Wednesday, 12 January 2011
Review: The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
Title: The Dark Divine
Series: Dark Divine
Author: Bree Despain
Publication Date: 5 July 2010
Synopsis: From Amazon
A prodigal son. A dangerous love. Haunted yearning...Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared and her brother Jude came home covered in his own blood. Now that Daniel's returned, Grace must choose between her growing attraction to him and her loyalty to her brother. As Grace gets closer to Daniel, she learns the truth about that mysterious night and how to save the ones she loves, but it might cost her the one thing she cherishes most: her soul.
Firstly I would like to say how well the title works on multi-levels when you know the story-line [ ; D ] I am such a tease.
I think for a lot of people this is a marmite book - you either love it or hate it - for me it is Love with a capital L.
Written in first person narrative from Lucy's perspective. At 16, the daughter of the local Pastor you can imagine that she is quite moralistic. To all outward appearances they are a close knit family; Lucy is especially close to her older brother, Jude, both in age and emotionally. I have to say that my opinion of Lucy at the start of the book was that she was condescending and judgemental. Not very like-able characteristics I am sure you will agree.
As I have already stated the Divine family's interactions/relationship revolve around how they appear to the community. The main focus is keeping up appearances no matter the circumstances; especially applicable to the mother. I did find this aspect of the family annoying but can see the reasoning behind it; IE being a Pastor's family you have to be perceived as squeaky clean. The underlying theme throughout was one of how easily appearances can be deceiving; I constantly questioned who was 'good' and who was the 'evil' characters in the book. The explanation given to the origins of the surnames used was insightful, adding deeper meaning to the plot.
My love of bad boys trying to be good went through the roof in the form of Daniel *swoon*. The information woven in regarding his childhood was heart-wrenching.
The religious interpretation of the werewolf mythology, gave the whole idea of werewolves a new outlook. Without giving away any spoilers I am really interested to see this aspect of the plot developed in the next book. I will say I had 'issues' with the whole 'saving' Daniel aspect of the story - I don't think I fully understand it even now.
There were some inspired plot twists (although I did guess the main one) the way in which the twists were revealed was astounding. The tension was palpable from the pages, the plot unfolded like an accordion. Clever weaving of historical events into the narrative reinforced the theme of appearances being deceptive - 'don't judge a book by its cover' lol.
Lucy's character change from the start of the book to the end was lovely to follow. Her 'eyes are opened' so to speak as she discovers the truth about certain people. She accepts that she has judged them incorrectly and acknowledges the faults within her own family.
A lovely fresh take on the werewolf myth that I am keen to follow. I cannot wait for the next installment. If anyone wants to send me an advance copy I won't say NO [ ; D ]