Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Beautiful Creatures [Review]

#1 in Caster Chronicles
577 Pages [Kindle]
Published 1 December 2009
Find on Goodreads

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.

My Thoughts:
Ethan Wate is a 16 year old bookworm/basketball player living in Civil War-obsessed Gatlin, South Carolina. He lives with his father and housekeeper, Amma.  His father is still devastated over the loss of Ethan's mom and only comes out of the library/study, where he is writing a book, to eat meals and shower. Ethan, himself, has a recurring nightmare. The first day of school, there is a new girl. Gatlin never gets new kids, so the new girl is a huge point of interest; not only because she is new, but because she is the town's Boo Radley's niece. Ethan realizes she's the girl who has been haunting him in his dreams.

Lena's family is made up of Casters, which are similar to traditional witches. Each one has a different power and they are either light or dark Casters (good or evil). On each Casters' 16th birthday, they are claimed for good or for evil. Lena has yet to turn 16 and she is terrified she will be dark.

I have heard a lot of people say that they had a hard time getting into the story. I, on the other hand, had no issues whatsoever. I loved the flow of the book and the storyline. I enjoyed the small town drama plus the paranormal hijinks - and everything in between.

The story is told from Ethan's POV, which is refreshing. Every once in a while you need a good male POV in the YA genre. I honestly don't think I would have minded Lena's either though because she isn't a weak, whiny cliche. She's awesome and smart and...awesome! :)

The secondary characters are pretty amazing too. I couldn't help but love Ridley, Lena's cousin, who has the power of persuasion. She's a badass siren and I am excited to see more of her in the coming books. She's one of those "villains" you wanna root for. Lena's Uncle Macon was pretty cool too. I love how eloquent and theatrical he is - and that he named his dog Boo Radley. Amma, who I mentioned briefly up there, is the Wates' housekeeper and, while her character is a little stereotypical, I still loved her. Probably one of the best secondary characters is Marian, the librarian and Ethan's late mom's best friend. She spoke in quotes and in a way was a piece of Ethan's mom in the story.

I am very excited for the movie. I'm a little bummed at the combination of Amma and Marian, but I feel like they did really well with casting and it's going to be great.

Previous Review:
Crimson Frost by Jennifer Estep [here]

Linked up at...


Abbey said...

So glad to hear you liked it! I've heard a lot about this one. Need to check it out!

The Pink Growl said...

I'm going to see the movie next week even though I think the previews look awful! Those fake southern accents, ugh! I'm reading Book 2 now.

tara said...

i'm enjoying this series! interested to see if it really is going to be the next big thing that everyone seems to think it will be!

My-cliffnotes said...

I liked it too! I'm about 100 pages into book two.

Nichole said...

Ive seen so many previews for the movie and it seemed so bad, but the more I see previews the more I want to see the movie. I didn't know there was a book! I may have to read it, glad you enjoyed it.

Danielle Chance said...

I'm in the same boat as Nichole in the comment above. I had no idea that the movie was based upon a book. I have approximately 9 billion books in my to read pile but I might have to add this one to the list.

Thanks for sharing! I'm stopping over from the book club linkup.

Happy Friday!

jennie said...

I had no idea this was from a male POV! I've wanted to read the series anyway but that just bumped it up in my list!

Bubblymuppet said...

I definitely want to read this before seeing the movie! Sounds great!

A Country Girls World said...

I keep hearing good things about this book, I think it just landed a spot on my "to-read" list

jen @ i like big books said...

it was easy for me to get into the book, but i was so disappointed by the ending. link was my favorite character.

Shoshanah said...

I haven't read the books, but I did really enjoy the movie. I've been wanting to read the books for a while now, but after the movie want to even more. I'm just hoping more people decide to see the movie, that way they eventually decide on making the sequel.