AUTHOR: Chloe Neill
SERIES: Dark Elite #2
PAGES: 224 (Paperback)
To be honest, the main problem with this book is a lack of...just, anything. With more work and motivation she really could have made it an exciting read, but it just fell a bit short. I think this picture describe it well enough:
I think the author was using this book as a set up for the rest, but really, at least try to make it interesting, come on.
So basically Hexbound starts off about a week after Firespell, Lily is a member of the Adepts and everything is peachy. But then one night they go into the tunnels and find, to their horror, small creatures moving at, and this is the scary part about a metre an hour!, shocking, i know.
Now, of course, Lily and her friends are petrified as they should be, but then they remember they have, oh yeah, MAGIC.
So they deal with the creature thingies, and then find that the vamps are having a massive turf war and that some of them are going missing. Add that to finding a secret 'clinic' and the head reaper flirting with the heroine and you have yourself a Hexbound.
I will say, i liked the relationship between Scout and Lily, they have the easy going sarcasm and conversations that i share with my lucky friends. It's surprisingly real, and gives the story a lighter feel in some moments, which make it feel less hopeless.
On the subject of relationships though, Jason and Lily's was just...empty. There was no real development, not even a cliched 'oh, it's the first time i've seen you but now we're madly in love!' theme.
And then of course he had to go on at the end and say that, which made him a bit of a douchebag in my mind. Michael and Scout's was also sadly lacking some enthusiasm, leaving me with hope that Ms. Neill with at least have a go at giving it some depth.
Right...time to drag up the positives...well, it is obvious that the author knows and loves Chicago intimately, and her settings are as vivadly real in my mind as any other book's. She manages to capture the mood nicely in her descriptions, allowing the right emotions to be instigated in each chapter. Lily herself is not the worst heroine whose mind i have delved into, she's sensible, and has a youthful voice that some writers have trouble capturing. I likes how Ms. Neill kept her morales on the right path, not allowing her to be swayed by Sebastian to 'the dark side' as some other books do and keep her on the straight and narrow.
Overall, this was a quick read that will not be put on my re-read shelf. If you like fantasy books with a bit of action, mystery, romance, and stereotypical 'populars', then this is the book for you. However, don't beat yourself up trying to buy a copy, if there's one at your local library though, i'd give it go.