Author: Claudia Gray
Book #: 1st of Trilogy
Publish Date: March 5th 2013
Date Read: August 10th 2013
Rating: ★★★ / out of 5
Nadia sat back. "You know I'm telling you the truth about how dangerous it is."
"Yeah. I do. Want to protect the people you love. I do, too. But we fall apart or we stand together, right?"
Nadia was born with the ability to use magic. Her mother, a trained witch, was teaching her the tricks of the trade. Nadia had hopes of becoming the most powerful witch she could possibly be and everything was looking bright, until her mother up and left the family and Nadia's dad decided it would be best to move them away to start anew.
Now in a new town, Nadia feels a strange and unsettling darkness seeping from the ground and hovering over the entire Captive Sound. With the help of new-found friends, including a boy who holds seemingly impossible magical abilities, Nadia tries to uncover what is holding Captive Sound captive.
I have no doubt that many people have enjoyed it, and I can see why. However, this really seems to me to be a case of individual preference. If you are able to connect to the characters in a way I could not and look past some minor plot holes, you will most likely really end up enjoying this.
I found the story to be interesting and kept me wanting to read to see how it ended, but didn't really attach me enough to want to see how the story continues in the future books. The characters were like-able at face-level, though for me, I couldn't really connect with them on a personal level. The bad-guy (girl, rather) was pretty insane, but didn't really make all of the extremes I thought she should have.
Beware of the spoilers!
The story, like I said, was interesting. However, it felt as though the mysteries were solved way too easily. Need to find out about the history of witchcraft in the town? Well, it's all right there in the newspaper, no need to dig around that much. Need to find an ancient, powerful witch book? Well, it's right there on the bottom of the ocean near the lighthouse (and it's not even covered over, it's seriously just laying there!) Need to beat a witch 400 years more powerful than you are? Don't worry, you just need to get stuck in cobwebs for 24 hours and sit there until you have a gigantic revelation that it took you the entire book to find out.
Maybe I'm exaggerating (and I am. Really, I am). But, to be honest, certain ways in which the story progressed felt off to me. I can't really place my finger on them exactly, but it just felt like there were too many holes in it for me and nothing special about it that made me form an attachment.
The characters- specifically the love-interest- are pretty much all beautiful people. Everyone is beautiful yet somehow over-looked and misunderstood and I just could not find myself connecting to any of them. Not that I have terribly low self esteem. It's just that everyone seems so "barbie-doll" perfect with personalities that I didn't feel were really deep that I would basically consider them all to be plastic and fake.
There were also so many moments that I wanted to slap them all. Nadia, the most, all because of that scene where she went ape-shit on her dad because he wanted to make dinner for them that night. I pretty much lost all respect for her in that moment.
Finally, the antagonist. She is pretty bad-ass and I liked her as the villian. The only flaw I felt she had, was when she decided not to take action against Nadia because she saw her as not being a threat. The way the author portrayed her, and the way I viewed her as being super evil with no inhibitions, I thought she would have decided to eliminate her regardless. Especially because she constantly refers to the fact that she feels a great power within Nadia, even if the girl has no idea how to reach it. I thin she should have been seen as a threat the entire time (even though I guess it all worked out for her and her evil plan in the end).
There is also the villain's side-kick, a devil spirit. It really put me off how, once she releases him, he decides to be all good and helpful to some humans. Like, wtf?! You're supposed to be a demon. Go kill people or something, gosh.
Oh, and just something to think about while you're considering this book. How do you realize you were holding your breathe while you were sleeping?! The world may never know...
Overall, it was a pretty enjoyable read but nothing that I feel a great attachment to. I would still recommend it, though, because most of my opinions are based on my personal preference and not really actual faults, per say.
"There are plenty of limits, and trust me, the world will smack you down and teach you were they are. But make the world do that. Don't do it to yourself."
"Cold?" He smirked. "Nice thin T-shirt shows that off. I like it."
Gross. "Die in a fire." Nadia muttered.
"Last night, I narrowed it down to three possibilities." Verlaine counted them off on her fingers. "One, you have some kind of superpower, but you're trying to hide it because you have a secret identity; maybe there's a Justice League scenario, et cetera. Two, this is more supernatural or occult, like witchcraft, maybe. Three, you're an alien. I know that's a long shot, but then all of these seem like long shot even though they're the only possible explanations. So, can't exclude aliens. If you are from another planet, I want to say, welcome to Earth, and if you have a star ship or a transporter beam or whatever, as long as I can still call my dads once in a while, I'm totally ready to ditch this planet and try it somewhere else."
"Are you, like, wearing a costume? Because I know sometimes guys are like, that's so gay, not gay as in actual gay but as in not cool, except I guess maybe some costumes are actual gay if they're, like, drag and makeup or something, but then on the other hand some guys like to wear, like, horror costumes and look all bad ass so I was wondering if you were going to maybe do something like that?" (page 205)
On My Goodreads: