Monday, March 12, 2012

Review- Illuminated by Erica Orloff


Paperback, 256 pages
Published December 8th 2011 by Speak
Some loves are not made to last . . . Like Romeo and Juliet, Heloise and Abelard were doomed from the start, and their romance was destined to pass into history. Yet when sixteen-year-old Callie Martin discovers a diary hidden within an antique book, their story—and hers—takes on another life. For the diary leads Callie to the brilliant and handsome August, who is just as mysterious as the secret the diary hides. Their attraction is undeniable. As the two hunt down the truth behind the diary—and that of Heloise and Abelard’s ancient romance—their romance becomes all-consuming. But Callie knows it can’t last . . . love never does. Will their love that burns as bright as a shooting star flame out, or will these star-crossed lovers be able to defy history?

Can I just start off by saying this is one beautiful cover? You can't tell much because the picture's so small but there are a bunch of glimmering little stars lining just about everything-Gorgeous!

I can honestly say I'd been dying to read this book since I saw its cover reveal up on Goodreads a few months back. Sadly, though, I feel like this book didn't exactly live up to expectations.

When I first read the summary, I was looking forward to reading about some sort of exciting treasure hunt tinged with romance, not just opposite. Instead of reading about hunting down historic artifacts, I was reading about someone telling someone else about hunting down these artifacts. This, mixed with a bundle of lovey-dovey chapters, takes up most of the novel.
I found myself wanting to skip through scenes constantly because
I waiting for the book to get to the point and stop all the small-talk. There was way too much story telling for my liking.
Callie was mostly an enjoying character, as was August, but I found them both too hard to connect with, and a little TOO fictional for me.
A lot of the dialogue was stiff, and I felt like Callie and August were more like fifty year-old bureaucrats and not teenagers. Both their voices were a bit too sophisticated for their age.

Putting all this aside, my biggest issue throughout the novel had to be the pace. Callie and August connected almost instantly, which isn't uncommon in most YA, but after only two or three days knowing each other, both are confessing their loves for one another...which felt a little too soon for me. There was really no build-up in the novel, and it felt like they were pretty much a couple all through-out the book.

On the plus side, though, this novel would be great for anyone who's searching for just that: a fast-paced love story where characters connect on sight and continue to do so throughout the course of the novel. If you're big on reading into history, this book is probably for you too.

2 stars to Illuminated by Erica Orloff

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