Friday, November 23, 2012

Book Review: Unleashed

The final book (well, that I got) from the Enchanted Inkpot giveaway, this review is so much later partially because I got the book later (later enough that I had to go back and check since otherwise I had no explanation why I suddenly had a book in my mailbox) and then over this summer I checked out so many books that I didn't have time to read the stuff I already owned and get these other books returned on time. Also, this is a book about werewolves, I have read a number of stories involving werewolves and have concluded that they're not my favorite supernatural creature to base an entire book around. But that's only enough to make me delay reading a book, not reject it entirely, and here I am better late than never!

Unleashed by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Summary: Katelyn is moving to the charming backwood town of Wolf Spring Arkansas after the death of her mother and finds that while her grandfather isn't so bad the town and the surrounding area are a bit stranger than she expected. Everything seems fine and normal by daylight but at night her grandfather becomes tight lipped and there are dangerous things going on behind the scenes, some that she might get mixed up in if she's not careful. 

The Good: I expected Katelyn to be an annoying lead and for her grandfather to be a stereotype, I was (happily) wrong on both accounts and rather liked the growing relationship between the two of them. I suspect that there is more to her grandfather than this book touched on but even without that he was fleshed out fairly well here. Likewise, I felt like Trick and Cordelia (Katelyn's two closest new friends) also got more fleshed out than I expected, although all of this is balanced out by some rather flat side characters....

The Bad: Right, this is a story about werewolves, the promotional material mentions it and the title of the book even is a reference to it. I know that in a series you'll pace things a bit more slowly than you would in a stand-alone story but this book simply took too long to get to that part of it. As I've said before, there is a delicate line an author has to walk when they know that their audience will have figured out what is going on but their characters won't have, and thankfully Katelyn does realize that something is off almost as soon as she moves in, but it still takes forever. I also find it hard to believe that all of the wolf-related stuff in the setting is (as of this installment anyway) pure coincidence but that might be touched upon in a later book. Which leads me to my biggest problem here, everything feels too unresolved, even for the first book in what I think is a trilogy. There were things that appeared strange to me as a reader that weren't even touched on in this book and that really frustrated me, again it's about knowing how a reader is going to react to a story and dealing with that in order to keep them engaged.

So, not a bad book but not a series I'll continue reading, probably because it is just werewolves which bores me (my issue with stories with just one kind of supernatural being/power is worthy of a post all of it's own, if anyone wants me to I'll put one up on tumblr and just link it here). I give this book three out of five stars and have donated it to my local library in the hopes that someone else will enjoy it more. So I guess now that I'm done with all the Inky books I can say that Mistwood was by far my favorite story and that the others were alright, although some were a bit too young for my taste and others just weren't in genres that I like. Oh well, at least this was a great excuse to read some new things!

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