by Gwenda Bond
Genre: Romance, Paranormal
Format: E-book ARC, 416 pages
Expected publication: September 4th 2012 by Strange Chemistry
On Roanoke Island, the legend of the 114 people who mysteriously vanished from the Lost Colony hundreds of years ago is just an outdoor drama for the tourists, a story people tell. But when the island faces the sudden disappearance of 114 people now, an unlikely pair of 17-year-olds may be the only hope of bringing them back.
Miranda, a misfit girl from the island’s most infamous family, and Phillips, an exiled teen criminal who hears the voices of the dead, must dodge everyone from federal agents to long-dead alchemists as they work to uncover the secrets of the new Lost Colony. The one thing they can’t dodge is each other.
Blackwood was a novel full of good ideas. The story was interesting and different, the characters were likable and sweet, but somewhere along the line this book misses the mark.
I had an issue with the writing style. There are a lot of thoughts in italic that appear in the middle of a sentence, or just in an inappropriate place. Sometimes the italics are fully formed thoughts that matter to the story, but sometimes it is something simple like ‘sigh’ which seemed a little pointless and unnecessary. It disrupted the flow of the story for me and is something I expect to see in fan fiction not published work.
There were a lot of times where I wasn’t exactly sure what was going on, especially towards the end. Everything seemed a little unexplained or muddled and I struggled to keep up. What didn’t help is that the plot took a dive into the utterly bizarre and from there it never quite recovered. I also found some of it more than a little uncomfortable.
I would have loved to see these characters in a different story, (maybe a story where the word ‘Frak’ is not used so often) a romance about the loner girl and the bad-boy because those were the parts of the story I thoughts really had potential and heart.
Blackwood is a quick read and a new and interesting take on the paranormal/YA genre. It could have been a tense and spooky horror story, but instead it goes too far and enters a realm of, at times, ridiculousness.
1 out of 5 stars