Thursday, 21 April 2011

Review: 666 Park Avenue by Gabriella Pierce

What if your mother-in-law turned out to be an evil, cold-blooded witch . . . literally?
Ever since fabulously wealthy Malcolm Doran walked into her life and swept her off her feet, fledgling architect Jane Boyle has been living a fairy tale. When he proposes with a stunning diamond to seal the deal, Jane can't believe her incredible luck and decides to leave her Paris-based job to make a new start with Malcolm in New York.
But when Malcolm introduces Jane to the esteemed Doran clan, one of Manhattan's most feared and revered families, Jane's fairy tale takes a darker turn. Soon everything she thought she knew about the world—and herself—is upended. Now Jane must struggle with newfound magical abilities and the threat of those who will stop at nothing to get them.

I was looking for a new chick lit to read – I happened to be stuck in the fantasy section at the time – when this cover caught my eye. The blurb looked good and the first page engaged me and gave me a chuckle. All in all a promising trip to the bookshop. However, the book ended up not being as good as I’d anticipated. However, despite some gripes, it did redeem itself, but I’m going to plough through the negative to get to the good stuff.

I probably would have enjoyed this book more if one of the ‘big reveals’ wasn’t revealed in the blurb. It meant that I spent the first half of the book getting incredibly bored with Jane as she continued to miss the obvious clues pointing out the nature of her soon to be in-laws. As it was the first half wasn’t so much a supernatural thrill ride, it was more of a moan fest with a bit of sex thrown in.

I’m quite happy with sex in books, but I have to admit to being a little thrown at the random (mildly explicit) sex scenes thrown in. For chick lit, there was no romance. It was pure animal attraction, which just made the whole ‘we’re so desperately in love’ thing that Jane and Malcolm were supposed to be feel rather fake.

In fact I really disliked Malcolm, right from the start where we’re supposed to like him. This isn’t a particularly great start if the hero seems like a bit of a plonker (and quickly seems to establish himself as one once they’re in New York.) as I felt I should be swooning over him at least a little?

I also struggled with how Jane got her powers. Normal girl, suddenly poof she sees some things and she knows she’s a witch. It just felt sudden and even though I was expecting it, a bit random and thrown in there. I just would have liked to have a bit more of a transition, a bit more explanation as to how Jane suddenly knows.

On a personal note whilst I love knowing about the clothes characters are wearing, every now and again it felt a little bit like I was choking on all the details. Some things just felt a bit unnecessary.

Ok onto the good stuff. After the big reveal everything started to pick up. Malcolm ran off, which I was immensely happy about. Jane started to explore her powers – she got friends, she sort of re-discovered her back bone. Excellent. The twists got twistier, everything got darker and a lot scarier, and characters that had seemed flat started to get more interesting.

I like Harris, I would like more of him please – thanks.
I also like that Jane stopped moping and found herself some friends, and got pro-active and learned how to use her powers, and by the end, actually got a little bit kick ass.
I also liked the final few OMG moments that came hurtling out in the last few pages. All in all, I started liking the book. I got to the point that I had expected to be all the way through, where I was sniggering and gasping and really involved with the story.

It’s just a shame that it took so long to reach that point.

The end wasn’t at all what I’d expected – I’d expected more of a happy ending, and particularly as I’d started enjoying the book so late, I really wanted more. So after a bit of searching, I’ve found that the sequel and Jane’s journey continues in “The Dark Glamour” out on August 30th 2011.

And hopefully, the next one will continue on the high that “666 park Avenue” finished on, because Pierce’s writing is very good once she got going, and I’m looking forward to seeing where she goes next.
Read the book? What were you thoughts? I’d love to hear what other people made of the book – post in the comments below.

1 comment:

  1. I found 666 Park Avenue refreshingly different from the other paranormal romances I've read recently. I liked the modern, chick-lit feel a lot. The sequel is not coming out until August. I feel like there were so many loose threads in this book, it's too bad it's not released sooner.