Thursday, April 3, 2014

Half Bad (Half Life, #1)

Green, S. (2014). Half Bad. NY: Viking Press Juvenile.
Young Adult / Fantasy / Paranormal

I gave this 4 out of 5 stars.

CHECK OUT THIS TRAILER from Entertainment Weekly's Shelf Life:

HALF BAD was more than half good, and I really enjoyed it. For one, I was happy to have a male main character for a change and secondly, there was no sappy love triangle. (Not saying there isn't a love triangle, or one coming, but it is definitely not standard!)

The idea of the modern world having witches living within it isn't a novel premise, but how it was handled was well done and had some fairly unique ideas. The world is a dark, cruel, and violent one, and Green does an excellent job with describing every painful moment -- with a smattering of happiness to offset the darkness.

Poor Nathan, our main character, has to deal with hatred and discrimination and neglect in both the witch and real worlds. The messages were loud and clear that this is something humanity clearly needs to continue to work on remedying.

There were plenty of twists and turns, and the ending hints at plenty more to come in the intended books two and three of the series. As always, I prefer a stand-alone story and I think this could have been one with some clever editing; however, the ending left readers with questions interesting enough that we'll come back for more.

The publisher recommends it for ages 12 and up, but I would err on the side of caution and maybe push it for a little older than that, based on the violence factor. It could be upsetting and/or even cause nightmares because the scenes are so descriptive.

Thank you to the publisher, Viking/Penguin, and NetGalley for providing me this ARC in exchange for a fair review. Hopefully the final eBook will be easier to read than the one I was given, which had all kinds of formatting issues. Better yet -- just opt for the hard cover edition when it comes out! Definitely worth purchasing.

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