Published September 3rd 2015 by Bookouture
YA > Fantasy
eARC for Review
BLURB FROM GOODREADS:
Sacha Winters can’t die. Until his eighteenth birthday he is invincible. On that day it all ends for Sacha – the result of a curse that has plagued his family for centuries.
His death will fulfil the curse – and unleash a wave of destruction. He has no idea how to stop it, only the cryptic notes left behind by his father, and a strange connection with a girl he has only just met to guide him.
Taylor Montclair is a quiet, studious girl focused on her dream of getting into Oxford University. She’s also the only one who can save Sacha. Only neither of them knows that yet. And Sacha lives hundreds of miles away, in Paris.
Taylor and Sacha have eight weeks to find each other. To unravel the secrets buried in their families’ past. And to discover the power that lies within them.
Sacha’s life, and the fate of the world depends on it. The clock starts NOW.
So, apparently, books can suck from page one right up until the last page, and I have become tolerant enough to read the entire book.
Don’t get me wrong; this book did have good parts. There was the cover, obviously. Ooooh and the font, goodness gracious the font of the cover is so fantastic. But that’s where the good parts end. For reals.
If you find a more perfect, sweeter, more beautiful girl than Taylor Montclair, I will cut my hair off for real. Taylor was a total wet dream—non-rebellious, perfect grades, caring for and always helping her good-for-nothing best friend, unable to break up with psycho boyfriend because she’s afraid it will hurt his psycho feelings.
In other words, she was unbearable and made me feel nauseous. I don’t quite know how long it will take authors in general to grasp that people, real people are never so perfect. They make mistakes, they fuck up majorly, they stumble and fall and that’s how they learn. All these trials and problems and screw ups is what makes them human. But if you’re going to give me a character like Taylor Montclair who is so ridiculously flawless, then it goes without saying that I’m not going to be able to empathize with her in any way. Hannah Montana said “Nobody’s Perfect,” you guys. Doesn’t get any more real than that.
And okay. You’re trying to show a teen that thinks only about excelling at her studies all the time? Fucking fine! You’re giving me a teen that is supposed to be so kind she’s won an award for it? Great! But excuse me because I didn’t see any of this. Taylor was very condescending in nature, always eager to show her best friend that she was better in every way.
And of course, this:
“He didn’t like studying. She wasn’t interested in sport. He had no career ambitions that she recognised—she didn’t consider rugby a valid career path.” – ARC, location 499
Where in the fuck is the kind, caring girl that we’re supposed to see because all I see is a fucking idiot who is quick to judge and obviously ignorant of the world around her.
To be honest, I didn’t mind Sacha so much. In fact, he was the only reason I continued to read the book, considering I was always looking forward to his chapters. They were well written—better than the Taylor chapters—and his POV was where all the action was.
Sacha Winters was a daredevil, but not out of choice. He could do whatever he liked—jump off buildings, get shot in the face, whatever—but he couldn’t be killed. It was a bizarre concept for sure, and it was one that kept me entertained. A teenage boy, running around in Paris doing all kinds of things that would lead to his death but being unable to die? Of course the entire catch is that he gets these “perks” only for eight weeks more. On his eighteenth birthday, Sacha will die.
But his dying has consequences beyond just his lack of existence. And the consequences are not the good kind. And so he has to find a way to stop himself from dying and that’s where Taylor comes in because she’s the only one who can save him.
Sacha’s POV was full of motorcycles and action and shooting and the cheeky Sacha himself. Again, even that turns to shit the moment that Taylor comes into his life—but at least he was more worried about dying than the girl who gives him a boner. Their interactions were cheesy and there is no “romance,” only teenage hormones.
The last 25% is when the story really picked up for me. And alas it was over too soon. The paranormal part of the book could have really worked wonders had it been supported with an interesting cast. However, the mystery and the allure of the surprisingly good premise may keep many readers hooked until the end, waiting for something substantial to happen. The characters apart from Taylor and Sacha are best kept mum about—they were paper-thin and fail to make me feel anything for them.
I’m not too sure about giving the sequel a try…although I will be looking out for it. The best parts of the book, like I mentioned earlier, came at the very end, and if Taylor gets more human (and we get rid of all the cliches) then maybe I’ll pick that one up. But as for this one? Definitely one book you can live without.