Thursday, 20 October 2011

Review: Nightshade by Andrea Cremer (Nightshade #1)

Publisher - Atom Books
Publication Date - 28th December 2010
Paperback - 480 pages
Genre - Young Adult/Urban Fantasy

Source - Recieved from publisher for review

Rating - 4 out of 5: I really liked it

Book Info - Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything - including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

My Thoughts - I absolutely loved the mythology behind this book - it is a unique take on the werewolf genre that I have never come across before. The Guardians (werewolves to you and I) have been created by the Keepers; a group of witches who need the Guardians to protect sacred sites. These sites are under threat from the Seekers - another group of witches who wish to find these sites and destroy them. The Keepers are in control of the Guardians, but in exchange for their loyal service they provide the Guardians with anything they could wish for, such as homes/cars/education etc.

Calla, a young Guardian, knows that she must marry Ren and then together they will lead a new pack. This has always been her destiny and she never questions it until she meets Shay - a human boy she seems to feel incredibly attracted to.  Calla is an amazing main character and I loved reading about her jouney from a young and loyal Guardian to somebody who has the courage to find out the truth about her life, and the lives of her fellow Guardians, even though it could prove very hazardous to her health!

Of course there is the usual love triangle that seems to be the staple of most YA novels these days. Calla definitely feels a spark of attraction for Ren in the lead up to their Union but she also finds herself being drawn to Shay as they spend more time together. Although I really liked Shay, I would have liked to find out more about Ren - there's nothing I like more than an alpha male!

There is a huge cliffhanger at the end making me desperate to get my hands on the next book in the series. But I did manage to predict a few elements of the ending quite early on and felt frustrated that Calla couldn't see what was going to happen. But this didn't affect my enjoyment of what was a brilliant debut novel.

Summary - A brilliantly unique take on a genre that has been done many times before, with loveable characters, intriguing plotline, breath-taking action and even some romance thrown in for good measure. If you haven't read this book yet then you need to go out and buy it now!

Other books in this series:
1. Nightshade
2. Wolfsbane
3. Bloodrose

Other reviews of this book:
Dear Author / Girls in the Stacks / Heaven, Hell and Purgatory / Read. Breathe. Relax.


Shelagh said...

Great review Chrissie. :)

I still have to finish my review of Nightshade...

I would've also liked to have seen more of Ren as a character and not just the third spoke in the love triangle.

The mythology Cremer has created is very engaging and I enjoyed it as something slightly different from the 'usual' werewolf story.

I have to say that Calla irritated me at times. She's supposed to be an alpha, so act like it! I think she let herself get dominated too easily and didn't exert enough control over her pack. But that could just be me...

Overall the book was great fun and I also enjoyed Wolfsbane.

The Word Fiend

Stephanie @ Read In a Single Sitting said...

I don't think I've ever read a negative review of this book! Thanks for the great review--I'll have to check out some Cremer at long last.

Stephanie @ Read In a Single Sitting said...

I don't think I've ever read a negative review of this book! Thanks for the great review--I'll have to check out some Cremer at long last.

Chrissie (Once Upon a Series) said...

Shelagh - I can kind of see where you're coming from about Calla. But I think I was so wrapped up in the story that it didn't really bother me too much. I enjoyed Wolfsbane too - even more so than Nightshade :)

Stephanie - This is really a series you should check out! I've loved both books and am now eagerly awaiting Bloodrose. Hope you get to read it soon :)

Amy said...

Great review!Like you I also predicted some of the things that happened. And I so didn't want Ren to be the 'bad' one.
Also, I loved this books so much more than the second >.<

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