Still my favorite YA series!
Reviewed in the United States on 13 June 2013
Well, this book definitely went where not many of its genre have dared to venture before (at least what I've had the pleasure of reading) and, boy, did it surprise, shock and excite me. There were several scenes/happenings where I just had to glance away from my kindle to ask: Did this really just happen? REALLY??? And for a book catching me off guard and genuinely surprising me, I give the author heaps of credit, plus, to be able to take the story in the directions it went needed courage for the writer. Respect!
That aside, I read this book in one go and it came across quite short, even though, there was plenty of action, and wow, what action-movie level scenes they were, and more than enough romance and edge-of-your-seat intense moments. Again, I can't stress enough how I absolutely adore the dynamics of the Merrick family and the people that have gotten close to them. How they handled Hunter in this book was too awesome to describe. It was realistic considering the circumstances and, also at the same time, it made my heart ache from happiness and annoyance for both sides. However, more happiness, definitely.
The major conflict of the series is still present and I don't think there will ever be a definite solution to the Merrick's issue, but, who knows. Some quite interesting possibilities were raised and hinted at regarding the five points of the pentagram, so, I'm definitely waiting for development in that direction in future books. This book came across substantially darker than the first ones due to several reasons and this also kind of took it apart from other YA with its maturity and unusual twists. I also liked that all the bonds formed in pervious books were still going strong and there were glimpses to the on goings in their lives aside from the main couple. Everyone contributed and the interactions were constant.
Why I can't give the book maximum points even though I desperately want to? It basically follows the same story pattern as the pervious two books and while it's effective and appropriate, it slightly felt like a copy of what has already been done. But no need to worry, there is too much going on to dwell on similarities, and several elements that make the book distinctive, exciting and brilliant.
In previous books, Hunter seemed so in control and confident, but in this book we definitely see another side and what's under the hard exterior and it isn't all sunshine. He has conflicts with so many people due to misconceptions, unfairness and lack of trust, that I was surprised he didn't snap or suffer a complete mental breakdown. Despite everything, he managed to remain the same detached, but nice guy with a lot of baggage. He was a great hero, someone you just were forced to root for.
Kate remained slightly distant, not because she wasn't distinct, didn't have a personality or enough insight wasn't provided, she just came across untouchable and cool next to Hunter's emotional turmoil. She did surprise me on several occasions and, all in all, I think she was just right for Hunter.
Have I already said how much I love the whole Merrick family and their posse? Well, I do and in this book Michael definitely upped his game and made me admire him even more than I already have.
A great addition to the series, managing to surprise me and take the storyline to places I wasn't ever in a million years expecting. I need to know what will become of all and for that I'm counting down the days to the next installment (Nick's story).
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