Author: Caragh M. O’Brien
Recommend: If you read Birthmarked, this is a great follow-up.
I mostly loved the first book in this series and couldn’t wait to get my hands on the other two. I’ve got a reading pile a mile high but I jumped this close to the top when I got them in. I was not disapointed when I got into the second book.
A second book can sometimes be a bit risky. I’ve seen many authors completely bomb book two by following something far too formulaic. If it is too similar to a popular series like Twilight or The Hunger Games, the reader is going to be turned off because it is just going to feel like a rip off of either one. This book, doesn’t fall into that trap or many of the others that can befall book number two.
The biggest thing this author did right was the love square. First of all, she admits it’s a problem. Second, she actually makes the choice hard on the main character. As I reader, I actually like both of the guys she doesn’t choose better and so you actually feel bad for them. I get why she had the main character make the choice that she did, but for once it wasn’t clear cut, in my opinion.
I also thought the conflict between Gaia and the main female character was amazingly well done. I wanted to reach through the cover and smack them both – repeatedly but I was also able to be sympathetic towards both characters.
I think the biggest flaw in this book was that in the effort to make it not all about solving the puzzle, it was almost too easy and the information showed up far too late. It would have been much better if the information about her grandmother had been doled out in smaller pieces rather than handed to the reader all at once. The author needed to spread that out more. I also think that sometimes the emotional reactions of the characters were just a bit off but it could all be explained away with what Gaia finds out at the end – I guess.
Throw in a visit to the stocks, the most disturbing autopsy I’ve ever read and more drama than I knew what to do with, this was a great follow up and I can’t wait to get started on the third (which I just might do as soon as I finish up this review).