Thursday, 31 July 2014

Dark Paradise ( Dark Paradise #1) by Angie Sandro

Arc provided by Forever Yours through Netgalley

Let it be known that so far I think I've only mildly enjoyed a single New Adult novel.
So yes, you can say that this genre isn't my cup of tea... well not so much the genre per se, but one of its leading characteristics: The high level of drama and angst that these stories normally possess.

This story, despite the initial fluidity of the writing and despite having nailed a perfect ambience setting, ends up being just another carousel of feelings, with the plot being removed out of the spotlight.

And it's a shame because this had so much potential! I can't help feeling that this could have been great, if the plot hadn't been smothered by so much emotions going rampant all over the place!

The story is told through dual points of view: _Malaise (Mala), and Landry...
Landry is a twenty one year old guy, whose voice tries to come out as sensitive and all that... but who just ends up sounding like a judgemental girl... with a penis!
Because c'mon!! 
"She frowns but is not deterred. You’d think she’d finally get a clue that I don’t find her remotely attractive. It’s not that she isn’t beautiful, she is. Stunning, if you like her type, but her pale skin and willow—that’s what they call model skinny girls—willowy frame isn’t what I crave. I want a girl with meat on her bones. Okay, I’m only obsessed over one girl’s curves,(..)"
And then there's the fact that he's a ladies man (is this the male equivalent of slut? Because this sounds so much better!),  but who gets tongue tied in the presence of one special girl... whom he apparently has been stalking for some time now... but of course in a non threatening way *pulls hair*.

Glaring Mistake #1: Stop making these obsessive/insane characters feasible love interests!
You know what ends up happening to women who get involved with guys like these?
Most of them end up dead.

I could go on and on about all the things that should make all girls run the other way when a guy like Landry appears. Yes, there are plenty of them, but you get the type right?

Spoiler!!! Landry's sister is found dead. The guy has just basically seen her corpse opened up in the autopsy room, and one minute later (fine, 2 minutes tops!! I am not kidding!)  the guy is already thinking about how wonderful and beautiful Mala is??
This is just wrong!
Doesn't he have feelings at all?? And I am not talking about those!
"God, she’s beautiful. I pluck a jasmine blossom from her hair and tuck it behind her ear. My heart stops beating for a few seconds when my fingers brush her earlobe. It’s soft, ah, silky. I stiffen my knees and focus on breathing in one slow breath at a time. If I dare touch her one more time, I’ll die, and she’ll have no idea she killed me."
Oh, my God...

And to say that he spend four days secluded in his apartment... drinking... and playing video games??
Video games?? Are you serious? (at least he didn't share his results on FB)
He could at least have been seeing some family movies with the sister in it... or something like that, it would probably help make him look a little more mature.

Okay, it's true that in the beginning on the book he claims that he's not the "sharpest tool in the shed" o_O but this does not excuse the idiocies he says. *shakes head*
"No wonder Dad wanted me to stop in to check on her. She’s not handling Lainey’s passing well after all."
Really Sherlock?? A mother isn't dealing well with her daughter's death?

On and on, this ends up being an overly dramatization of a southern soap opera!

  The author starts by having  a good grip on the story's pacing, _although, later on, the thing is just lost between all the hormones floating around_ but the characters and situations are so overly dramatized that this honestly become painful to read.

Glaring Mistake #2
I don't know about you guys, but I'm getting really tired of reading about girls in books that only know to call themselves names, and who only know how to fight one another over boys _as if they're starving dogs!_ and as if they have no pride whatsoever.
Girl on girl hate and slut shaming should just be forbidden in YA books.
"Clarice stands with her hands on her hips. “Seriously, Landry,” she yells. “You’re gonna ditch me for that slut?”
"I whirl in Landry’s arms, fed up. “I’m not the one begging like a bitch for a bone,” I say to her, shaking my head in disgust.
“Show some pride. He’s obviously not into you.”
I would like to be able to say that eventually the story gets better.
But I would be lying. In fact it only gets worse :/ and I so regret the time I wasted on this.

The writing style that, at the beginning, seemed so promising becomes so packed with clichés, and the sentences are so short and brisk, that instead of reading a book, it feels as if I'm listening to some crazy people talk. There's no fluidity, there's no nothing! Only dialogues thrown in like paint to the walls. Some hits, others don't...

Most of the characters behave as some sort of Tasmanian Devils on steroids! It's insane!
And draining to read!
As if all the drama, drama, drama wasn't high enough, we get human sacrifices and amnesiac characters _how soap operish is this?

And, as if all of this wasn't enough, the author also had to throw in a love triangle... because... who knows, not enough balls in the air?!
Or is this a New Adult pre-requisite? 

Honestly I just picked this up because due to same crazy assumptions I thought this would be something along the lines of Tami Hoag's books.
Next time my brain concocts such an idiocy I'm just going to re-read Tami Hoag's Cry Wolf or Between The Lines.
Now that's a dark, intense story!

p.s- Oh, and calling a character Georgie? Georgie?
What is she? Five years old? 

Buy (more like borrow it if you can) Dark Paradise:

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