Dangerous Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl (book review).

DangerousCreatures  Welcome to a new series written by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. At the current time, I don’t think it’s known how many books will be in this series, but the previous series had four books in it, so I’m thinking that’s a good figure to go with. Surprisingly, this series is called the ‘Dangerous Creatures’ series, which follows on from the previous series called the ‘Beautiful Creatures’ series. To be fair, this series actually started with book 0.5 ‘Dangerous Dream’ and you will want to read this or some of Ridley’s motivation is not going to make sense to you. I think you would have to read the first series first as there are some storylines that do follow on from the first series, trust me this will be no hardship. The two series together are often called ‘The Caster Chronicles’ as well.


This time, we’re following Ridley and Link, introduced to us in the previous series although they were slightly side-lined. The fact that these are the two main characters brought from the previous series into this new series will be a delight for most readers as I think secretly a lot of readers prefer Ridley and Link to Lena and Ethan *gasp*, myself included. There are a bunch of new characters along with these two old familiars, we get to meet a Darkborn, an illusionist and a necromancer. We also get reintroduced to someone Ridley and Link thought they had seen the back of at the end of the last series!

Essentially, Ridley has unfinished business from ‘Dangerous Dream’, which means that she and Link have to travel to New York. Link becomes the drummer in a band as part of the unfinished business, but things start to go very badly wrong with the band, as in Dark Caster wrong. Ridley and then Link discover that Link has a high price on his head, a price that can only be paid one way, with his death. Throughout this, we also follow Lennox Gates who just happens to be a Caster with the ability to see the future deaths of others. However, he doesn’t see Link’s death, only Ridley’s. This is a fast-paced story with plenty of action and not a little bit of teen-age angst and misunderstanding as can be expected from a Garcia & Stohl novel.

I really enjoyed listening in to Ridley and also Link as we passed from one character to the other through the book. Ridley, in particular, seems to be really battling with her Dark side as she seems to be able to see more and more clearly the right thing to do. Watching her try to battle between doing what her Dark side wants and what she knows she should be doing to make sure her friends don’t get hurt is interesting. You tend to think that if someone is a bad egg, such as Ridley due to her turning Dark on her 16th birthday, that they are bad through and through. Turns out this might not be entirely true, at least not all the time. I also really enjoyed reading the little flashbacks we get into Ridley and her childhood. It really shows how she slowly became a Siren and a Dark Caster.

Link has to be one of the most endearing and hilarious characters in YA fiction at the moment, you really just want to look after him and make sure he doesn’t do anything too stupid. And man alive, Link or rather Garcia & Stohl can come up with some hilarious band names, and also song lyrics. Bless him but he certainly misses being able to eat meat, especially chicken wings!

I found one thing in particular very annoying in this book. I’m not sure if it was just in my copy or if it’s in the properly printed version but at the beginning of every chapter was a “ mark. This was regardless of whether the first line was a description or a line of speech. I found this to be really annoying because I would start the sentence thinking it was someone talking but it turned out to be a description.

One thing that I really have to warn all potential readers about is the ending. This is not a spoiler, it is just a heads-up that this book ends on a very abrupt and unexpected cliff-hanger. This is not the type of cliff-hanger you can just think to yourself, oh, I wonder what happened there, no this one actually made me yell ‘NOOOOO!!!’ In case you’re the type of reader who does not enjoy this kind of cliff-hanger I would either not finish the book until the next one comes out or simply wait for the next in the series before starting this one.

Sarah Bruch

May 2014

follow me @shelbycat

(pub: Penguin. 327 page paperback. Price: £ 7.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-0-14135-410-1)

check out website: www.penguin.co.uk

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