Release Date: October 2, 2012
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Ten years ago, Lorelei's parents disappeared without a trace. Raised by her grandparents and leaning on the support of her best friends, Lorelei is finally beginning to accept the fact that her parents are never coming home. For Lorelei, life goes on.
High school is not quite as painful as she thinks it will be, and things are as normal as they can be. Until the day the school's designated loner, Cameron Lusk, begins to stalk her, turning up where she least expects it, standing outside her house in the dark, night after night. Things get even more complicated when a new guy—terrifying, tough, sexy Jared Kovach—comes to school. Cameron and Jared instantly despise each other and Lorelei seems to be the reason for their animosity. What does Jared know about her parents? Why does Cameron tell Jared he can't have Lorelei? And what will any of them do when Death comes knocking for real? (courtesy of Goodreads)
So many bloggers have raved about Darynda Jones's books that I've been dying to read them. I decided to pick up her YA series first. With the first book the Darklight series, I'm definitely a Darynda Jones fan and look forward to reading more of her YA and adult books.
Lorelai is your everyday small-town New Mexican teenager, except for the fact that she occasionally has visions when she touches people. She helps her grandma tend the family store, loves her iMac, stresses over tests, complains that she's too short, and spends most of her time hanging out with her two best friends. But everything changes when she meets Jared "supernova hot" Kovach.
I went into Death and the Girl Next Door blind. I didn't read the synopsis and I couldn't remember any specifics from reviews I'd read. It was fun to be surprised as the paranormal twist revealed itself. And so it did, with a literal death-defying bang as Lorelai was thrown to her death - except for the fact that she didn't die. This was followed up immediately by a crazed fight between Jared and Cameron, the school loner who's been stalking Lorelai. Needless to say, the book was full of action. The paranormal element is of a type that I've read before, but Ms. Jones writes in such a way that it doesn't feel tired. I don't want to give it away in case you want to be surprised like I was.
The highlight of the book was Lorelai's friends, Brooklyn and Glitch. Especially Glitch. They're the type of friends who will stand next to you and face any danger, no questions asked. Even better, they'll chime in with a few snarky, geeky quips that will make you roll your eyes and laugh. Cameron too quickly grew on me. He has a hard exterior that covers a painful past and a great responsibility. He has a dark sense of humor that I love.
I was a fan of Jared, although he was not my favorite character. He's your typical alpha, emo, dangerous, dark hero. He's likable and his passion for Lorelai definitely set my heart pounding a few times, but I think I've read a few too many books lately with his personality type. Plus, Lorelai went on Bella-style about his hotness (although not quite so bad).
Death and the Girl Next Door is a very fast read. Like I said earlier, it is chock full of action and jumps from one scene to the other - perhaps too quickly sometimes but at least it doesn't drag. Ms. Jones does a good job in giving us enough information about the characters and the paranormal world to make this first installment feel complete while leaving plenty of holes for future books to fill. The book doesn't break any new ground in the paranormal realm, but it does put a new spin on a frequently told world and managed to surprised me with some extra twists at the end. I'm looking forward to seeing where the Darklight series goes.
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I have this on my kindle! I'm glad it's a fun, fast read.ReplyDelete
I like a good alpha male but, for some reason, it doesn't always translate to YA. They come across as kind of douche-y because they don't have the maturity to back it up. Still, I really want to read this series! I love her adult series.ReplyDelete
I agree that this one moved too quickly at times, and this is especially true for the second book. Jared, while certainly hot and alpha and moderately appealing didn't quite work for me either, mostly because he reminded me too much of Reyes from Darynda's adult series.ReplyDelete
Great review, Alison.
I didn't particularly care for her YA series to be honest. The characters were just okay and the plot didn't really come together until the second half where everything seems to happen all at once. I do love her Charley series and I think I'm just going to stick with that one.ReplyDelete
Glad you enjoyed this one for the most part Alison, I really liked it as well! I agree things moved quickly, but I didn't mind that so much, there were definitely no lulls in the action. And I couldn't have loved Brooklyn and Glitch any more if I'd tried. They were awesome:) Can't wait to read book 2!ReplyDelete
I've heard so much about this book, I really need to get around to reading it. It seems like people either love or hate this title, so I want to check it out for myself. Maybe I'll start off my spring break with this one, your review has me intrigued!ReplyDelete
I liked this one. I read it a bit ago, and I must admit that I remember very little of the story. I'm kind of curious about the second in the series.ReplyDelete
Yeah, after reading rave reviews there was something that just told me I wouldn't enjoy it as much as I thought. Thanks for sharing.ReplyDelete
I've been meaning to read this for so long, your review has reminded me that I really should try and get to it, I like the sound all the action and the fast pace ;)ReplyDelete
And no, all of the bands mentioned in my GD review are international, not Aussie, but we do have plenty of Aussie music here, it just depends on what sort of music you like :)
Glad to hear you enjoyed this one overall, despite it being somewhat predictable. I"m glad it puts a new spin on an old paranormal twist. And thank you for not revealing it, because I really want to read this one, and I love being surprised. :-) I read a few positive reviews of the sequel, so now I'm even more excited to start this one. Great review!ReplyDelete
Great review! It seems like something I would like- I'm interested by the paranormal twist. I'll have to add this to the TBR pile!ReplyDelete
Well, you liked it way more than I did.. I didn't like the romance as well as the action and how choppy it was.ReplyDelete
glad you liked it though,
- Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf
Glad you enjoyed this, I am a huge fan of her adult series, and this one was just ok for me, I have heard book two of this series is better. Welcome to the wonderful world of Jones!ReplyDelete
My mom loves Darynda's adult books!! :) She tried this one out but she said it wasn't as good as her adult series, which made me hesitant to try this one. I am glad that you liked it for the most part. I feel so risky when I go into a book blind. ;) It is kind of exciting!!ReplyDelete
I think this is actually one of the more positive reviews I've seen for this one, but I appreciate you had fun with it. I only just found out about this Darynda Jones and all her fans, myself, but she sounds like a pretty entertaining author.ReplyDelete
I read the Kindle sample and felt it was a bit young for me. I would be interested in reading her adult novels though!ReplyDelete
I'm a big fan of Darynda Jones novel, her adult series were really great! I love the fact that Darynda has decided to write a YA series.ReplyDelete
Alpha, dark and dangerous sounds right up my alley, and glad to hear it adds a new spin to the para genre.ReplyDelete
Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog
I read the first book in her adult series and loved it! And I've been wanting to check out this new series as well. I have heard some mixed things though so I'm happy to see that this was a pretty enjoyable read for you.ReplyDelete
This is on my TBR. I've read her adult series and was a huge fan, so I'm interested to see how this one turns out. Great review!ReplyDelete