Monday, 5 January 2015

Review: Unlovely by Celeste Conway

Accidents happen. But they happen more often when the beautiful ballet dancers return each summer to the island. When he hears the ruthless way that the loveliest dancer talks about boys getting what they deserve when they break girls' hearts, Harley, home for the summer after his first year of college, wonders if he's losing his mind. He knows for sure that he's losing his heart to this girl...But then, strange incidents start happening all over the island and Harley is caught between desire and fear: could he also be in danger of losing his life?

Hardcover, 256 pages
Expected publication: January 2nd 2015 by Merit Press

Terri's Thoughts

I received a copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.  It has just recently been released.

I will start out by saying that there are many YA novels that seem to transcend age limitations while there are others that do not.  This story seems to fall in the latter category and may influence my perception of this story.  In my opinion it simply does not appeal to the older (but not too old) audience.

There was so much potential with this story.  A boy returns home from his first year of college to find that everyone has moved on in his absence including his ex-girlfriend.  He then falls for the too good to be true summer girl.  Add to that she attend the creepy ballet school where local rumour has it that the girls are all crazy and suspicious accidents & deaths have occurred over the years.  Intrigued yet?  I was.  There are unlimited plot directions the story could take from here yet it took none of them.

The biggest letdown for me were the characters.  There really seemed to be no emotional connection amongst any of them.  I saw no chemistry between Harley and his ex or Harley and Cassandra.  Both females seemed weird, whiny and immature.  I am not sure if it was how they were described or how they spoke but they did not win me over.  The same for Harley.  He seemed to be attracted to whoever was in the room instead of trying to figure out how he was really feeling. 

The ending (no spoiler's here) just seemed to occur too quickly and did not make a whole lot of sense.  There should have been more of a climax and the aftermath seemed glossed over also.  This could have been such a creepy yet good ending to the story and instead I was left wanting for more.

At the end of the day I think this story could have some appeal for a younger teen audience.  They may be more forgiving for the lack of depth and character development where I wanted more.  They would be the ones that would enjoy the creepy factor that just doesn't become creepy enough.

About the Author     

Celeste Conway is a published author of children's books and young adult books. Published credits of Celeste Conway include The Melting Season, Where Is Papa Now?, The Goodbye Time, and When You Open Your Eyes.

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