Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Review - Devoured by Amanda Marrone (3/5 stars)

I love fairy tale retellings, so I was excited to read this modern day retelling of Snow White.  This ended up being an okay book but definitely didn't blow me away.  The book was fairly engaging but not all that fairy tale like; I found the interpretation of the fairy tale to be a bit bizarre.

Megan's life changed as a result of a horrible car crash.  Her father is in a coma, her mom is obsessed with doing dancing routines with their dog, and Megan is haunted by the ghost of her twin sister Remy.  When Megan's boyfriend Ryan gets a job with his best friend Samantha to work at The Land of Enchantment (a fairy tale themed amusement park); Megan decides to get a job there too in order to keep on eye on Ryan and his supposed "friendship" with Samantha.  Once Megan accepts the job things start getting bizarre.  Remy's ghost really starts cranking up the heat and showing Megan gory and bizarre images; then Megan meets Luke who can also see Remy's ghost.  Megan also meets the overly jealous Ari.  Now it is up to Megan to figure out what Remy wants before things get out of hand and people start dying.

The premise of this novel is a bit bizarre.  Just the fact that Megan gets a job with her boyfriend because she doesn't trust him doesn't make her a very likable character.  The whole point of this book is to show how jealousy can destroy a person and it does that in spades.  Oh and also supposedly there is a curse that involves a magic mirror that has been influencing Ari's family. 

The writing is pretty average and the book itself is fairly engaging.  I never really got bored with it but the plot is a bit confused.  First Megan is trying to figure out what Remy is trying to tell her, then she is convinced that letting her dad die is the way to get Remy of her case.  Somehow this all leads up to a serial killer being on the loose.  Woven into all this is a lot of teenage angsting about how Megan should be faithful to Ryan even though she has the hots for Luke and Ryan obviously wants to get with Samantha anyway.  I personally don't get into all the teenage relationship blather, but that is probably because I am not a teenager anymore...actually I don't think I got into when I was a teenager either...

The characterization is okay, I liked Luke a lot but the rest of the characters are pretty grey in tone. 

Overall the book was okay.  It was a fairly engaging read and was interesting.  It was not at all fairy-tale like but was done more like a ghost/serial killer murder mystery kind of thing.  It was actually pretty creepy at parts.  It loosely ties into the Snow White story.  Everything about this book was just okay.  If you are into murder mysteries and fairy tale retellings you might really enjoy this book.  I personally didn't love it and won't be reading anything else by Marrone.  I would recommend Beastly by Alex Flinn or Briar Rose by Jane Yolen if you are into modern day fairy tale retellings that actually stick with the fairy tale and have some depth of meaning to them.

This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
- The Young Adult Reading Challenge
- The 100+ Book Reading Challenge
- Summer Romance Reading Challenge

1 comment:

  1. Hmm. I like retellings too but this one sounds rather bizarre and not sure I'd really get into the story. Thanks for the review!