Tuesday, 31 May 2011
Review: Darkness Becomes Her by Kelly Keaton
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Released: June 9th, 2011
Grade rating: B/B+
Ari can't help feeling lost and alone. With her teal coloured eyes and freakish silver hair that can't be changed or destroyed, she has always stood out. And after growing up in foster care, she longs for some understanding of where she came from and who she is. When her search for answers uncovers just one message with the word 'RUN' from her long dead mother, Ari can sense that someone, or something, is getting closer than they should. But it's impossible to protect herself when she doesn't know who or what she's running from, or why she is being pursued.
Kelly Keaton's YA debut novel is exciting and intriguing, and is a great addition to the paranormal genre. It's set in a future New Orleans left devastated after hurricanes and now called New 2. It's home to freaky people, many of which leading lady Ari meets, including witches, vampires and shifters. Ari is none of these, she's something else entirely: something cool and unusual.
Ari's heritage is often hinted at but isn't revealed until much later in the book. I liked that about it, as I was always guessing as to what was going on. It's like a mini mystery waiting to be unraveled, but it doesn't hinder the story in any way. It's fast-paced and very character driven, with little room for unnecessary filler.
Everything happens in the space of a few days which, if I'm honest, I think is a bit unbelievable even for me. Everything falls into place for Ari far too quickly: she meets the right people, gets to New 2, falls for Sebastian and confronts her destiny all in less than a week. I wish the timeframe was longer, though by the time I got to the end I'd forgotten how much time was supposed to have passed. Obviously I was too wrapped up in the story to care!
My favourite character by far is Violet, a little girl with sharp teeth and a pet alligator called Pascal. She's ace, and I really really hope she has a big part in the next book. She immediately hits it off with Ari, leading me to think we might see more of these two as a team in future instalments. I can see Ari being like a big sister figure for Violet which I'm sure would be new to both of them.
Darkness Becomes Her isn't without its faults, but I still enjoyed it regardless. It brings something different to the YA table and is very much rooted in myths and legends. It's a promising start to what I hope will be a brilliant series!