Lena Duchannes is unlike anyone the small Southern town of Gatlin has ever seen, and she’s struggling to conceal her power and a curse that has haunted her family for generations. But even within the overgrown gardens, murky swamps, and crumbling graveyards of the forgotten South, a secret cannot stay hidden forever.
Ethan Wate, who has been counting the months until he can escape from Gatlin, is haunted by dreams of a beautiful girl he has never met. When Lena moves into the town’s oldest and most infamous plantation, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her and determined to uncover the connection between them.
In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything.
My first impression of Beautiful Creatures by Garcia and Stohl was that it was refreshing to hear a paranormal romance from a guy’s perspective. I don’t think I’ve ever read one before so I was quickly captivated.
However, I do think that the fact that the story is from Ethan’s perspective has its downside. For one, I couldn’t get into the romance as much as I hoped. I didn’t feel the passion between the characters. While I thought that Lena and Ethan made a great match, I could not feel the chemistry between them. In comparison to Grace and Sam from Linger and Nora and Patch in Hush, Hush, Beautiful Creatures fails to compare.
What if the book had been set from Lena’s perspective? Would we have gained more insight as a reader? It’s hard to say. I think her connection with Ethan enabled us to get a sense at a reader on this difficult time for her. It would have been nice to see things in her perspective because she is the Caster after all. I think it would have been better if the book was written in alternating perspectives, but that’s just me.
Speaking of alternating perspectives, it makes me wonder how the book could have been written by two different authors… It’s a question I will have to ask if I ever get to interview/meet/etc Garcia or Stohl.
I loved that history played a huge role in this book. As a lover of historical fiction, Beautiful Creatures satisfied my appetite for an adventure of the past. It was delightful to read about the mystery set in the Civil War even if it was only for a couple of chapters. Furthermore, as a Latin student, I was really pleased to see Latin in the book that I can understand! It’s always to a book’s advantage whenever I read Latin.
The book does have its downsides, but I still enjoyed it very much. I love the theme of Light vs Dark, I guess because it reminds me of Harry Potter. From a paranormal standpoint, I wish the book explored the world of Casters more. I think there was so much that we could have learned from Lena’s world, but couldn’t because it was told from Ethan’s perspective. We are learning as much as he is. At this point, while his knowledge is substantial, I think there are still a lot of holes in it.
Bottom line: is it worth the read? Yes. It’s not my new favorite book but I enjoyed it a great deal. I can’t quite say if it’s worth all the hype, but I will continue on reading the series.