Friday, September 28, 2012

ARC Review : Death and the Girl Next Door (DarkLight #1) by Darynda Jones

Is it the Grim Reaper, or Angel of Death. No, it’s a SuperNova!
Title: Death and the Girl Next Door 
Author: Darynda Jones 
Series: Dark Light Publisher: MacMillan / St. Martin’s Press
My ratings: 3.5 out of 5 stars. 
Releases: 2nd October, 2012
 Lorelei has visions of the past or the future if she touches someone. One day she accidently touches someone and sees a vision which she simply can’t take off her mind. That is not her only problem. The school loner, Cameron has started stalking her. So, when suddenly the guy who gave Lorelei the disturbing visions, turns up at school, trying to be friends with her, can she trust him? He is the best-looking guy she has ever met and he seems to be interested in her but everything is not as it seems. Then after school, Jared saves Lorelei’s life from a freak road accident but Cameron seemed to think it was Jared who was trying to kill her. Then all hell breaks loose with each of them trying to kill each other and Lorelei sets her eyes on solving the mystery behind these two guys. I wished I liked Death and the Girl Next Door better. I really did have high hopes from this book. I was Darynda Jones adult series (Charlie Davidson, read my review here) and was eagerly anticipating the release of her new YA series. Perhaps I went into it with too high expectations or maybe it wasn’t me after all. I did not enjoy it as much I thought I would. It was full with Darynda Jones’ witty dialogues and funny situations. She is the queen in crafting out friendships and relationships. I also love the tension and the mystery she builds around the story line. Death and the Girl Next Door had it all. Larger than life, sweet characters whose banter will make you laugh out loud. However for me personally it didn’t do it. I could not like Lorelei. She felt childish to me and if not foolish. She had this tendency to run in to situations blindly or maybe it is a common YA heroine trait. For example, she just saw Jared and Cameron shooting at each other. I mean shooting at each other with real guns and instead of running for cover she tries to physically get between the two fighting hulks.. She has a massive crush on Jared and is willing to sacrifice her life for someone she has only just met the day before.

“My heart stilled in my chest. I couldn’t believe what he’d just said. A supernatural being changed history to just to see me. Me. Wait, he’d been to Heaven?” 

Jared on the other hands, reminded me of Reyes from the Charlie Davidson Series. The smart, sexy and dangerous works time and time again and catches YA heroines (and of course me too) each time. Tattooed, muscled and broody Jared is sure to win many hearts. But Darynda has already stolen mine by through Reyes. Personally, I thought the attraction between Lorelei and Jared could have been played out slightly longer. It seemed all very rushed and cramped.

“You energy is liquid and hot. Even a distance you burn, you scorch anyone who gets too close. You are wine on my tongue and honey in my veins, and I cannot get enough of you.” 
Moving on, Lorelei’s friends were fun to read about with Brooke’s loyalty and Glitch’s Manly insights were funny to read about. I’m not very keen on the love triangle between friends which may be developing here. I’m not against love triangles but usually like them around the main characters of the story.

“I’m totally open.” He starched his arms wide to prove it. “I’m an open book, an open door, an open sign that blinks in red and blue neon.” 
“Your fly’s open too,” Cameron said.” Darynda Jones had said in an interview that she had written Death and the Girl Next Door before her Charlie Davidson Series and unfortunately, it shows. Despite being a good plot with interesting, multi-faceted characters, I felt it could have been done properly. Or perhaps I’m simply being old and grumpy. Regardless of my whingeing, I definitely read the next book, Death doom and Detention in the Dark Light series.

Releases on 2nd of October, 2012. 

ARC provided by publisher via NetGalley.


Braine TS on September 29, 2012 at 2:47 AM said...

I just reviewed this myself. My complaint about the story is about the myth, how can a Nephilim beat an Archangel? I live the banter though.

Alexa on September 29, 2012 at 10:28 PM said...

Well Jared sounds steamy as can be but there has to be more to a story than just a great male lead. Sorry that this one fell flat for you.

Thanks for the great review though. :)

Escapism Fanatic on September 30, 2012 at 9:26 PM said...

Banter was great, Braine. That's why I love Darynda but this book sort of didn't do it for me.

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