Wednesday 6 July 2011

Review: Dark Heart Rising by Lee Monroe

Dark Heart RisingDark Heart Rising by Lee Monroe

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Sequel to Dark Heart Forever

This book follows Jane again in her obsession with her green-eyed werewolf boy Luca, in a story filled with werewolves, vampires, angels and a crossing into a parallel world called Nissilum. It also comes complete with a love triangle, plenty of action, a mystery, heartbreak, magic, betrayals and political intrigue. Should be the perfect book for me right?

Why just 2 stars? I think this book was sent to straight to publication without being edited. Aside from the numerous glaringly obvious spelling and grammatical mistakes, the continuity in this book is awful. For instance, in one chapter Raphael notices Jane wandering into the palace kitchens at a party and thinks that she is up to something, but then Jane is off somewhere else, then chats to Raphael, and only very much later does she wander through the kitchen looking for Soren. Another time, Jane and Vanya are barricaded inside the house because Lowe is violently protesting outside, but then in the very next chapter Lowe is at home with Luca having a nice cosy chat. IT DOESN'T MAKE ANY SENSE!! I could almost forgive these kinds of mistakes in the first few chapters where Jane first meets Soren and the narrative leaps about through time without explaining anything- fair enough, we are hurrying through their meeting to just get to the meat of the story and are allowed to just assume that some conversation took place. Jane is going to Paris. Jane is in Paris. Jane meets Soren and he asks her if she wants to go get a coffee. She says yes. It is suddenly the next morning and Soren is ringing her up. Jane is back home in England again. WHERE WERE THE INTERACTIONS IN THE MIDDLE?

Another thing I noticed- sometimes it is said that Soren's parents were murdered when he is 6 years old, and then later on, someone says that they died when he was ten. (WHICH IS IT?) I tried to quickly find the quotes to back this up (and haven't yet), but I did find the first time Soren tells his own story and listen to how confusing this is-

"There once was a good boy. A boy born into a hard-working law-abiding family, who raised him to be good-mannered, considerate and honest... The boy lived happily until he was ten years old when something happened to destroy everything he believed in...
On his sixth birthday, a man came to the door..." (p172)


And finally- the shifting perspective. Most of the chapters are told in the first person from Jane's point of view- it is Jane herself telling the story. But some of the chapters also focus on either Luca or Raphael and these are told from the third person perspective. This is absolutely fine once you get used to this shifting style and you can think 'right, we are focusing on Luca now'. Except in chapter 41 where both Luca and Jane are in the scene and the author can't seem to decide if she is following Luca in the 3rd person or Jane in the 1st person and jarringly shifts perspective WITHIN THE SAME PARAGRAPH! I personally think that this is a really amateurish mistake, and really bewildering for the reader.

The first book left me so confused because I genuinely couldn't decide if it was genius or complete rubbish- but this is just bad. Aside from the bad writing the story itself is only ok. The different scenes making up the jigsaw of the story didn't really fit together, and some parts just felt irrelevant. Luca was moody and mean at times, Jane needs to stick up for herself more, and I still have no idea whose side Raphael is on. I don't think I have accidentally let some spoilers slip in this review, but because the book is so bad my advice is to just avoid it like the plague.

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