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Friday, July 23, 2010

Review: WEREling

Title: WEREling
Author: Steve Feasey
Page Count: 288 pages
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Genre: urban fantasy, young adult
Copy for review provided by Book it Forward Tours in anticipation of an honest review

50 words or less: Trey Laporte could give lessons in emotional whiplash- he goes from an orphan living in a group home to independently wealthy and a lycanthrope with a mysterious guardian and a life-threatening quest. Naturally.

WEREling was one of those books that struck all my sensitive areas at once, so to speak. Shapeshifter hero? Got it. Paranormal conflict? All over it. Blossoming teenage love interest. More, please. Male protagonist who isn't a creep or a bizarrely perfect weirdo? Excellent. The raw material was all there but at the end of the day I found that WEREling had a tough time delivering on its promise.

I think most of my issues stemmed from the erratic pacing of this story. We start off meeting Trey as he's waking up from an incredibly ordeal in his room at the group home; all of his things are destroyed and he's in the midst of the migraine from hell. When the mysterious Lucien Charron shows up and, like Calgon, takes him away, he's thrust into a world that he couldn't imagine before and is frankly having an understandably difficult time imagining now. There's a lot of infodumping going on, whether it be about Trey's life, if he chooses to stay with Lucien and his daughter, Alexa; about the mythology surrounding Trey, his existence, and why the bad guy, Caliban, hates him so much; about the resources that are now available to Trey since he's no longer a ward of the state; hell, about anything. Just when I started to get engrossed in the story, the emergency brake got put on and we started talking about something else.

Also, two words: sputum djinn. Enough said.

I'm not saying that this is a terrible book, because it isn't. I wish we'd spent a lot more time exploring Trey's powers as the only naturally-born werewolf on the planet and a little less time doing the "oh by the way" stuff (is there anything Alexa CAN'T do? I'm just asking.) I've read many glowing reviews of this book and wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it, but it definitely wasn't my cup of tea.

Overall Grade: C-


The Readings of a Busy Mom said...

such a great and honest review....i totally understand what you mean

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Tina said...

Once again the ever impressive review...I think you need to start writing stand up..."=P

Emily said...

@The Readings of a Busy Mom- Thanks! I've found that if I can start predicting the story of a book because it parallels another book too closely, I start to have issues. I think when you read enough in one genre, a story that uses familiar elements but doesn't add anything new is a problem.

@Tina- Aww, thank you! :D

Anonymous said...

i disagree i thiink the book wereling is awesome

Anonymous said...

yeah me too i think this book was cool u suck

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