This is my final review for Summer Reading Wrap-up. I can't believe I was able to finish both books. This is also my first review for the Dusty Bookshelf Challenge.
The cover first attracted me to this book. I love how the font looks alive, like it is part of a tree. Since the book was described as a gothic romance, I thought I would give it a try.
Ethan Wate's one goal in life is to leave Gatlin and go anywhere else. His mother has recently died, his father has become a recluse, and Amma, their housekeeper, is the closest thing to a parent he has. Amma practices her form of magic, using bones to talk to her ancestors, and leaving protective charms around the Wate's house. Ethan eagerly awaits graduation, although he is only a sophomore, so that he can escape his life. However, Ethan begans being haunted by a dream and a girl he cannot save. When a new girl, Lena, comes to town, Ethan sees her as the girl from his dreams, but she is the daughter of the town's "Boo Radley," Macon Ravenwood. Despite Lena being shunned by the town, Ethan is drawn to her and she is drawn to him. If their only problem was town prejudice, the relationship might last, but Lena has a bigger problem. Lena is a Caster, a family that uses either Dark magic or Light magic, and she is almost sixteen. For Casters, sixteen is the year they choose their paths, or in Lena's branch's case their destiny is chosen for them. Lena and Ethan must find a way to break her sixteen year curse or risk losing each other.
I loved the setting and the way Garcia and Stohl described Gatlin and its residents. Ethan is also a great narrator and it was nice to read from a male point of view, since lately many of the series I have read are from the girls'. The romance was sweet and innocent and although it was a little love at first sight, the authors gave the characters time to grow together by starting the story over 170 days before Lena's birthday.
Favorite Character: Ethan was my favorite. He really wants to get out of his small town, which is what most of us from a small town dream about doing. He is also very loving and loyal to his family, his best friend, and Lena. His best friend Link was also a great character and very funny.
Favorite Quote: "'Just because you live in the middle of nowhere, doesn't mean you can't know where you live.'" This was said by Marian the librarian of Gatlin and another really neat character.
I loved the characters of this book and its setting and I can't wait to visit it again with the next book! This was another 5 bars of chocolate book for me!