Beautiful Creatures – Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Title: Beautiful Creatures
Author: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
ISBN: 9780316042673
Pages: 576
Release Date: December 1, 2009
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Genre: Teen/YA, Fantasy
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 3 out of 5

Summary:

Ethan Wate has everything he should want – he’s a basketball star, he’s in the “popular” crowd at his high school, and he used to date one of the prettiest girls in his small hometown of Gatlin, South Carolina.  However, he isn’t content with his life.  All he can think of is getting out of Gatlin, getting away from the place where he grew up.  When Lena Duchannes moves to town, Ethan sees her as a taste of freedom and befriends her.  But what he doesn’t expect is that Lena is more attractive than he ever could have imagined, but she harbors a dark secret.

Review:

I have been hearing a lot about Beautiful Creatures from reviews and on Twitter.  Each comment is more glowing than the last – this is a book that everyone seems to love.  Everyone except me, that is.  While I thought Beautiful Creatures was interesting, it didn’t capture me the way I’d hoped it would.

The story of Beautiful Creatures is interesting and unique.  I thought Lena was an endearing character, though it was Macon Ravenwood that I was the most interested in.  Garcia and Stohl wrote him well, making him intriguing and mysterious.  Additionally, the mythology behind the entire book was definitely a source of curiosity and was a huge impetus to keep reading.

I’m certain that a lot of my dissatisfaction with this book stemmed from all the hype around it.  With expectations that high, I couldn’t get past some of the problems I had with the book.  Ethan’s voice wasn’t exactly convincing, to begin with.  He seemed much more like what people think the perfect teenage boyfriend should be, rather than a realistic boy.  Additionally, the book was simply too long.  There isn’t enough going on to sustain an almost-600 page book.  It takes about 200 pages before the novel even really begins.  And once the story finally picks up, there’s a lot of waiting around for something to happen while Ethan and Lena contemplate their relationship.

I’m not sure how I would have felt about this book without all the hype.  Part of me feels like I’m over the whole paranormal YA craze – I haven’t really been impressed with any of the fantasy type YA books I’ve been reading lately.  Still, I think if your expectations of Beautiful Creatures aren’t too high, you should give it a try – it might surprise you!

Comments

  1. We share some of the same feeling about this book and also paranormal YA. I really really wanted to love the heck out of this book but for me it was more just ok too. And I’m taking a break from Paranormal right now, too much!

  2. We share some of the same feeling about this book and also paranormal YA. I really really wanted to love the heck out of this book but for me it was more just ok too. And I’m taking a break from Paranormal right now, too much!

  3. Twilight was enough to throw me off of paranormal YA forever. And you are right, the hype on this one has been pretty overwhelming, and that can be dangerous. No way to avoid that I guess.

  4. Twilight was enough to throw me off of paranormal YA forever. And you are right, the hype on this one has been pretty overwhelming, and that can be dangerous. No way to avoid that I guess.

  5. I think I’m going to hold off reading this one because of all the hype surrounding it. Thanks for a nicely balanced review.

  6. I think I’m going to hold off reading this one because of all the hype surrounding it. Thanks for a nicely balanced review.

  7. I’ve been curious about this one and will likely read it, but I won’t go into it with high expectations.

  8. I’ve been curious about this one and will likely read it, but I won’t go into it with high expectations.

  9. Man, how wierd is this! I posted my review on this book today as well, and it sounds like the hype around this book did it in for both of us. I also felt the book’s length really crippled the reading experience for me.

  10. Man, how wierd is this! I posted my review on this book today as well, and it sounds like the hype around this book did it in for both of us. I also felt the book’s length really crippled the reading experience for me.

  11. I completely agree with you. I was disappointed by B.C. and I expected so much more b/c of all the hype. I’m glad to see that there are others who agree with me!

  12. I completely agree with you. I was disappointed by B.C. and I expected so much more b/c of all the hype. I’m glad to see that there are others who agree with me!

  13. I’m curious but not curious enough to pick this one up… Thanks for the thoughts!

  14. I’m curious but not curious enough to pick this one up… Thanks for the thoughts!

  15. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy it. I really loved it (as you know from my Twitter gushing) but I also don’t read loads of paranormal/fantasy YA so perhaps my expectations going in were a lot different.

    Hopefully we’ll get to chat about it in person next weekend!

  16. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy it. I really loved it (as you know from my Twitter gushing) but I also don’t read loads of paranormal/fantasy YA so perhaps my expectations going in were a lot different.

    Hopefully we’ll get to chat about it in person next weekend!

  17. I think some YA fantasy can be great, but hype doesn’t always mean everything…you just have to be interested in reading. I probably won’t read this for awhile b/c it’s so long and I’m always tight for reading time but also b/c it never fully caught my interest like a lot of others. 🙂

    -Lauren

    Want to enter my Book Lover’s Basket Giveaway?? It would help my family a ton in the long run too!!

    http://shootingstarsmag.blogspot.com/2010/02/book-lovers-prize-basket-international.html

  18. I think some YA fantasy can be great, but hype doesn’t always mean everything…you just have to be interested in reading. I probably won’t read this for awhile b/c it’s so long and I’m always tight for reading time but also b/c it never fully caught my interest like a lot of others. 🙂

    -Lauren

    Want to enter my Book Lover’s Basket Giveaway?? It would help my family a ton in the long run too!!

    http://shootingstarsmag.blogspot.com/2010/02/book-lovers-prize-basket-international.html

  19. Yours is the first non-OMG!!1! review I’ve read of Beautiful Creatures, and I think that’s good! 🙂 I’m interested in this one, but I’m sure I would share your dislikes. Hmm.

  20. Yours is the first non-OMG!!1! review I’ve read of Beautiful Creatures, and I think that’s good! 🙂 I’m interested in this one, but I’m sure I would share your dislikes. Hmm.

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