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.
With all of the good things I read about this book, I was eager to get into it when I finally went out and picked it up. Imagine my surprise when I felt myself struggling through the beginning and pretty much finding it to be a drag. BUT…this is a big but…see?!…once the book began to flashback to the past, I was all in. I was also happy and relieved that the book turned itself around.
I was so intrigued by the historical elements of this book, and very interested in how it related to the present regarding Lena’s and Ethan’s current situation. I liked how the different supernatural elements and people came together to create a unique dynamic in the town of Gatlin, but still fail to see the exact purpose of the Casters, be they good or bad. Despite that I still found immense enjoyment in the story.
The connection between Ethan and Lena was great and it didn’t feel over the top or brimming with too much and absurd teen angst. Though I felt some of their conversations to be unrealistic and superficial, for the most part I liked them together and felt they balanced each other well. The offer if support and friendship, no matter what the other was going through, was admirable and sweet.
Secondary characters were well created, well written, and served the story well. I was a big fan of Amma and Macon, and would love to know more about Marion because I think she’s awesome. I also loved Ethan’s best friend Link and was just hoping he’d take a stand against his crazy mother. The supporting cast was very well utilized and I’m looking forward to their roles in future books.
Overall, though I struggled through the beginning, and took issue with a few conversations and situations, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and really ended up loving the story!
PS: The expulsion scene…wasn’t Uncle Macon EVERYTHING in that scene?! LOVE!
Filed in: Reviews, Young Adult Tags: Review, Young Adult