I really have to start writing reviews faster!
Author: Josephine Angelini
Release date: 31st of May 2011
Series: Starcrossed #1
Reading level: FICTION – JUVENILE: Romance, YA, Fantasy
Published by: HarperTeen
Pages: 501 in Kindle e-book format
Source: Bought from Amazon.com for Kindle
When shy, awkward Helen Hamilton sees Lucas Delos for the first time she thinks two things: the first, that he is the most ridiculously beautiful boy she has seen in her life; the second, that she wants to kill him with her bare hands. With an ancient curse making them loathe one another, Lucas and Helen have to keep their distance. But sometimes love is stronger than hate, and not even the gods themselves can prevent what will happen...
Unpopular opinion alert!
I have to admit, if I hadn’t read as much YA before taking on this book, then I would have definitely taken it more lightly and even liked the book, as it however stands, this was a compilation of clichés and plot devices that have slowly and steadily appeared on my “avoid at all costs” list. There was no love triangle – yet – but everything else I try to steer clear of was represented. So, I’m probably more harsher than I should be, but I can’t lie to myself.
Same old same old, is what comes to mind first. So let’s start with some of the aspects that didn’t have me singing for joy:
Helen, the heroine, was so gorgeous, but of course, didn’t see herself as this goddess, she was so over powerful that it was boring, but still needed constant protection and whined when she needed to train, and she was simply dull with a side dish of mopey, weird (the non-cute kind), insecure, childish and Mary Sue. How can a character, if we look at her stats: descendant of gods, awesome powers, dazzling looks, endless capabilities, such history and potential – be such a blob? She was the worse kind of special snowflake, a mixture of all the YA heroines I’m not fond of.
Insta love is a device that needs to disappear or at least be believable and try to come across slightly natural. In this case, I felt that it was too rushed and left me asking “Uh? When? What? How?” The romance, having started with such cliche-ness, I felt there was only one step from hating to endless love, no actual development and it didn’t leave space for the most important component, which is chemistry. There were some adorable moments between Lucas and Helen, I won’t deny that, but the overall atmosphere and course of their relationship wasn’t entirely original or exciting.
The we-are-siblings-and-thus-can’t-be-together-but-actually-aren’t trope needs to be buried deep deep underground. It just aids in stalling the plot and encourages love triangles. Also, adding here the we-shouldn’t-be-together-because-it-means-the-end-of-the-world is just too much for me to bear.
Please let’s also stop with the annoying, overly opinionated and obtrusive best friends, Claire was a wacko.
It’s not all bad though, there were some aspects that were quite intriguing, but were overshadowed by the bothersome stuff:
The overall plot and backstory of the book was actually quite decent and a fresh take on Greek mythology. Even me, who knows her Greek gods, goddesses and legends, and thus, is prone to read everything related to it, hasn’t encountered anything overly similar in other stories in regards to what aim and form the mythology took in this book. Then again, nothing really surprised me and I figured out several things before they, I'm guessing, were meant to be revealed.
I actually grew really fond of Hector. He seemed to be the only voice of reason, didn’t hesitate to act or tell things how they were and seemed to be the only one who actually DID something when needed. Pluss, his fate is quite intriguing and I hope I wasn’t the only one who saw potential in the end with him and “her”…
I quite liked the huge family dynamics and the big cast of characters as well.
The idea had potential and the whole plot was so promising, but what can you do when annoying clichés dominate and the redeeming factors are scarce. I know that this is a very popular series and I’m in the minority, but I have to be honest, this book wasn’t for me.