I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Lailah by Nikki Kelly
Series: The Styclar Saga #1
Published by Feiwel and Friends on October 7th 2014
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
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The girl knows she’s different. She doesn’t age. She has no family. She has visions of a past life, but no clear clues as to what she is, or where she comes from. But there is a face in her dreams – a light that breaks through the darkness. She knows his name is Gabriel.
On her way home from work, the girl encounters an injured stranger whose name is Jonah. Soon, she will understand that Jonah belongs to a generation of Vampires that serve even darker forces. Jonah and the few like him, are fighting with help from an unlikely ally – a rogue Angel, named Gabriel.
In the crossfire between good and evil, love and hate, and life and death, the girl learns her name: Lailah. But when the lines between black and white begin to blur, where in the spectrum will she find her place? And with whom?
Gabriel and Jonah both want to protect her. But Lailah will have to fight her own battle to find out who she truly is.
I have two questions: what did I just read and why did I read it? If you’re wondering why I’ve been reduced to questioning my life choices, let me introduce you to Lailah.
So, Lailah (or Francesca? I’m not even sure what to call her) cannot die or age. She doesn’t know what she is or where she’s from. Basically, she has the worst identity crisis ever. Throw a dark vampire and a model-esque angel to her already complicated life and you get:
A) A story that has been told time and time again
B) A terrible love triangle
C) Another Bella Swan
D) All of the above
If you answered D, then congratulations! You are now a proud member of the “Can I Burn This Book Now or Later” Club.
This Lailah/Francesca/Cessie-for-short character is one of those that I want to eradicate from the YA world. I might be a little biased here because I made up my mind about her by page nineteen. Why page nineteen, you ask? Because this girl, whom I’m told has lived many lives has NO SENSE OF SURVIVAL. Actually, maybe that’s why she keeps dying. Fun fact: if you ever find yourself walking by the woods and you happen to come across an injured vampire, help him. Take him to your house (even though you live alone) and let him feed from you. That’s the Lailah way. Ignore the fact that you have a horrible scar from a previous vampire encounter. Don’t listen to that inner voice telling you that he’s evil and he’ll kill you if he gets the chance. No. Please go out of your way to practically put yourself in the most dangerous situation ever. Because that makes perfect sense, right? Honestly, I rolled my eyes so much at this character’s lack of common sense that it’ll take me weeks to stop doing that at 30 second intervals.
Terrible main character aside (I’m ignoring the love triangle on purpose because my sanity is more important than going down that road), the writing wasn’t any better. It didn’t flow at all because the transitions were awful. I was confused more times that I’m comfortable in admitting. Also, the author resorted to the most genetic characters I’ve read in a while. Lailah is plain, practical, and with no sense of style. Gabriel (the angel dude) looks like a model but he has a secret. Tuntuntunnnn. This makes me feel like I just read a retelling of a paranormal novel that I won’t mention by name but we all love to hate. Unfortunately, my complaints don’t stop there.
Now, I have to focus my attention on the setting. It was so dull that I almost cried. This is a huge shame because it takes place in a lot of great locations. I feel like the author didn’t explore the surroundings at all. Instead, she left me feeling like the story could’ve taken place anywhere. Don’t like Wales? Just think of a place and plant the terribly genetic characters there. It won’t make a difference.
If you read this and you’re still like “BUT SULKY VAMPIRES! AND HUNKY ANGELS! GIVE IT TO MEEEE” let me leave you with this: even my cat tried to eat it at one point. And I almost let him.