Thursday, December 9, 2010

Book Review: Nightshade by Andrea Cremer

Title: Nightshade
Author:  Andrea Cremer
Series: Nightshade #1
ISBN: 039925482X
Publisher:  Philomel
Genre: Paranormal, Romance, Young Adult, Fantasy
Pages: H-454

Synopsis (From Goodreads):  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?

My Reveries and Ramblings: Calla, an alpha werewolf, is set to be mated (or married) to Ren, another alpha werewolf.  When patrolling the woods, Calla comes across Shay in the woods injured and threatened.  By saving his life, she could be sentenced to death.  She doesn’t think she will ever see him again.  When he shows up at school, Calla is asked by her future master to watch over him.  Their newfound friendship turns into love and Calla must not only choose between Ren and Shay but also between playing it safe or learn the truth. 
       Okay, so for starters-I love Ren.  He is attractive, an alpha, hot, nice, caring, hot, confident, hot, and oh, did I mention-hot?  As you can tell-I’m completely team Ren.  Now that I got that out of my system, I can continue.  Calla, the protagonist, is strong, both physically and mentally.  She’s not a push over.  She and her “pack” all attend Mountain High School with Ren and his “pack.”  Andrea Cremer puts an interesting spin on werewolves and the paranormal.  This isn’t your normal werewolf story (you know, all that full-moon-tortured-soul stuff).  This is a love story that forces the reader to feel torn and conflicted.  The characters are very realistic (besides the paranormal element) and layered.  Each one has realities that they are forced to face.  Because they serve their masters they do not have a choice in who they marry (although, they can make requests) or where they live.  Disobedience usually involves death.  The other option, though, is to suffer at the hands of a dark shade-like creature that reminded me a lot of the dementors from the Harry Potter series.  There were several suspenseful scenes; and of course there is a bit of a cliff hanger.        
       I read this book in one day (at the airport and on my flights).  When I finished it, I wasn’t really sure what to think.  I liked it and I didn’t like it.  I thought it was interesting and definitely creative.  I liked the world Cremer built.  However, I really didn’t like Shay.  I wouldn’t mind him being like the “best friend” but I just don’t like him.  Also, I didn’t trust him.  He kept pressuring Calla to do things that if discovered she could be punished/killed.   I decided about a day after I finished it that I liked it and that Shay was the reason why I felt odd about it. I give it 3 kisses.  I can’t wait until the sequel Wolfsbane comes out. 

*If you read the book, highlight the area below, if not then I’m warning you that there are spoilers:
That last scene when Calla asked Ren to give her and Shay some time to get away really showed how much he loved her.  Then she just ripped his heart out (not literally).  That made me so mad.  Poor Ren.  

Book Trailer:

The Playlist:
*note- I included some of the songs from Andrea Cremer's playlist for Nightshade.  Click here for a complete list of all the songs that she used.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones


Steph said...

1. love the new header!
2. Thank you for not having the music be automatic.
3. Great review! love what you said about the characters - isn't it funny how some paranormals can seem so true to life?
LOve Ren, do not want Shay killed but maybe sent off to w wolf witness protection program far away.
Do not like the wizardy keeper types. Mean and selfish and rapists. Yes rape. The other were accept that they rape the teens at well. Wish the older wolves would get spines or grow a pair.
Fangs, Wands and Fairy Dust
twitter: @fangswandsfairy

Small Review said...

This books sounds so much like Blood and Chocolate (I totally recommend it if you haven't already read it!) I'm really curious to read it and see how similar they actually are.

Just from reading reviews, I can't wait to "meet" Ren. He sounds great!

Small Review said...

Looks like you need to set the font color to something that shows up on a black background. :)

Books for Company said...

l also can't wait to find out about the character Ren. Really want to read this, l find it hard to find paranormal books which are unique. Thank you for the review.

Caroline (Bon Bons and Reveries) said...

Yea i know. I'm sorry about the comment color (black on black) i've been trying to fix this. hopefully i'll be able to fix it in the next few days.

Aylee said...

I think yours is the first review I've read that was Team Ren. I wonder which team I'll be when I eventually get around to reading it. Great review!

Laura said...

I am completely team Ren. I wasn't a big fan of Shay, but I was even less a fan of Calla. I didn't like how she strung along both boys through out most of the book. Like you, I liked Nightshade and at the same time I didn't like it.

Alison said...

I just started this one and I'm floundering a bit (still very early into it). Your review makes me want to keep going.

Caroline (Bon Bons and Reveries) said...

That's how I felt but I was stuck on an airplane while reading it so I had nothing else better to do-and I'm glad I did finish it because I liked it-it's just that Shay pissed me off. haha

Jessica said...

I really liked this book too, but I understand your confliction. Despite my loving it, I was conflicted and even confused about some things as well. Will still continue with the series though. I didn't really care for Ren honestly, but towards the end he did make my heart ache with what he was willing to do.

Brenda said...

I was totally team Ren too. I didn't like Shay at all. Hopefully the story from here goes well for us. *crossing fingers*

Jenny said...

Really nice review Caroline! It took me a while to get into this one, I was really confused at the beginning, but then I came to really enjoy the story. I'm decidedly Team Ren as well, though I didn't mind Shay, I actually liked him at times. The more I think about it though, the more I like Ren and can't wait to read more about him in Wolfsbane!

Lady Q said...

Yes! Team Ren all the way! This book didn't send me over the moon, but I did say in my review that if Calla ends up with Ren I'd read the other books. Thanks for hopping by! Happy reading!

Brooke said...

I don't know if I'm Team Ren or Team Shay yet... I'll have to see what happens in the next book. I do think this book has a pretty even 'triangle', though. I like when I don't know who the author will ultimately choose!


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