Published: 10-12-2010 by Little, Brown
Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.
Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan's eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there's no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town's tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems.
I really liked the first book in this series, Beautiful Creatures. Overall, I thought this book was too long and not nearly as exciting as I had hoped. I mean, the summary does say life-ending, so I don't think I was wrong to expect excitement.
- Liv - Once I got over there being a girl who could be the harbinger of yet another YA love triangle (please, please don't be), I realized I like Liv. She's smart, quirky, and gutsy. And also about 99% less whiny than Lena. She made me realize how much I don't really care for Lena.
- enthralling - There is something about these books that is charming and funny. There was more of it in the 1st book, but it still exists in this one. I think this charm may come, in part, from the setting, but I don't think it can be pinned down.
- Lena - Uuugh, Lena. I know you are grieving and you were a bit strange before that, but what are you doing? Every time Lena acted rationally, she came up with some new crazy reason to go off and do something stupid. Then she would get mad at Ethan for whatever he was doing while she was destroying things, but never appreciating him when he was trying to help her.
- length - This book is so long. The 1st one was really long as well. While I like that this isn't a series cranking out a 200 page book every year where nothing happens, I also dislike giant lengthy books crammed with non-action. Beautiful Darkness has a lot of back and forth as far as plot goes - lots of thinking and flashbacking, not a lot of anything actually happening until the end. And that bugs me.
- claiming - SPOILERS! Hey, look at that - another book that ends with a claiming in which Lena yet again does not decide if she's going to be a light or dark Caster. Two things about this: 1. Is it really that hard to pick a side? Light or Dark - they're even capitalized (which is annoying). Don't they have Star Wars? The Dark Side is clearly not a good thing. 2. Again? You really need two very thick books worth of time to choose? I understand that the time passing is way shorter than it feels to people reading about it, but if I wait a year for a sequel, something significant should happen. Is this whole series going to be a buildup to you picking? Because it's on book 4 now and I don't think I can read for that long unless major things happen.
- My voice echoed across the chamber, and I noticed an intricate chandelier hanging from the high, vaulted ceiling. It was made of some kind of smooth, white polished horn, or was it bone? The ironwork held long tapered candles that lit the room with a delicate flickering light, illuminating some corners while leaving other dark and unexposed. - pg. 177
- "L, look at this." Ridley's head whipped toward me, and I froze. I had called Liv "L." There was only one L in my life. Even though Live didn't notice, Ridley did. - Ethan pg. 375
Still a great setting and premise, but not as exciting as the 1st book
Acquired: swapped for on swap.com