Top positive review
11 people found this helpful
Fresh, unique and engaging. This book is perfect.
on 19 May 2011
Kate and her sister Georgia move to Paris after the death of their parents, to stay with their grandparents. They both deal with their grief in opposite but realistic ways. Kate retreats into herself, whilst Georgia goes out, keeping up her party girl lifestyle from New York. This was a really interesting part of the story for me, because Amy Plum managed to describe these two pretty standard coping mechanisms without them seeming cliche or OTT, which I thought was very clever. Georgia's character was also very stereotypical, but done in a way that it to wasn't at all cliche, and you really liked her and sympathised with her even though it would have been really easy for her to be mis-written slightly and hated.
Kate eventually gets pushed by Georgia and her 'Mamie' to start going out more, and so begins to visit museums and read outside cafes, in very typical Paris fashion. I loved all the descriptions of the cafes and art galleries etc that Kate visits, they were all done very well, it gave you a really vivid snapshot of Paris, without feeling like Amy Plum was driving home the point that she'd set her book somewhere different, which I liked. Cue Vincent, the love interest. What I liked about this book the most was Kate's reaction to Vincent. It was so realistic. She was obviously attracted to his good looks, but at the same time she was wary enough to not go falling for him in an instant. I loved their sarcastic banter, it was a really great way to show their flirtation and the development of their relationship. In fact, I love the way Amy writes full stop, honestly I think it's fantastic, I just can't put my finger on exactly why, which I think is a good thing. There's something about some authors that means their writing just pulls you in from the word go, and Amy is one of these authors. Kate could be a bit paranoid at times, but then, most girls would be when faced with a beautiful and mysterious stranger. To me, it felt a bit like Amy wanted to re-write the Twilight Romance, but from a more believable, more three-dimensional, less annoying angle. It's not instant love at first sight, it's an attraction that develops, which was nice to see, and it was also nice to see the male being the more dependent for once.
I really loved the whole concept of the Revenants too, it was a refreshing and interesting idea. I loved all their individual backstories, which again reminded me a bit of Twilight, but yeah, better. It really helped you connect with the characters, and feel for them, but it was done in a nicely subtle way not an obvious "I want you to feel sympathy for these characters so I'm just gonna thrust their sob stories on you and hope for the best". Out of all the Revenants we get introduced too I really liked Charlotte, she was a fantastic character, really likeable. I loved Jules as well, I think I actually prefer him to Vincent-and I'm hoping their *may* be a bit of a love triangle developing there...
I really really expected Kate to have some, mystical supernatural power or destiny or something. It seemed to be subtly hinted at through the book. Now either, this is gonna be developed in the later books, or it was a clever ploy by Amy to mislead the reader. Eitherway it was cleverly done. I figured out a few of the plot twists, but I thought the way the whole story of the Revenants was released slowly, bit by bit was really excellently done, because it made you desperately want to keep reading it.
All in all, there were quite a few basic similarities to Twilight; such as the family who wasn't really a family, their traumatic stories of how they became to be who they are, Vincent's lack of previous relationships...plus they were all a bit obsessed with the idea of having a human girl in their midst..except for one. But honestly, the story was so fantastic and so well written, you are only fleetingly aware of these comparisons before you're sucked once again into the story. Kate is a fantastic character, really believable and realistic, and I really applaud Amy Plum on the world and the story she's created. It's so fresh, and vibrant, and new, yet retaining enough about the genre that it can be enjoyed by people who have loved books such as the Wicked Lovely series, the Mortal Instruments and Infernal Devices books, and yes, I suppose Twilight too.
I give this book a well-deserved 5/5 and I really recommend it to fans of YA paranormal romance, especially those who are maybe a bit tired of the standard vampire etc stories.