Weregirl and Chimera by C.D. Bell [arc review]
I should have written a review here for Weregirl long time ago, but I guess posting a review on both the first and second book in a series at the same time has its advantages! 😊
For the book blurb: Weregirl
One of these days, Nessa, you’re going to stop running for no reason and start chasing after something more fun.
It is a little difficult to review Weregirl, and it baffles me every time I think about it... I sat on my couch to read it and kept thinking to myself:"yah...its good, not amazing, but good". Then I looked at the clock and 5 hours have gone by... I was only a few pages away from the end. It was 2 am and I most certainly should be in bed. Humm... what? how?
So... is the book amazing? Well... any book that can make you lose track of time like that is amazing on my eyes. I guess since its a shape-shifting story small parts of it are a tad predictable, and perhaps that is what made me think it was just ok while reading the first half of the book. But as the story progressed I most certainly was no longer thinking it was just ok. It evolved into a great story with fun and easy to love characters.
So I guess that is something for you, the reader, to keep in mind. It is a shape-shifting book, if that is not usually your thing you probably won't like it. Think the Wolves of Mercy Falls series by Maggie Stiefvater (also known as the shiver series). I freaking love that series -and anything Stiefvater writes-, so if you like that, chances are you are really going to like this too. Stiefvater has a slower writing style, things happen in Weregirl a little faster. A good thing in my opinion as that is usually my one one only complaint about Stiefvater's books.
Nessa's character was very interesting. She was not your usual 'save the world' heroine. Think Amber Lynn To 10 Heroine Stereotypes : The only one who can do it, Damsel in distress, Badass without a cause, The help me/don't help me heroine, Bed hopping heroine, The too torn to function heroine, The cannon fodder, The mercenary, The one who dances with the Dark, and The girl I wish I was.
Nessa does not fall into any of those categories, she is her own self. She knows what she wants and she is working very hard to get it. Getting bitten by Wolf and turning into one adds things to her 'to-do-list' but does derail her from her previous life, wishes and dreams. She is a teen, so there are boys, but she is neither avoiding boys or stupidly in love, she is who she is. She accepts the things life throws at her and I loved her character all the more for it.
The other character worth mentioning is Bree. Nessa's best friend. She was fun and brave through out. A loyal friend that acted very much like one would expect a teen girl to act. It added a certain lightness to the story.
And I loved the ending. Every time Nessa's paths would cross with a certain someone I would literally cringe and hold on to a scream. I just knew....
Favorite character?! The Gray Wolf! But I will say no more.... Go Read!
YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED
For the Book Blurb: Chimera
I was still swooing over Nessa and Luc when I started Chimera. My main thought was: C.D.Bell made me wait all the way to the last page to see my babies together, she better not mess that up! LOL
Luc is no shadow of doubt my favorite character. Why? because I identify with his personality. He rarely says anything and when he does it is only the necessary. He is always on task. He is also the character that made my heart ache throughout the book, but that is one spoiler I wont give away. Just know, that if you love him as much as I do, it will hurt and make you angry and make you smile... conflicting emotions all the way!
Nessa's character is a little different here. In Weregirl she was your every day teen. She was a runner trying to best her time to get scholarships; she had a normal-ish family ('cause no family is truly normal); she was brave, but not unafraid; she knew the wolves chose her but had little trust on herself.
In Chimera Nessa is a lot more confident. School is no longer a priority. Family is. Understanding her mother's past and getting to know her estranged father takes center stage. She is willing to take chances and trusts herself a lot more.
For the first half of the book I felt exactly the same way I did with Weregirl. A bit uncertain... the 'good but not great' feeling playing along in my mind constantly.
But just like in Weregirl, about half way through the story picked up and got very intense. I was suffering some serious anxiety issues towards the end of that book! Goodness... so much happened!
I believe that Weregirl was a little better than Chimera. Hence I gave Weregirl 4.4/5 and Chimera 4/5. The reason neither book got a 5 from me was that the first half of both books was not as gripping and intense as the second. And the reason I believe Weregirl was a tad better was because it was more consistent and believable. For example, in Chimera Nessa's mother is said to hate her father, to the point she would rather die than ask for his help. Yet towards the end her mother asks Nessa to move in with her Father. What?!
The ending was PHENOMENAL! I was afraid the whole way through of what would happen to Luc and eventually also to her mother. Their endings were beautiful. Sad in many ways.... I freaking cried my heart out... but beautiful! I would even be happy if this was the end and I got no answers to the trillion questions left open. It was that Perfect!
Now's lets talk book covers......
Chimera was an arc (thank you thank you thank you Weregirl team!!!)
But Weregirl I purchase at a small local store near me. Why? because I loved the cover. That is it. No other reason. I barely read the blurb. The title and the cover just sang to me. I had to have it. You see, I have a weakness for pretty book covers and for shape-shifting stories! (if you've known me for a while you know my obsession with a certain dragon-man series for example)
Then I received Chimera................................No offense guys, but what?! I am a visual person. Were I out in a store looking for books without ever having heard of Weregirl I would not look at Chimera twice.
The series went from stunning book cover to 'lets hide this in the back'
Sorry. Truth must be told!
Anyway... if you've read this review this far you know to ignore the book cover. The book was great.