Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Radiance by Alyson Noel
Author: Alyson Noel
Release Date: August 31st, 2010
Source: Review copy received from publisher
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Riley Bloom left her sister, Ever, in the world of the living and crossed the bridge into the afterlife—a place called Here, where time is always Now. Riley and her dog, Buttercup, have been reunited with her parents and are just settling into a nice, relaxing death when she's summoned before The Council. They let her in on a secret—the afterlife isn't just an eternity of leisure; Riley has to work. She's been assigned a job, Soul Catcher, and a teacher, Bodhi, a curious boy she can't quite figure out.
Riley, Bodhi, and Buttercup return to earth for her first assignment, a Radiant Boy who's been haunting a castle in England for centuries. Many Soul Catchers have tried to get him to cross the bridge and failed. But he's never met Riley...
My favorite character in the two Immortals books that I've read was Riley, so I was happy when I heard about the spin off. It's a Middle Grade book, but I enjoyed it. You don't have to read the Immortals series to understand this, though I would recommend it.
Riley is a really spunky girl. She doesn't just do what she's told, she questions, and makes her own decisions. I like that about her. She's also very smart. The supporting characters didn't really have much depth, which was unfortunate. I think that at least one of the characters will be more fully developed in the next books.
It's a really short book, as in it took me less than two hours to finish it. I kind of thought that it might have been a little too short. But that might just be because I'm used to reading longer YA books.
Something that I didn't like about this book is that I thought that some of the words and descriptions used didn't fit in with the Middle Grade aspect. I don't think that MG books should be dumbed down, but there was some vocabulary that I thought was maybe a bit too advanced for everything being from Riley's point of view. I mean, I don't even describe things like that.
Basically, it was a really cute MG book, and I enjoyed knowing what happened to Riley after she crossed over the bridge. I wish that the supporting characters had been a bit more developed, and that the vocabulary was maybe more age appropriate.
Overall: 43/50 B
Cover/Title Comments: I'm not really sure what the title has to do with anything, but I love the cover. It really captures the story.