Monday, April 9, 2012

Review: Wicked as They Come

I read a lot. As in, every night of the week (sorry, Mike). I recently finished Wicked as They Come, by Delilah S. Dawson and loved it so much I just had to jump on my Goodreads account this morning before work and write a review. Then I figured, why not put the review up on my blog? Spread the word around about this awesome book. So, without further ado, I present to you my review of WATC.

Have you ever heard of a Bludman? They’re rather like you and me—only more fabulous, immortal, and mostly indestructible. (They’re also very good kissers.) 

Delilah S. Dawson’s darkly tempting debut drops her unsuspecting heroine into a strange faraway land for a romantic adventure that’s part paranormal, part steampunk . . . and completely irresistible. 

When Tish Everett forces open the ruby locket she finds at an estate sale, she has no idea that a deliciously rakish Bludman has cast a spell just for her. She wakes up in a surreal world, where Criminy Stain, the dashing proprietor of a magical traveling circus, curiously awaits. At Criminy’s electric touch, Tish glimpses a tantalizing future, but she also foresees her ultimate doom. Before she can decide whether to risk her fate with the charming daredevil, the locket disappears, and with it, her only chance to return home. Tish and Criminy battle roaring sea monsters and thundering bludmares, vengeful ghosts and crooked Coppers in a treacherous race to recover the necklace from the evil Blud-hating Magistrate. But if they succeed, will Tish forsake her fanged suitor and return to her normal life, or will she take a chance on an unpredictable but dangerous destiny with the Bludman she’s coming to love?

[minor spoilers included]

WOWZA! This is, hands down, one of the best books I have read in a while. It's interesting to read some of the other reviews. People seem to either hate or love Wicked as They Come by Delilah S. Dawson. I am definitely in the love category. Here's why: 

Criminy Stain is fantastic as our charming, sexy, arrogant, brooding, sexy, and witty hero. Did I mention sexy? From the first moment he is introduced to the last, I drooled over loved him. We saw the world of Sang come alive through his eyes. And what a world it was.  

Sang is a magical place that exists parallel to our own. In Sang there are two types of people: Bluds (think vampires with little tweaks here and there) and Pinkies (humans). Once upon a time everyone was happy and there was a perfect balance between Bluds and Pinkies. Then something happened (a war? a famine? I didn't really catch it in the reading) and all of the wildlife became Bluds (bludbunnies, bludstags, bludsquirrels, etc. etc.) which sent the Pinkies packing into big cities with big walls. Bluds were discriminated against, turned mostly into servants or factory workers, and regulated by the Coppers (Pinkie police force). 

I found Sang to be a highly unique and original place. One I wouldn't mind living in myself (as long as it wasn't in a stinky city). The cast of characters Dawson introduced us to throughout WATC was fascinating. I loved (or loved to hate) them all. It is a talented writer that with just a few sentences can make you feel genuine emotions about a character. 

You may have noticed I have yet to say anything about the main character... And that would be because while I enjoyed the first person narrative as told by one Letitia (Tish) Everett, she wasn't my favorite character. Maybe it was the name. Maybe it was because she was so willing (after the few three chapters or so) to believe and accept everything around her. Maybe it was because even though she was supposed to be twenty five (the same age as me!) she acts more like (and makes decisions like) an eighteen year old. Or maybe it was because she got to sleep with Criminy and I didn't. Who knows? Whatever the reason, I didn't LOVE Tish, but I did like her. Most of the time. 

A few other things, while small, kept this from being a 5 star book for me. 

- A good portion of the book is devoted to Tish and Criminy searching for her locket. Why, for all that is holy, would Criminy risk Tish's safety and bring her with him? Why not just bring another Blud and tuck her away to hide out? Or is it that he thought she would only be safe with him(dead ghosts, nearly drowning, sea monsters, and crazy ass bludwomen not withstanding)? 

- The Bluds were obviously stronger than the Pinkies. Why did they allow themselves to be enslaved? The only military force I saw was the Coppers, and they weren't all that tough (or plentiful). If anything, it should have been the other way around: Bluds ruling over Pinkies. 

- Letitia? Really? 

Overall, this book was a FANTASTIC read and I can't wait for the second Blud novel to come out. I think it will be better, knowing what to expect going in. I know initially when I started WATC I was expecting something closer to YA, and was thrown for a bit of a loop when I figured out Tish was actuallyeighteen twenty-five. All in all, a job well done and book well worth the two days it took me to read it cover to cover.

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