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I Belong


Review: Nocturne by Christine Johnson

Title: Nocturne

Author: Christine Johnson

Genre: YA Romance

Series: Claire de Lune (Book 2)

Publication Date: August 23, 2011

Format: Hardcover, 355 Pages

ISBN-10: 144240776X (Simon Pulse)

ISBN-13: 978-1442407763 (Simon Pulse)

Reviewed by: Shirene

Synopsis

Some secrets are too dangerous…

After the tragic events of the summer, Claire is looking forward to a new school year.  All she wants to worry about is finding the most gorgeous dress to wear to the Autumn Ball with her perfect boyfriend.

But as Claire knows all too well, the life of a werewolf is never that simple, or that sweet.

Then her worst nightmare comes true.  Someone discovers Claire’s secret.

If Claire’s werewolf identity is exposed, everyone she knows will be put at risk.  And the pack’s response comes at a cost higher then Claire can imagine.  Claire will be forced to determine just how far she is willing to go to protect her family, her identity, and her life, before she loses it all…

Quick & Dirty: Can Claire straddle her two lives, one as a teenage girl with a friends and boyfriend and as a werewolf with responsibilities to her pack?

Opening SentenceClaire’s human form offered no protection from the chill in the moonlit clearing.

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

As some of you may remember, I reviewed Claire de Lune, book 1 of this series a couple of weeks ago and I was left neutral but had high hopes for book 2.  I’m sorry to say my hopes were dashed.

Nocturne builds upon our ties to book 1 but this story took way too long to develop.  The plot goes off on numerous side roads instead of getting us to the point, which is how Claire deals with her identity as a werewolf becoming known by a human.

Meanwhile, I don’t think anyone will miss the HUGE markers that we are given as to the human who discovers Claire’s secret.  It was like Ms. Johnson left neon lights on the secret guesser which was a true shame.  There should have been a red herring or two in the hopes that the reader would guess wrong.  But when words such as “paying so much attention to me” and “something suspicious in her voice” makes it hard to miss the obvious.

What should have been an oasis was Claire’s relationship with Matthew but it definitely wasn’t.  His character becomes a cardboard representation of his self until the last 60 pages, which I was shocked at.  I felt his character was so strong at the end of Claire de Lune and he came across as wimpy and self obsessed for the majority of the book.

Thankfully Emily’s character is less abrasive but that is softened with the addition of Amy to our merry troop.  Amy is the typical blonde, All American girl that everyone loves.  She finds her way into almost every scene with Emily and helps tone down all the things that annoyed me about Emily from the first book.

Lastly we have Marie, Claire’s mom and Alpha.  She has moments where she shines as a mother and also as the Alpha but overall her character is not one that endears her to a reader’s heart.  Her attitude about the Autumn Ball and other “human” activities started to really grate on my nerves by the end of the book.

The story doesn’t really get interesting until the last 60 pages and the rest of the story is ordinary.  Additionally, this is a book that I nearly threw across the room during the last 60 pages while Claire is dealing with the repercussions of her secret becoming known.  The overall impression of this book is give it a miss.

Notable Scene:

Hang out?  A quiver passed through Claire.  Why was Amy paying so much attention to her?

Claire gave her an apologetic shrug.  “Maybe next time?”

If next time was in a million years and Claire wasn’t a werewolf.

So, actually, maybe never, but there was no good reason to be bitchy.  She gave herself a mental shake.  Amy was Emily’s friend.  She was nice to people.  She probably cried during ASPCA commercials.

“Definitely next time.”  Amy grinned, looking like she’d won the lottery.  “You two off to the after party?”

“We haven’t decided yet,” Matthew said.

Claire de Lune Series:

1. Claire de Lune

2. Nocturne

FTC Advisory: Simon and Schuster provided me with a copy of Nocturne. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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