The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
Egmont USA (December, 22 2009)
384 pages, Young adult
$12.14 (Amazon.com, 09/20/09)
Overall: 29/30 = 96% =A
Cover/Title Bonus: 4
I won this ARC on Bree’s blog in one of her monthly pre-release celebrations for The Dark Divine. I also got a bottle of matching nail polish as seen on the cover and a pedicure kit! :)
Summary (Bree’s website)
A prodigal son
A dangerous love
A deadly secret . . .
I stood back and watched his movements. Daniel had that way about him that could shut me down in an instant. . . . I kicked the gravel a couple of times and worked up my courage again. “Tell me . . . I mean . . . why did you come back? Why now, after all this time?”
Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared—the night she found her brother Jude collapsed on the porch, covered in blood. But she has no idea what a truly monstrous secret that night really held. And when Daniel returns three years later, Grace can no longer deny her attraction to him, despite promising Jude she’ll stay away.
As Grace gets closer to Daniel, her actions stir the ancient evil Daniel unleashed that horrific night. Grace must discover the truth behind Jude and Daniel's dark secret . . . and the cure that can save the ones she loves. But she may have to lay down the ultimate sacrifice to do it—her soul.
Excerpt (Bree’s Website)The first chapter is available to read on Bree’s website. It’s very good!
PlotThe above summary does an amazing job at explaining what’s going on without saying too much. This book is written so well it all flows amazingly well and keeps you guessing what will happen next.
There’s a major artist theme going on in here too. Both Grace and Daniel draw/paint, him better than her, and it’s a very cool common bond they share.
The ending was handled wonderfully. I enjoyed this entire book.
SettingThe town is said to be near Apple Valley. A lot happens in the art class, the parish, the Divine house and backyard and downtown.
It’s a fairly common setting with nothing really standing out.
I particularly enjoyed the tree climbing and finding baby James the best. OH! And the angel memorial: awesome.
It’s present time.
WritingAmazing. Seriously. I can’t explain how it’s written but it’s written very well. It’s not like books I’ve read recently. The tone is unique in a way that makes me second guess myself each page turn. The details that you’ll be guessing at are within reach but you don’t reach them until the exact moment that Grace does. LOVE THAT! I hate figuring it out before the main character. I had my guesses but so did Grace but neither of us knew until it was there.
It’s written in Grace’s POV the entire time. I wished I could get into Daniel’s head a time or three. He was very interesting and I wanted to know more about him.
OriginalityI knew what Daniel was when I read the first chapter on Bree’s website. But like I explained above Bree had me second guessing myself the entire book. So, even though I’d figured it out already I just didn’t feel 100% confident that I really knew and that kept my interest at top notch. I honestly couldn’t put the book down! I finished it at 2:00 am!
What Daniel is is easy to figure out but it gets explained very well. I enjoyed the details and thought they were very original.
CharactersGrace is the main character. She’s the daughter of the Pastor. “Pastor D-vine.” :) She’s still struggling with Daniel’s disappearance from a few years prior and doesn’t handle his return very well. She’s clearly head over heels for him and it makes her sad, angry, and heart broken.
Jude is Grace’s older brother. He’s a sweet guy, always helping others, but he’s troubled by the attack from Daniel a few years prior. He doesn’t like or trust Daniel.
Grace’s Dad is cool. He’s all about helping others too. He nearly goes mad trying to help Daniel and ultimately his entire family it seems. I enjoyed his character a lot.
Daniel. Daniel is the black sheep of his family. They abandoned him a few years back. His mom choose his dad over him, only a young boy. He returns to his home town looking for a fresh start.
PassionThis is my favorite category but sometimes it’s the hardest to review. There are major sparks flying between Daniel and Grace. I love that it was there in the story but it wasn’t the front runner. Their relationship plays a huge role in the book yet it was handled with great care. I enjoyed their relationship immensely. Me? Beat around the bush? No…..
OverallAmazing. Awesome. Superb. An unexpected thrill of a ride. I knew it was going to be good but it surpassed my expectations. It was written so well. Everything was covered and it ended well wrapped up.
Cover/Title BonusThe title is awesome. The cover….it’s beautiful and catches the eye but it doesn’t represent the book very well. I’m not sure if I’m missing something or what but I’m not crazy about the cover after reading the book. It’s gorgeous but it lacks focus or direct representation of the story.
Connect with Bree
Your thoughts?What do you think? Have you read this yet? Did you read the first chapter? What did you think?
Amazon.com Associate. If you click on my links and purchase something I will receive a very small percentage of the purchase price.