Monday, May 27, 2013

The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan

The Beautiful and the Cursed
Good Reads Summary
The Beautiful and the Cursed by Page Morgan

After a bizarre accident, Ingrid Waverly is forced to leave London with her mother and younger sister, Gabby, trading a world full of fancy dresses and society events for the unfamiliar city of Paris.

In Paris there are no grand balls or glittering parties, and, disturbingly, the house Ingrid’s twin brother, Grayson, found for them isn’t a house at all. It’s an abandoned abbey, its roof lined with stone gargoyles that could almost be mistaken for living, breathing creatures.

And Grayson has gone missing.

No one seems to know of his whereabouts but Luc, a devastatingly handsome servant at their new home.

Ingrid is sure her twin isn’t dead—she can feel it deep in her soul—but she knows he’s in grave danger. It will be up to her and Gabby to navigate the twisted path to Grayson, a path that will lead Ingrid on a discovery of dark secrets and otherworldly truths. And she’ll learn that once they are uncovered, they can never again be buried

My Thoughts
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The author sums it up best, “It’s about real living gargoyles … in Paris… in the 1890’s. And they, like, protect humans. Or something.” To be perfectly honest, were you to strip all that down, you’d likely say you’d read a version of this somewhere, some when before.

There’s a girl, you see, and she’s been pigeonholed as fragile and weak, only to have each action/ thought by her run contrary to that. And it’s a family affair too, this being more than you think them to be at first. Both her sister and twin brother differ in some way or other. It’s her sister, Gabby who’s the most remarkable, I felt. As the girl was more in your face, more confident and more active in getting things rolling. The brother’s a whole other mystery though, and it’s on his end that things started feeling much too Tessa and brother all over again for my liking. Must it always be the brother getting into trouble with and the devoted younger sister(s) doing the worrying/saving/thinking? Seems like it to me.

Then the love interests, of which there are many in this one, none of them felt “new” to me. There’s perfect sharp looking distant brooding Luc and bookish but in a hot way Vander… (and check out those names! If those aren’t love interest names, I have no idea what is!)  The thing is there’s loads of romance to go around. Gabby too had her own troubles with the obnoxious (but in hot way) Nolan. To be honest I enjoyed the last pair the most, at least they made sense, with Gabby aware as she was of what she had going for her, and Nolan only too aware of the same.

Though this tries to be more than a YA love story, with Luc and his world… it doesn’t quite succeed. A lot of the tension is brought out by Ingrid and Luc and their ‘should we shouldn’t we’ moments. Then later by Ingrid’s other moments of ‘look at the hot boy with the books!’ As well as by Gabby’s own drama of I hate this ass but actually like him! EXCEPT there are other moments too; the moments where we catch a glimpse of the world that Luc, the Dispossessed, the Alliance and whoever else had been keeping secret. It’s those bits I’d have loved of more.

So, we know parts: how they protect the humans in their charge, and how they follow orders and tow the line… and how some of them would rather not. Then we find out who the bosses are and who the bosses of their bosses are… and it all gets a tad complicated, complications I wouldn’t have minded were it a bit more cleanly laid out. Then throw in the a world of baddies versus their world of good guys (who weren’t behaving like typical good guys either). It’s the little bits I liked… the rules that guide them, the responsibilities they put up with that I would have liked more. That aside, this was fun… and yes, different not all the time mind you. Hell, not even most of the time!) But those glimpses into the underworld as well as the demons? there’s an almost nightmarish quality to them. And I liked that aspect the most.

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