Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Book Review: Dark Companion

TITLE: Dark Companion
AUTHOR: Marta Acosta
GENRE: Retelling, drama, paranormalish, mystery
PREMISE: A girl goes to a boarding school and tries to solve a mystery.
MY REVIEW: You ever read a book and feel like the author was just way too impressed with themselves? Like they thought their book was oh so totally unique and a surefire classic that people would praise off the bat? Sometimes it's in the condescending tone of the book or the MC but I don't know about you, for me this is a turn off. Author, I'm sorry, this wasn't a literary masterpiece: it was average at best.
Basically this is a modern retelling of Jane Eyre set in a boarding school. Because heaven knows we don't have enough classic retellings out there and I certainly didn't read a retelling of this same book last year which was also modern day nor have I ever read a ton of fanfic like it. On the bright side, Acosta does have really nice prose and she's great at setting up atmosphere and all those things that should make up a great novel. She just didn't think outside the box very much so the book wound up being very yawn worthy. Didn't help that I found the main character extremely boring (I don't even remember her name, she's that dull and I read this last week).
I suppose as far as first books go, this could be worse. Like I said, the writing is great. It's just really dull. Also authors, a PSA: basing your book on a classic piece of literature does not automatically mean your book is literary and going to be a classic. Also if you are going to do quotes at the begining of each chapter, please have them have something to do with the chapter in question. Or at least with the book itself. Otherwise, it's just dumb and makes you look slightly pompous even if this was not your intention. Also kind of tacky: having discussion questions at the end of your book when it first comes out. It makes it look like you and your publisher seriously think your book is important enough to teach and it sort of implies your readers aren't smart enough to pick up these ideas on their own. Put the questions up on your book's website if you must, but otherwise, leave it.
WHO SHOULD READ: fans of Jane Eyre
MY RATING: Three out of Five yawns

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