Hello everyone, how are you? Today I’m coming back with a really unique book tag, created by CW @ READ, THINK, PONDER! If you don’t know her and her amazing blog, don’t waste any more time, and click on her blog name to check it out.
The Nostalgic Book Review is all about remembering those books that left a mark in our readers lives… and sometimes, not that well! For this tag, I will review a book entirely from memory, that means no checking Goodreads, no Google, no book, no anything, simply my mind! To do so, this post will be divided in 3 parts: the summary, the thoughts, and the epilogue. To check out the full rules of this tag, please head to CW’s blog! 🙂
This is where I tell you a little bit about the book I chose, and try to do my best to give out a synopsis of it, from memory!
Beautiful Creatures, Kami Garcia, Margaret Stohl
Published December 1st 2009 by Little, Brown and Company
She’s in her dreams, but he doesn’t know her yet. Yet he can’t save her. That’s Ethan’s daily, or mostly like, nightly routine these days. It’s the end of the summer, and the 17 years-old high-schooler is sleep deprived, haunted by those nightmares. Both his parents died in a car accident, so he lives with his aunt Alma, in a small town in the south of the US.
Back to school is right around the corner and, when it finally is here, so is Ethan’s dream girl. He doesn’t know who she is, and why she’s acting so strange around everyone…Her name is Lena, and she doesn’t look like any other girl he’s seen before, but he can’t say why. And it’s driving him kind of crazy.
Intrigued, he tries to talk to her, and, quickly, learn to know some sides of her. But never the whole picture. Lena isn’t an ordinary girl. She lives in a mansion, with a weird wizard-like uncle. Classroom windows breaks when she’s around, and strange things happen. Lena isn’t an ordinary girl, at all. She’s a Caster : she’s from a powerful wizard family. And 17 is the age when she’ll get to choose, whether she needs to serve for good, or for bad.
This is where I share my thoughts about this book: what were my feelings back then, when I first read it? Now, what would be different? Did this book had an impact on my reader’s life?
THEN: What I most clearly remember about this story, is that I absolutely LOVED it, at the time I read it. What first caught my eye in this synopsis is the idea of the dream. I absolutely fell in love with this. I’ve been fascinated about dreams for a while, at that time, and reading a story with this, was simply, great. I think I was sort of disappointed, that the dream didn’t take a much bigger place in this story. Beautiful Creatures was fast-paced and intriguing at best.
“Mortals. I envy you. You think you can change things. Stop the universe. Undo what was done long before you came along. You are such beautiful creatures.”
I remember that Ethan is definitely the character I enjoyed the most in this story. Honest, sweet, sometimes a little sarcastic like every teenager, he was endearing at best, and I loved following his story, told from his perspective. I had a hard time with Lena’s character, at first. I found her annoying and couldn’t quite figure her out, what she wanted, and why she was acting this way. Even after figuring out the mystery behind her story, I think I was still a little bit annoyed by her. Ethan seemed like such a sweet guy to me, and I thought he deserved better than to be engulfed in all this drama.
Exploring the themes of growing up and finding out who you are, and what you want to be, clearly takes a central place in this story. With Lena’s struggle to choose a side, Ethan’s struggle to find out which side he wants to stand on, and if he can take the risk to stay with Lena, we really get a whole picture of these themes in this story. Filled with mystery and action, this story kept me on reading for a while, and I even chose to pick up the next book in the series, Beautiful Darkness.
NOW: I read this book a while ago, so I think reading it again would obviously change my opinion on this a little bit. Maybe I sugarcoated it a little bit, or maybe not enough, who knows? I think I would definitely think more about the main themes and the messages more, because book blogging really made me think more about books and everything they have to share with us between the lines.
At the time, this book really made a difference in my life. I remember loving this story and carrying it in my heart for a while, for the characters, the fast-pacing and the magical side of it I was loving. I think this was probably one of my first paranormal romances.
So, it’s that fun time where I look up the synopsis and important plot points, and see what I got wrong and right!
“Dig deep. Find your way to your soul.”
Well, I think I got most of the synopsis right, yay, me, and my memory ahah! However, I did forgot the main characters’ last name : Ethan Wate and Lena Duchannes, and I got their age wrong, since they are not even 16 years-old yet. I did get Ethan’s aunt name wrong : it’s Amma, not Alma and…she’s not even her aunt, she’s her grandmother! Some of the plot is a little rusty in my mind. Lena doesn’t get to choose her side, she’s cursed. On her sixteen’s birthday, she will be called and her fate will be decided for her.
“Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future. Just ask Ray Bradbury.”
I did completely leave out an interesting point I would have talked about, if the book was fresh in my mind: Beautiful Creatures holds a ton of references to the Civil War, and the whole American Culture takes a big place in this story, which probably makes it more vivid and interesting to read about.
After reading a few reviews, some of the story is starting to come back. Forbidden love is a big part of it, and many people are saying the pace isn’t as fast as I thought, but, if I thought that, maybe I was hooked 🙂
If I re-read this book, I think I would still enjoy it. Maybe not as much as I did when I first picked it up, but this book played a big part in my reading life, and I would most certainly enjoy reading it once again. I’m not that into magical stories anymore, but that wouldn’t stop me from changing my habits once in a while and getting right back into it.
This tag was so much fun, and harder than it seems to do! I would love to see those fellow bloggers go down memory lane, and see which books they can talk about from memory 🙂