Monday, November 7, 2011

Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Beautiful Chaos
(Caster Chronicles #3)
by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl
Summary from Goodreads:

"Ethan Wate thought he was getting used to the strange, impossible events happening in Gatlin, his small Southern town. But now that Ethan and Lena have returned home, strange and impossible have taken on new meanings. Swarms of locusts, record-breaking heat, and devastating storms ravage Gatlin as Ethan and Lena struggle to understand the impact of Lena's Claiming. Even Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals is affected - and their abilities begin to dangerously misfire. As time passes, one question becomes clear: What - or who - will need to be sacrificed to save Gatlin?

For Ethan, the chaos is a frightening but welcome distraction. He's being haunted in his dreams again, but this time it isn't by Lena - and whatever is haunting him is following him out of his dreams and into his everyday life. Even worse, Ethan is gradually losing pieces of himself - forgetting names, phone numbers, even memories. He doesn't know why, and most days he's too afraid to ask.
Sometimes there isn't just one answer or one choice. Sometimes there's no going back. And this time there won't be a happy ending."

I am disappointed.

I started reading Beautiful Chaos with a huge smile and ended up with a frown on my face.

After the great adventure I experienced with Beautiful Darkness, I expected Beautiful Chaos to surpass the excitement and thrill of the 2nd book of the Caster Chronicles. Sadly, it just dragged on; and to think that I was really, really eager to see a lot of great things from this book.

There were several elements that bothered me while reading Beautiful Chaos, and they are as follows:

THE PACING. It didn’t bother me that the first book, Beautiful Creatures, started out slow; I get it. There were a lot of things I needed to sink my brain into. Then came Beautiful Darkness that blew me away with such a thrilling adventure, which up until now, I could still not get over by the way. Unfortunately Beautiful Chaos came out slower than the first and just happened to be even less eventful too.

CHARACTER INTERACTION. None of the characters wanted to tell anybody anything. They’ve always been so secretive during the first and second book, and it’s obvious that keeping secrets just gets them deeper into trouble and yet they keep doing so. I really wanted to jump inside the book and slap each character senseless. When will they ever learn???

PROBLEM SOLVING SKILLS. Another thing the characters don’t seem to learn or improve at. The constant “I don’t know” and “We need to figure out soon” is really getting old. They keep saying they’ll figure it out and yet ‘till the end, they still haven’t. They keep trying to find a way to solve it fast but then end up with something else to worry about. It’s an endless cycle.

THE NUMBER OF PAGES. 500+ pages of all of talk and worry and not much going on is a pain. There are some chapters that I felt asking myself if they were really necessary to the story or not.

CLIFFHANGERS. Another endless matter. How many moons will it take for anything to actually happen that’ll push me off my seat?

NOT ENOUGH LINK. Seriously?! He turns into a quarter-incubus and that’s when he gets pushed aside? I had seen him in a more significant role as a mere mortal than now when he’s got more power in him. Not cool.

So there. I feel so bad for ranting out but I really had such high hopes for this book. I’m a little skeptical about reading the next after this. I don’t know if it would get anywhere at all.


  1. Oh noes! I've actually just started reading. I love Garcia/Stohl's prose... it's immersive and flowing, and kind of hypnotic... so I kind of get distracted from the 'ummm... but nothing's happening'.

    I HATE cliffhangers. HATE. They bother me, because if I like a book enough, I'll read it anyway. They feel kind of cheap to me?

    Dang. I do wonder where this series is heading, sometimes? If there's an end in sight... shall see what I think. Thanks for the review!

  2. The amazing turn of events aside, the writing style is nothing if not poetic. As I've said about the previous books, every word is relevant whether it be straight-forward or metaphoric. The authors have a way of describing the world they created that constantly gets your wheels turning or running to your notebook to write down a quote you never want to forget.

    All of the above, I love, without a doubt... But this story would be nothing without the characters and their relationships with each other. Lena and Ethan remain attached at the mind, but Ethan grows to become something outside of their relationship, something bigger that the town of Gatlin and the secret Tunnels combined. Link's and Ridley's relationship is pretty rocky, but what else is new? Though there is some pretty heavy significance in the way they express themselves to each other... Amma remains a rock though her love for her family shakes her resolve - something I never thought I'd see.. Guess we are all vulnerable no matter how strong we'd like to seem.. John Breed, Liv, Marion, Macon, the Sisters, even Boo Radley - as a reader, I could connect to all of these characters and they all maintained their roles, no matter how small, with a grace all their own..

    I can't express enough how much I adore this series...


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