Book One in the Splintered Series
Rating: Three (generous) Stars out of Five Stars
5 Stars for the cover. 4 Stars for the first and last 50 pages. 2 Stars for everything else.
To be completely honest… I read this because of the cover art. Splintered is some legit cover porn. It’s vivid, bright and in your face gorgeous! Every time I picked up the book to read I would drool over it. Stare longingly into her eyes… try to come up with an emotion she’s portraying…. It’s captivating.
With that being said, the actual story left me wanting. The first 50 pages I was instantly drawn in to Alyssa. I immediately understood her emotions and her reactions towards the situation she’s in. There was enough of the old Alice story layered into the beginning of the plot that I was infatuated with how things could play out.
But…. once the incident at the asylum happens with Alyssa’s mom and she trips into Wonderland and begins the real adventure we all expect from this type of book, it’s gone. Buh Bye Alyssa whom I love. Hello typical YA novel. Now, Wonderland spinoffs and rewrites are always interesting and I’ve read my fair share of them (The Looking Glass Wars is pretty awesome). This one intrigued me because of the dark gothic-ness of the story line. While it did have the surreal characters, dark and creepy and fantastical, it was overshadowed by the all the other junk I’ve seen before. Love triangle, 0-60 lovefests in one chapter, self depreciating teen heroine, blah blah blah.
I know that Alyssa has always loved Jeb and so the InstaLove isn’t exactly “instant”, but where’s the awkwardness of transitioning out of friends into a relationship? It goes from brotherly protectiveness to sexified makeout scence and then possesive creepiness. Ummmm awkward much? I didn’t understand the relationship at all, it was so poorly developed. And with the pro-tag being in this weirdly relationship-but-not and having a mistress status, (because um the dude HAS A GRILFRIEND YOU TRAMP) the plot when from fame to lame pretty quick. And gag me with how insecure she is. Weak weak weak! I can’t stand weak characters! And Alyssa, why don’t you want to be with the butterfly? He’s hot and looooves and you guys have matching tattoos! TWINSIES!
The story picks up a little at the end so it was nice to end on a high note. But the lack of character development in the love interest was such a disappointment I don’t really have a desire to read another book of Howard’s. Ever. Or at least any time soon.