Monday, November 14, 2011

Review: "The Lost Saint" by Bree Despain and a Serious, Life-Altering Question...


 Ok, not really about the serious and life-altering part, but I do have a question and it pertains to love triangles...
The love triangle (hereafter L.T. for this post) is a heated topic of conversation in the YA world. You either love them, or hate them, or  maybe you're Switzerland and you just want someone to start making and you really don't care with who. Whom? I don't know...sorry, Dr. Wink and the English Department of my alma mater if you're reading this. Then again, if you're reading this you're probably sorry about a LOT of things in my post-college writerly life...
Anyway: There's a triangle-ish thing going on in this book. And it got me wondering: Is there a book where the main character ends up going with the SECOND guy introduced in the triangle? Example: Any books where Bella chooses Jacob? Because I'm really rooting for Guy #2 in Carrie Jones' "Need" series. If you've read that and you're a little swoony over Astley, please comment. If you're into that big hairy Nick, keep it to yourself!
So....All thoughts on L.T.s are welcome. And now on to The Lost Saint related content:

Summary per Amazon:
The non-stop sequel to The Dark Divine delivers an even hotter romance and more thrilling action than Bree Despain's first novel.  Grace Divine made the ultimate sacrifice to cure Daniel Kalbi.  She gave her soul to the wolf to save him and lost her beloved mother.  When Grace receives a haunting phone call from Jude, she knows what she must do.  She must become a Hound of Heaven.  Desparate to find Jude, Grace befriends Talbot - a newcomer to town who promises her that he can help her be a hero.  But as the two grow closer, the wolf grows in Grace, and her relationship with Daniel begins to crumble.  Unaware of the dark path she is walking, Grace becomes prideful in her new abilities - not realizing that an old enemy has returned and deadly trap is about to be sprung.  Readers, ravenous for more Grace and Daniel, will be itching to sink their teeth into The Lost Saint.

 My Review:
There were things about the Dark Divine that bothered me, but I liked it enough to start reading the sequel immediately after I finished it. (My general rule is a 4 star book rating means Liked It, whereas a 5 star rating would be Loved It.)
I found myself actually enjoying The Lost Saint quite a bit, even though the things that bothered be in Book 1 were still present--weird descriptions, distracting dialogue, etc.
The thing that made this book more enjoyable for me was that Grace is struggling to keep herself from falling to the wolf and having a classic good angel vs. bad angel dilemma (or in this case, Good Girl/Big Bad Wolf). I guess I just like slightly evil characters, because I found myself often agreeing with the Wolf voice in her head when it tried to tempt her to the dark side.
As others have noted, this book has the typical YA romance sequel problem of the couple finding themselves pulled apart by a) secrets b) lack of communication and/or c)possible attraction to other people. I don't know why this happens so much in YA series lately, but you'd think after a couple overcomes supernatural threats and DEATH for crying out loud, they'd at least be able to have an honest conversation and avoid dumb misunderstandings.
I found Daniel's secretive and sullen behavior frustrating, although I can see how retreating into himself when he is upset and worried probably isn't out of character. And Grace continues to have a Savior complex and do really stupid things while trying to help. But I can forgive a character being stupid as long as it seems like something they would actually do. Despain does a good job of getting us inside her characters' heads so that we know what makes them tick.
Which brings me to Talbot, a new character I actually liked quite a bit. His motives seem clear, but they're not. He seems like an all-around good guy. You know what they say about someone who's too good to be true. And I liked how the story ended with him. Plus, he's the source of some much needed action and butt-kicking. :)
Jude returns in this book, and I was surprised (but pleasantly so) that his storyline didn't have a nice neat little ending. But Jude is also the source of my biggest complaint with this book. When he sends messages to Grace to warn her of danger, there is no reason for him to be so vague. If you knew a person was going after your family, and you wanted to protect them, wouldn't you say specifically what the danger was and WHO was a threat? Hazy warnings like, "He's not what you think. You're in danger," are unbelievable and seem like a plot device used specifically to build suspense at the expense of logic.
The ending was certainly unexpected (at least to me), but it's a cliffhanger and now I'm stuck waiting until December to find out how they get out of the mess they're in. I'm interested enough to wonder what comes next, so that makes it a good read in my opinion.

1 comment:

  1. Enjoyed your review! And as for love triangles - can't stand them! I mean honestly, have you ever known anyone in a love triangle? They simply aren't realistic, and are annoying to boot! Can't think of any off the top of my head where guy #2 gets the girl, but would love to read that!


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