Review: Nightshade

I received this book for free from ALA in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: NightshadeNightshade by Andrea Cremer
Series: Nightshade #1
Published by Razorbill on October 19, 2010
Genres: Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 452
Format: ARC
Source: ALA
Goodreads
three-stars

Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything- including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?

Nightshade has a flashy, eye-catching cover. Quite beautiful. The chapters, of the ARC at least, each begin with an image of the waxing or waning moon. Also lovely. The publishers have done a lot to make this book appealing and have aesthetically succeeded. Except that these images are not well-matched to the content of the book. As I said, I like the cover art, but there is nothing about Calla that says purple, especially not her hair. Calla also hates makeup and will not wear it for even the fanciest events, so why would the girl on the cover (presumably Calla) be covered in glitter? As for the moon shots, I liked them a lot until I got to the climax of the book, which takes place at the ‘Blood Moon,’ which is described in the book as being a full moon. And yet the moon images at the end of the book are of the moon disappearing entirely. Did no one notice this?

The story itself is certainly melodramatic, as is rather unavoidable when the plot is based entirely around a love triangle. Still, I enjoyed the book and will probably read any sequels fairly eagerly. Cremer has done interesting things with the basic premise of werewolves (which these aren’t really). Her story definitely falls into a more serious fantasy category than the paranormal bandwagon books. I do hope to see some more exposition about the Keepers and Searchers in later volumes, as this one left a lot of information out.

Nightshade falls somewhere between Twilight and Shiver, but I liked it better than both. Elements of the love triangle were certainly frustrating (such as Calla’s inability to suss out her feelings), but I try not hold it against her too much. I did not blame Katniss for that, so Call also deserves a pardon for her circumstances. Paranormal romance fans, this one won’t disappoint you!

2 responses to “Review: Nightshade”

  1. Heidi says:

    You have to stop reading so I can catch up with my tbr list which just keeps growing with every review! Take a vacation…hide all your books…geez…and I thought I was a quick reader.

  2. Christina says:

    Haha, thanks Heidi!

    I actually am reading more slowly than I would like to be. A lot of this YA stuff goes really quickly though, thank goodness.

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