Thursday, July 21, 2011

Demonglass (Hex Hall #2) by Rachel Hawkins


Demonglass (Hex Hall #2) by Rachel Hawkins

March 1, 2011; Disney Book Group

Summary

Sophie Mercer's first mistake was thinking that she is a witch. Actually, she's a demon. Her second miscue was developing a throbbing crush on Archer Cross, a secret agent hell-bent on destroying her and her classmates at Hecate Hall (a.k.a. Hex Hall). In this second series installment, Sophie takes off on a transatlantic summer break project designed to de-demonize her; which, unfortunately, is a gnarly process complicated by a very new conspiracy. An entertaining ride for young paranormal fans. (courtesy of Goodreads)

Review


*Don't read this if you haven't read Hex Hall. Contains spoilers for the big surprise in the first book.

Can you say cliffhanger? Demonglass ends on one of the biggest cliffhangers I've read in quite awhile. Now every time I think of the book, "cliffhanger" is the first thing that comes to mind.

Of course, Demonglass is so much more than its ending. It is a great sequel to an excellent first book. The setting changes from Hecate Academy to a big house in London where Sophie spends the summer with her father, the Council, two demons, and her friends Cal and Jenna. It's an opportunity for Sophie to learn a little more about demons, who up to now she only sees as evil, unthinking killing fiends. She wants to go through the Removal procedure to rid herself of her own powers in fear that she will one day turn into the demon she hates. The summer gives her the opportunity to get some context before making a decision.

Demonglass avoids the second-book syndrome by changing settings and opening up so many new plot opportunities. It was a brilliant choice by the author. At the same time, we still get to revisit characters and themes that we loved from the first book, including cute Jenna and swoon-worthy, maybe evil Archer Cross.

The book moves smoothly and is easy to read. It definitely becomes a page turner at the end, but there is plenty of action and danger interspersed throughout the book. I always like books that don't make me wait until the last 50 pages for things to start happening.

The highlight of Demonglass for me is the same as it was in Hex Hall. The humor and sarcasm. Sophie always has a snarky comment at the tip of her tongue, whether or not the time is really appropriate for sarcasm. It lightens an otherwise serious subject. A good sense of humor is so rare in paranormal romance that any book that employs it frequently is a welcome change. Demonglass definitely does that.

I continue to love Sophie. She starts out bound and determined not to become the thing she hates, but then is willing to consider other options as she learns more about what she is. She continues to be a good friend to Jenna, but also is not immune to jealousy and a quick temper. The book does a great job of showing how conflicted she is about Archer. Her inherent trust mixed with distrust of Archer and the things it leads her to do drives much of the book. And as I said, Sophie always has a witty comment to lighten an otherwise serious moment.

My only qualms with this book was a few of the secondary characters. Particularly Daisy and Nick, the other demons. I thought their characters could have been explored more fully, especially Nick's oddities that were introduced but not developed as well as I would have liked. I also would have like a little more Jenna time. She does play an important role in the book, but I thought there were a few loose ends. Perhaps that was on purpose.

Demonglass is another demonstration of Rachel Hawkins' talent as a writer. I highly recommend this series to anyone who has not yet read it.

Rating: 4 / 5

18 comments:

  1. I loved Hex Hall! I really want to read Demonglass. (For one thing, the covers of these books are absolutely gorgeous.)
    Are yo by any chance interested in trading your copy of Demonglass?

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  2. I completely agree with everything you've said in this review Alison. I had the same problems with Nick and Daisy. They seemed to be such a integral part of the while Council vs The Eye thing and yet they got hardly any page time. Having said that I absolutely loved Demonglass (or Raising Demons) as it was titled in Australia.

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  3. Great review, Alison! At this point I think I need to check the first instalment...

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  4. Lovely review. I really enjoyed this series! :)

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  5. I totally agree with your brilliant review :D I loved Demonglass, but what a cliffhanger! I really can't wait for Spell Bound :D

    Happy reading!

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  6. I need to read this asap. I really enjoyed Hex Hall and I really like Sophie as a main character!

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  7. I hope the third book hurries up and gets published already! I had Demonglass from the library, but I sent it back unread after hearing about that awful cliffhanger. I'm loving everything I'm hearing about DG! I like that Jenna plays a large part.

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  8. I just adore this series! And you're right, the sarcasm is really the highlight, Sophie just makes me laugh even when it's not the best time to be laughing:) I also need more of Cal, he was so adorable!

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  9. Didnt read it because i havent read the first one but plan too. Love the covers on these books.

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  10. I just finished this book and felt the same way. I love Sophie's character. And that cliffhanger ending was just evil.

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  11. HA! You review this one too! I gasp at the part about her (hint*ring finger) don't want to ruin it for others. But I loved this book!

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  12. I love swoon-worthy, maybe evil Archer Cross! And I have to agree, the best thing about this series is Sophie's character. She is just so much fun.

    I would have liked to know more about Nick and Daisy as well. The fact that they were left a mystery felt more sloppy than intentional.

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  13. I love this series - it's so fun! Yes, that was one almighty cliffhanger!! Can't wait to find out what happens next! :)

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  14. I loved this one! Not as much as Hex Hall - I agree with you about characters like Nick and Daisy, but I still really enjoyed it. And the cliffhanger - wow. I need to read the next book!

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  15. I really need to start this series!!!

    Fab review as always :D

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  16. I've really enjoyed this series so far...though the cliffhanger made me want to scream! Still, I'm dying for the next one. And, like you, I do love the wit and sarcasm that proliferates this series.
    Mary @ Book Swarm

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  17. Lol I like how the first thing that you mention was the cliffhanger. It was a big one and I can't wait for the third book. I'm glad that you enjoyed this book and I hope Archer turns out to be a good guy in the end, well a good guy with a slight bad edge. :)

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  18. I read Hex Hall a few months ago, but I've still yet to pick up this one. Glad to know its worth waiting for, and am definitely looking forward to reading it once I have the chance.

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