Friday, April 1, 2011

Haven by Kristi Cook

Title: Haven
Author: Kristi Cook
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: February 22, 2011
Date Read: March 26 - 28, 2011
Rating: 3/5 stars

One month into her junior year, sixteen-year-old Violet McKenna transfers to the Winterhaven School in New York’s Hudson Valley, inexplicably drawn to the boarding school with high hopes. Leaving Atlanta behind, she’s looking forward to a fresh start--a new school, and new classmates who will not know her deepest, darkest secret, the one she’s tried to hide all her life: strange, foreboding visions of the future.

But Winterhaven has secrets of its own, secrets that run far deeper than Violet’s. Everyone there--every student, every teacher--has psychic abilities, 'gifts and talents,' they like to call them. Once the initial shock of discovery wears off, Violet realizes that the school is a safe haven for people like her. Soon, Violet has a new circle of friends, a new life, and maybe even a boyfriend--Aidan Gray, perhaps the smartest, hottest guy at Winterhaven.

Only there’s more to Aidan than meets the eye--much, much more. And once she learns the horrible truth, there’s no turning back from her destiny. Their destiny. Together, Violet and Aidan must face a common enemy--if only they can do so without destroying each other first

It was better than Twilight, I'll give it that much. Sticking to my promise to not read the back covers of the books I grab at the library, I had no idea that Haven was a paranormal/vampire romance OR that it was first in a series, two things I hate to read. Don't get me wrong, I've read plenty of paranormal fiction that I enjoyed, but most of it turns out cheesy and overdone. I hate reading the first novel in a series unless the entire series is out because by the time the next one comes out, I'll have forgotten the major plot points and I'll have to go back and re-read the first one and blah blah blah. Anyways, on to the review!

From the start I liked the novel, besides the fact that it was *once again* set at a boarding school. I even liked the idea that everyone was there for having a supernatural power. It gave it a nice X-Men feel. I rather liked Violet because she seemed like a normal teenage girl with normal teenage problems. But oh no, it was too good to be true. She went and fell in love with a vampire who doesn't want to be with her because he could suck out her blood and because he's being hunted by another vampire. Never heard that one before, eh? As soon as the vampire element was added Kristi lost me. I'm really not a fan of Twilikes, especially ones with less-than-independent protagonists and highly unrealistic plot lines. Like, as if the entire school wouldn't notice an epic werewolf/vampire battle in the square? And no one gets in trouble? 

That being said, there were a few things I enjoyed. I liked how Kristi tried to make her vampires more original with the scientific explanations, slayers (which we haven't seen that often in YA literature recently), other supernatural powers (rather than just vampires), and sexual aspect of turning someone into a vampire. I really liked how Violet grew a backbone for a few chapters to break up with Aidan and actually got over him rather than just moping about him all day and being the "pathetic heroine". The fact that Violet's fencing training was used to help her train to be a slayer was a nice added touch too. 

Even though I stated before that I hate novels in series that haven't been published, but I'm actually anticipating the sequel. I love how Kristi just spelled out all the unanswered questions as a teaser to what the plot will be in the next book. I'm anxious to read it and see how the characters develop, hopefully in a less melodramatic way. 

Favourite Quote: "Wendy grew up," he said, his voice hard. "And so will you."

Recommended: Evermore (Alyson Noel), Marked (P.C. & Kristin Cast), Wake (Lisa McMann), A Great and Terrible Beauty (Libba Bray)

1 comment:

  1. I had the same sentiments. I really wish Cook did more with the psychic element. Once we knew Aidan was a vampire, the mind tricks all got pushed into the background.

    I like your review set-up! I found you through the DAC review log, and I've never seen a blogger who puts Fave Quote and Recommended Books in the review. Great ideas :D


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