Sunday, May 5, 2013

Spellbound (Spellbound #1) by Cara Lynn Schultz

Spellbound by Cara Lynn Schultz
324 pages
Life hasn't been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Connor, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she's irresistibly drawn to— Brendan Salinger, the guy with the rock-star good looks and the richest kid in school, who might just be her very own white knight.
But even when Brendan inexplicably turns cold, Emma can't stop staring. Ever since she laid eyes on him, strange things have been happening. Streetlamps go out wherever she walks, and Emma's been having the oddest dreams: visions of herself in past lives— visions that warn her to stay away from Brendan. Or else. (via Goodreads)

Emma is this girl with a really depressing (if not a tad cliche) past. She's a pretty strong character, despite - or maybe because of - her past. Her twin brother died, her mom died, and she lived with her perennially drunk stepfather until her aunt swept her away into the magical land of New York - where all YA girls should go to meet their love interests (I'm looking at you, Clary from TMI).

As far as main characters of YA fiction go, I'd say that Emma is a fairly well written one. She isn't some annoying Mary Sue whom everyone loves except for the reader. She's clever and doesn't whine too much. I'll admit that as I read her thoughts, there were a few times when I giggled a little. My only issue with her is that as soon as her love interest, Brendan, strolls in, her brain turns to mush. I mean, I get it. There's a gorgeous, wealthy, piece of delicious who wants you. Of course, you're going to go crazy for him, but at least try to think of something else. Even something as silly as the color of the sky. Or how you could die if you're close to him.

Brendan, despite my complaints about Emma's behavior towards him, is totally worthy of swooning for. He's really gorgeous in my head. Really gorgeous. I fell for him quickly. It barely took any effort on his part. He glanced in the direction of Emma a couple of times, and I started foaming at the mouth was a goner immediately.

The plot was pretty predictable. But it was the good kind of predictable, as in you can guess the basic outline, but there's more to the story to it. I really enjoyed the whole reincarnation thing that Schultz had going on. It's been done before, but this was written in a way that I didn't really expect.   Emma's thought process was pretty engaging, which was one of the main points on why I continued, especially in the beginning. There were also some really good moments in here. After I finished the book, I felt it necessary to go back and reread said moments. I want to mention them here, but I'm scared of giving away too many spoilers.

Despite there being a few hitches in character dynamic (especially on the part of the minor characters, because they seemed a little flat), I really enjoyed Spellbound. I finished it in two days but I probably could have finished it faster because whenever I started reading, I found it very hard to put the book back down. Do I recommend it? Why yes, I do.

Rating: 3.5/5

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