I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: The Graces #1
Published by Amulet Books on September 6, 2016
Source: the publisher
Everyone loves the Graces.
Fenrin Grace is larger than life, almost mythical. He’s the school Pan, seducing girls without really meaning to. He’s biding his time until someone special comes along. Someone different, who will make him wonder how he got along all this time without her. Someone like me.
Fenrin’s twin, Thalia, is a willowy beauty with rippling, honey-colored hair. Wherever she goes, Thalia leaves behind a band of followers who want to emulate her. She casts spells over everyone she encounters, just like Fenrin—even if they both deny it.
Then there’s Summer. She’s the youngest Grace, and the only one who admits she’s really a witch. Summer is dark on the outside—with jet-black hair and kohl-rimmed eyes—and on the inside. It was inevitable that she’d find me, the new girl—a loner with secrets lurking under the surface.
I am River. I am not a Grace. But I’ll do anything to become one.
I knew I had to read this book the second I discovered it. It was basically billed as The Craft for YA readers, which had me REALLY excited since I LOVE that movie! And this book definitely didn’t disappoint! The plot and characters were both mysterious and intriguing and the writing flowed. This was a fast book that had me hooked until the end!
I could absolutely see the Craft comparisons, in so many ways – especially in the behavior of the siblings and the way the townspeople and their classmates treated them. But it also had a “Twilight with witches” vibe, too (which I’ll elaborate on in a bit).
River was an interesting character. I completely pictured her as Sarah from The Craft, but the more I think about it, she was more like a weird combination of Sarah and Nancy. Now, if this doesn’t make sense to you because you’ve never watched The Craft, I advice you to stop reading this review and GO WATCH IT!!!! Then come back and continue reading. At that point, you’ll be like, “OMG YES! I TOTALLY SEE IT!”
I loved the sibling dynamic in this book. Fenrin, Thalia and Summer were so close in so many ways, yet they held tight to certain thoughts and secrets. It made for a very realistic relationship. I could never fully figure Fenrin out, though, and I never fully trusted him. He was such a player and he was hot and cold. There were some intriguing revelations about his character near the middle/end of the book, though, and they made perfect sense and explained a lot! As for Thalia… She reminds me of someone – another character in a movie or TV show or something – and I can’t really place WHO she reminds me of. I’m also still torn on how I feel about her. She had such raw emotions and she felt very real, yet there was just something about her and I can’t quite figure out what it is…
By far my favorite sibling was Summer. There was something mysterious and intriguing about her. She was that girl we all wanted to be friends with in high school, the cool but aloof girl who we all watched from a distance but didn’t dare approach. I also loved her friendship with River, though the ending got pretty intense and insane!
The only major issue I had with this book was the whole “insta-love” situation that was hapening. Usually I don’t care, but it really bugged me this time. Maybe because it was SO intense. The whole plot – at least in the beginning – basically centered around River instantly loving this boy and NEEDING to get in with his mysterious family. This is where the Twilight/Cullen comparisons come from… (Don’t misunderstand, I’m a Twilight fan. But there were definitely some parallels here that were a bit unsettling).
The ending was super twisted and super dark and super crazy and super I DON’T EVEN KNOW HOW TO FEEL. Seriously, I’m still thinking about that ending and feeling just completely mind-blown! I seriously CANNOT wait for book two!!! I HIGHLY recommend this to those who love witches and especially to fans of The Craft!