Published by HarperTeen on September 6th 2016
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I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Maria Lyon and Lily Boiten are their school’s ultimate power couple—even if no one knows it but them.
Only one thing stands between them and their perfect future: campus superstar Delilah Dufrey.
Golden child Delilah is a legend at the exclusive Acheron Academy, and the presumptive winner of the distinguished Cawdor Kingsley Prize. She runs the school, and if she chose, she could blow up Maria and Lily’s whole world with a pointed look, or a carefully placed word.
But what Delilah doesn’t know is that Lily and Maria are willing to do anything—absolutely anything—to make their dreams come true. And the first step is unseating Delilah for the Kingsley Prize. The full scholarship, awarded to Maria, will lock in her attendance at Stanford―and four more years in a shared dorm room with Lily.
Maria and Lily will stop at nothing to ensure their victory—including harnessing the dark power long rumored to be present on the former plantation that houses their school.
But when feuds turn to fatalities, and madness begins to blur the distinction between what’s real and what is imagined, the girls must decide where they draw the line.
From acclaimed author Robin Talley comes a Shakespeare-inspired story of revenge and redemption, where fair is foul, and foul is fair.
So this book honestly isn’t awful, the genre just isn’t really my cup of tea in the first place, so it’s not all that surprising that it didn’t work for me. This was still a relatively fast paced novel with solid LGBT representation. I think that other readers will likely respond to it a lot more positively than I did. I’m so used to reading contemporary books that it’s hard for me to get into the paranormal/horror mindset. Meaning, I still have a habit of thinking in terms of how realistic something is, when obviously that’s not important in this genre. It was a good read, but not a great one. In the end, I believe that I truly don’t have that much to say about it.
A huge reason why I was unable to connect with this book is because of the characters. I get it, this is a Macbeth retelling and those characters aren’t exactly likable either. However, at the same time, I still found myself hoping that Macbeth and Lady Macbeth would get away with everything, I was still completely invested in the story. In this case, I absolutely wanted the characters to get in trouble for their actions because I never cared about either Lily or Maria. I was also confused about their personalities, Lily seemed to be the determined Lady Macbeth character in the beginning, but all of a sudden Maria becomes the strong one? I definitely didn’t know what was going on there.
The only characters I really liked were Brandon and Mateo. I wanted more of them! So basically, I wanted them to be the main characters and Lily and Maria to get caught early on in the book. They were both fabulous and entertaining characters. They were obviously my favorite couple in the book. View Spoiler »I was beyond pissed when Brandon died. I almost gave up on the book entirely at that point. Luckily though, Mateo does survive, which I’m grateful for. Brandon was learning the truth about Maria being behind Delilah getting hurt, so Maria had to “take care” of him. Even though he was her best friend. Messed up, right? So Mateo does learn the truth, and though she tries to ruin his life then kill him, he survives. « Hide Spoiler
As I’ve made pretty clear in my past reviews, romance in a book is important to me. Basically the main reason I read this was because the description basically promised a power lesbian couple who were already together! I’ve hardly read any LGBT books (specifically f/f) where the couple got together before the book even started. It’s safe to say that I was disappointed to find that there’s little to romance in this one at all. I get that the action is clearly more important and there wasn’t much in Macbeth either, but it was still not what I was personally expecting.
As I said earlier, I was really glad to see all this LGBT representation. Lily is a lesbian and Maria is bisexual. As I already implied, Brandon and Mateo are also gay characters. There’s also diversity with Mateo and Maria. There’s also disability representation with Lily. She was in an accident and can’t walk totally on her own, she has to use crutches. So yes, the representation was present, but I wasn’t all that happy with how it actually portrayed. View Spoiler »Meaning, three out of four of the LGBT characters die. Like I said earlier, Mateo is the only one who lives. But the (kind of) straight girl who Lily and Maria tried to kill who was stuck in a coma for most of the book magically wakes up when Maria dies at the end. I’m not saying she should kill ALL the straight characters, but I’m not a fan of so many of the LGBT characters dying. Is it really necessary? Do we have to stick so closely to the original story here? « Hide Spoiler
As a whole, this was a book that was easy to read and everything, it just wasn’t my favorite. I wanted to be more invested in the characters and the plot in general. I’m not saying that every character has to be 100% likable, but as a reader, I need to at least WANT the characters to wind up happy at the end of the story. At the beginning of the review, I said that I didn’t have to say about this book, I guess I was wrong! I ended up having quite a lot to say. So to sum it up, if you’re a fan of paranormal/horror books, you’ll probably like this one.