Wednesday, April 24, 2013
Review: Spellcaster by Claudia Gray
When Nadia’s family moves to Captive’s Sound, she instantly realizes there’s more to it than meets the eye. Descended from witches, Nadia senses a dark and powerful magic at work in her new town.
Mateo has lived in Captive’s Sound his entire life, trying to dodge the local legend that his family is cursed - and that curse will cause him to believe he’s seeing the future … until it drives him mad. When the strange dreams Mateo has been having of rescuing a beautiful girl—Nadia—from a car accident come true, he knows he’s doomed.
Despite the forces pulling them apart, Nadia and Mateo must work together to break the chains of his family’s terrible curse, and to prevent a disaster that threatens the lives of everyone around them. Shimmering with magic and mystery, New York Times bestselling author Claudia Gray’s new novel is sure to draw fans of the Hex Hall and Caster Chronicles series, and fans of the hit CW TV show The Secret Circle. ~ Goodreads
There were quite a few things I enjoyed about Spellcaster. The witchcraft and sorcery were interesting and explained really well. It had me very curious as to what everything was leading up to.
I enjoyed how Nadia had firmly held beliefs about magic, only to learn things weren't as she was told, placing her in grave danger unless she could harness her powers quickly.
Mateo is a good, solid, stand up guy. He's been living with a family curse and sees no way out. His visions of Nadia's death play over and over in his head but he's unsure if being near her or staying away is the right thing to do.
The villain (I won't say who and spoil that for you) was pretty darn creepy and a real threat to everyone.
Despite all these things, Spellcaster still fell a little flat for me. I just wasn't drawn in to the story. I felt like I've read it many times before.There is absolutely nothing wrong with that but I had a sense of deja vu while reading. There were red herrings that were seemingly obvious, yet the characters didn't pick up on anything. I'm not sure if that was an intentional heads up to the reader but I got irritated at Mateo and Nadia for not piecing things together sooner.
There were also several POV's in addition to Nadia and Mateo’s that didn't always seem necessary.
The story is wrapped up nicely for this installment with plenty of possible paths to take in book #2 - Steadfast, but I'm not sure we got anywhere with the plot development in Spellcaster. I felt like it ended almost where it started.
Final thoughts: Great premise. The magic and Nadia's spellcasting was written vividly and filled with emotion. Unfortunately, the rest of the story and characters fell flat for me. Everyone is quite likable. The romance is sweet and the villain is evil but it just didn't wow me. It also reminded me a bit of The Secret Circle TV series. (& as I wrote this post and copied the summary – I see that indeed this book is compared to The Secret Circle television show)
Author: Website | Twitter | Goodreads
Source: From the publisher for my honest review
Buy the book! Spellcaster