite all the responsibilities on Calla she is still a young girl. Ren just didnt do it for me. The biting Calla's neck to keep her in place was gross and botherline no-no for me. And the constant groping and so on he forced on Calla ... Not sexy in anyway but I think I am in the minority as all you have to do is check twitter for all the #teamRen. Shay was sweet and delicious.  #TEAMSHAY forever. Yes, Shay was that hot. Curious about knowledge, beautiful, but yet still like a real boy who every young girl wants as her ideal boyfriend. The lovliness when both he and Calla are in wolf form is beyond amazing. I would say it again, AMAZING. Not sure why but I sort of liked Logan too, she wrote him so well, I could picture him so clearly.
I am so happy she included gay characters who were not loud, obnoxious or cross dressing and have a female as their best friend. They are gay, but awesome gay characters. This might make me sound perverted but I loved Logan too much to feel bad about what he was doing.
Overall, the story is complex, the world building is strong, the mythology is fascinating, and the characters are interesting. This doesn't mean the book is without flaws. Calla's inability to control her hormones is grating and sometimes add a lust like feel because you forget you are reading a young adult novel. But its a conflicting emotion,  Andrea writes so well, you feel hot reading the scenes, but just when you start fearing that Calla might be acting based on sexual tension instead of Love, Andrea spuns your head around. But the truth is sex is very much a part of love and at that age your hormones are raging. 2010 is almost over, but there is no doubt Nightshade is one of the best books of the year. Most importantly, Andrea wasn't scared to go there, she touched on topics people have been crying to see in YA, without making them seem like an outcast or something bad. My rating- 4.5/5 A must read!

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