Friday, January 4, 2013

Brightest Kind of Darkness (Tweenage love meets Final Destination)

This book was a half and half for me. On the plus, I thought the writing was well done, particularly in the beginning of the book. Nara starts out as a strong main character. Even with crap going on in her life, she still tries to do the right thing, she stands up for herself and handles her oddity of seeing her day through her dreams quite well. Ethan starts out great too, it seems like they're on even footing. But after the midway point, it shrivels like a grape left out in the sun too long.

Dream Oddity #1: The first dream that differentiates from her norm starts at the beginning of the book when she realizes that a bomb is going to go off in her school and calls in the threat. This starts the sequence of events that propels the entire book. After all, Ethan was supposed to die and a great many of her friends were supposed to get badly injured. When this doesn't happen, her dreams change. After all, she's rarely dared interfere with what's to come before.

Dream Oddity #2: Ethan, a newer kid at school, doesn't appear in her dreams. She's drawn to him from the start which precipitates the romance to follow (which could've been good but went kind of south). First off, ever since she meets him, she gets flashes of disgusting things, monsters (which are part of his magical mojo) but he's also the start of her not getting her dreams any more (also his fault). They fall in love and through the book it's revealed that when he's around her, he doesn't soak up people's negativity, but she also doesn't get to have her preview of the day any more.

Dream Oddity #3: Her dreams start going off the rails and things happen in real life that didn't happen in the dreams. As they challenge the force that's trying to kill her, things keep turning out differently in her dreams and changing. Since Ethan is the one seeing her dreams (which seems a little stalkerish IMO) he's surprised when he doesn't see sections, like when Fate decided to attack her in the bathroom and knock her down. All of these changes lead to the final confrontation when it/he/Fate nearly kills her.

My big qualm was Fate as a bad guy. Yes, it's been done in Final Destination. And those movies are cheesy/fun, bad movies. Every interaction where Nara challenged him seemed rather silly. Go away, Fate! *shakes fist in the air* Plus, when he manifests and talks to her? Conversing with such a strong, omnipresent force comes off as comical, not serious. My other issue was personality. In the beginning, Nara was a great character, but after the midway point she turns sniveling and passive, constantly having to be saved by Ethan. Not a good way to win points in the heroine category.

Rating: 3

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