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3.3 out of 5 stars22
3.3 out of 5 stars
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Crystal Cove is number four in the `Friday Harbor' series, however, it can be read and enjoyed as a standalone, so if you haven't read the other novels in the series then don't worry because you can still grab a copy of Crystal Cove to devour!

Justine has a wonderful life, but the only thing that is missing is love. However, she soon discovers that a spell was cast on her when she was born, meaning that she can never find her soul mate - and Justine sets out to change this. Enter the mysterious Jason Black, who is hiding secrets of his own...

I loved all of the Friday Harbor books so far and this was no exception. I read the entire book in one sitting - as soon as I opened the page I was swept up in Justine's world and became very involved with her story, so much that I couldn't put it down and when I finally looked up from the book I realised that a whole afternoon had flown by!

The characters were fascinating. Justine is especially well-written as a strong character and I liked her from the beginning! I loved the relationship and the chemistry between Justine and Jason, they had me hooked to the book and I was turning the pages as quick as I could so that I could find out what happened next between them. The love story was my favourite part of the book, and I found myself re-reading scenes so that I could re-live them.

I especially love the magical/witchcraft aspect of Crystal Cove. I have always been a fan of books with magic in and Lisa Kleypas knows how to expertly weave this into a gripping story with a fulfilling plot line. This aspect of the story had me constantly intrigued and kept me guessing throughout.

Crystal Cove is enchanting, it is romantic and full of sizzling scenes too! Not only is there romance, but many thrilling scenes and some very good twists to keep you guessing. I'm very much looking forward to the next book - This is another brilliant novel from Lisa Kleypas.
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on 18 December 2013
That's the one word to sum up the book for me - stupid.

I cannot believe that Lisa Kleypas wrote this absolute drivel. The book was one of the worst books I've ever read, and it's such a disappointment to me given the fact that the series have been one of my favourites.

I've loved the insertion of magic and the supernatural into these books, it was so unlike what I was used to from Kleypas but I thought she pulled it off really well. Alex and Zoe's story was beautiful as were Lucy and Sam's. Justine and Jason however, the story couldn't have left me more cold or empty inside.

Their chemistry felt forced and contrived, the plot was riddled with holes, and the concept that this story was built around was weak and uninteresting. Justine is so desperate for love that she's tried every spell in the book to get it, until she realizes she's cursed and breaks the curse somehow. Step in Jason, who does not have a soul - literally. He wants the magic Justine has to try and extend his lifespan.

Justine and Jason meet - fireworks. Not. Well, Kleypas would have liked us to feel the fireworks she attempted to create with her writing, but I think she failed miserably. Instead it felt silly how the minute they met they decided they were oh-so-in-love with each other, and Jason immediately began to act like he has the right to control every one of Justine's actions, and became an overbearing pig.

There was nothing attractive about Jason. And nothing attractive about Justine. This strong, hilarious, sarcastic, clever, witty character that I met in all the previous books is gone when she starred in her own story. I think Kleypas is trying to send us the message that when you're capable of falling in love your entire character changes and you become an annoying, silly, whiny person. And Jason? He is one of my least liked heroes that I've ever read about, I wanted nothing to do with this man.

And the magic? I mean, a touch of magic is good. But this book had an overdose of magic! Every other line talked about some spell, or witch, or curse. It was very irritating. The supernatural and the magic is always better written when it's unexplained. When it's just there - a part of the story, without really being a part of the story. The way Kleypas wrote the previous installments of the series and the way Cecelia Ahern wrote There's No Place Like Here and If You Could See Me Now, which are absolutely brilliant books.

But when you take it to the next level, and go into the history of spells and witchcraft and spell books and gypsies and traditions and I don't know what, it starts to feel like you are trying too hard. If Lisa Kleypas chose to focus more on the actual storyline than the history of witchcraft, I think she could've taken this book into a completely different direction, and perhaps saved it.

However, what we are left with, is one of the most boring love stories that I have ever read. And once I finished it, I was feeling very irritated and was in fact rooting for both characters to just drop dead.
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on 14 February 2013
I have read all of Kleypas' novels. I have enjoyed them all, especially those in the historical genre.
I feel she is not as good at writing a contemporary novel, but those in the Friday Harbour Series so far have been good light reads.
I found reading this novel a chore. The hero was uninspiring, the heroine insipid. Kleypas missed a trick by not getting Marigold involved earlier and building the tension between her and Justine.
Not enough was made of Jason's scheming to obtain Justine's grimoire: he fell too easily, so you might miss that he wanted to know Justine just for the book alone. Justine's link with the other characters within it are fairly tenuous; the plot weak; the ending predictable.
To be honest, I felt this was just a way of perpetuating the series: churning out a story because the publishers have demanded it.
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VINE VOICEon 10 February 2013
Did not enjoy this book as much as the others in the series. First of all I'm not that into stories featuring quite this much witchcraft although to be fair to Lisa Kleypas it was done quite well - it seemed like she had done enough research to make it seem vaguely plausible. What really didn't work for me was the instant and ongoing chemistry between Jason and Justine. He is meant to be a mysterious, demanding, loner and yet falls for her far too quickly and easily. All of the obstacles to their romance revolved around witches bane and his lack of a soul. All rather irritating and pointless. There is no logical way out for them so their HEA can only really be brought about by yet more supernatural stuff. Shame about all the witchcraft - would have been more interesting with normal human problems and resolutions.
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on 23 January 2014
Lisa Kleypas one of my most favourite authors. I have all her books but this one I just did not understand!
I have read the previous 3 Friday Harbor series which were great. Crystal cove had such good premise but it never happened, WHY LISA????? It felt rushed and the love story was dominated by witchcraft and can two people really have that much wrong with them in the supernatural sense! A witch who had so much power and didn't use it, why not? I really thought that Justine and Jason would have worked together to find the solution together knowing how strong here powers were and the conclusion was so short I needed just a little more of their happy ever after to satisfy the long journey it took to get there!!!!!
Just disappointing knowing Lisa usually writes so fantastically well!
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I prefer this author's historical novels, but the Friday Harbour series has been pretty heartwarming, if lacking in the depth and passion that her early novels were full of. In this, I felt as if I barely got to know the characters, but perhaps this was the point the author was trying to make - he lacked a soul and she lacked love. The tale felt cold, despite all the magic, the flames, the sparks of electricity and all.

Jason seemed too cold and calculating in his motives for coming to Crystal Cove, and I didn't feel the love that he allegedly had for Justine, even though the author wrote his admission of love in a way, and in a particular place in the novel, to try to make us believe in his love being stronger than his desire for Justine's grimoire. Justine herself came across as a cold fish - she had none of the warmth of Zoe or Megan.

The tale was told with skill, and I think that the author researched her subject well, but the element of witchcraft was too OTT for a romance novel, and ended up overshadowing the romance. As to the ending, barely a month after the leads had met? It didn't ring true. And, lesbian OAPS? Really? Again, it ties in with the legacy of the witches, but I didn't expect that.

One to miss, I'm afraid, though the others in the series are decent, but her historicals are not to be missed.
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on 8 March 2013
The story falls far below her earlier contemporary novels such as Sugar Daddy. I was not interested in the paranormal theme.
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on 24 March 2013
I read most of Lisa Kleypas' other books and enjoyed them - particularly the contemporary ones. But this was a real disappointment (I am just grateful that, thanks to other reviews, I got it from the library and didn't spend more than the reservation fee on it...)

For me, she has just used too many standard story lines and mixed them all together without following through in developing them. Magic - check. Curse - check. Problem with mean parent - check. Hero betrays heroine, but is forgiven for love - check. Really rich, reclusive guy who instantaneously falls in love with independent minded heroine - check. Etc pp. but all the problems resolve themselves way too easily. Much too formulaic and shallow to allow me to suspend disbelief. (And I read and enjoyed Julie Ann Long - I am really not demanding realism!)

And the sex scenes made me cringe... Not sure bondage comes naturally to her. And he was so arrogant out of bed that I struggled to find the masterfulness appealing in bed.
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on 6 February 2013
I generally enjoy light romance novels - and have loved Kleypas' Hathaway family - this fourth book is unbelievable disappointing - empty of meaning, a long excursus into witchcraft/covens and power it reminded me of an unsubtle Nora Roberts without the charm. Set against the earlier books in this same series the character development is limited, the hero bland and the main female protagonist dull. Even the tension between mother/daughter is devoid of real depth and angst. Utterly disappointed.
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on 27 February 2013
Probably my least favourite Kleypas novel, not a patch on her historical novels. Also the worst of the Friday Harbor series.
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