July 30, 2012

Book Review: Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross

At First Sight: Mirabelle was tired of her godmothers Elsa and Bliss always keeping things from her, things directly connected to her past and the fire that killed her parents when she was but a baby. She doesn't want to hurt them but she does need answers, so she hatches a plan to run away some days before her 16th birthday and find some answers. 

Her quest takes her to Beau Rivage, a beautiful seaside town where things aren't exactly what they seem. On her first night in town she meets the brothers Valentine. The first one, Blue, is an obnoxious teenager dead-set on driving Mira away by whatever means necessary. Then she meets Felix, who's in his early twenties and seems to run Dream, the casino the Valentines own. 

Felix is the one who decides to help her find answers, and Mira is soon enchanted by him. But at the same time he can't seem to avoid Blue, who keeps sucking her into his world and having her hang out with his friends. There is Viv with a morbid fascination with apples, Freddie who seems to have animal magnetism (as small, cute animals seem to follow him everywhere), and many others whose life seems to eerily mirror certain well known fairytales. 

After that, it doesn't take Mira long to find out Beau Rivage's secret: magic is alive and well there, fairies - good and evil - are real, so are curses, and life will always try to make you fullfil your destiny, sucking you in even as you try to run away. 

Second Glance:  Kill Me Softly sounded like it was going to be just my kind of book. I love all things fairy-tale and this promised to be a book where there would be plenty of fairy tales - and in that score it delivered. But I can't say I enjoyed most of it. 

The pace of it was slow, it took me forever to get through the beginning. The prose was taunting, so I wanted to keep reading but after a while it annoyed me. The writing said "something is going to happen soon" over and over, so I kept reading even as I thought it was a pretty cheap shot, the way in taunted, but it was effective. 

For a while I couldn't make sense of what was happening truly, and then, midway through the book, there is this MASSIVE INFO DUMP (MID) and suddenly everything is spelled out. Everything but the nature of Blue's curse - quite conveniently so, I might add. 

What followed was a series of anti-climatic events that nearly caused me to sprain my eyes since I was rolling them so much. There were a lot of things that were just left hanging, there is a Love triangle that is really kind of a square but not really. No one seems to care that Felix, who is at least 21 or 22, is 'dating' Mira who isn't even 16 yet. And Mira, dear Mira, had such Bella Swan moments that I'm having a hard time not putting her into the TSTL category. 

Bottom Line: Kill Me Softly was a book with a lovely concept but a crappy execution. Entire plot points were left hanging, other points weren't even addressed at all, and things get MAGICALLY solved in the end. The one thing this book has going for it is the world building. The MID I mentioned? well, the info it provided was a bout the coolest thing about this story. 

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