Received: ARC from publisher, via NetGalley
Pages read: 143 of 320
I started out strong with Darker Still, but then I lost steam. The pacing slowed to a crawl, and you know I have no tolerance for that. After taking a break for a few days I realized that I didn't want to pick it up again.
It was pretty much love at first sight for me when it came to Natalie. She has a great narrative voice, which comes through strongly in her diary entries (the whole book is told through Natalie's diary entries because Natalie is mute). She was snarky and had a lot of sass while still being super relatable.
I felt like I really got to know Natalie through her diary entries. I would love to invite her to my lunch table. But, as much as the narrative style worked well with this, I think it was a major factor in why I lost interest in the story.
Every event was told after the fact, and so I really didn't feel that burning desire to find out what would happen next. It was all very "meh, who cares?" for me.
The other reason was Denbury, the romantic lead. I know! I just...wasn't feeling him or their romance. It was insta-love and the whole thing bored me. I don't know anything about HIM outside of the fact that he's good looking and nice. Nice. How awful when that's the best word I can muster up.
The mystery started out interesting, but that didn't last long. I think it was a combination of too little information and too easy mystery.
There was too little information in that the framework of the world and magical elements seemed thin to me. I didn't feel like I was absorbed in the world or grounded in the magical rules. I knew so little that I couldn't even try to work through the problem on my own and that made me feel like a spectator instead of an involved reader.
The problem also seemed overly simple. I didn't get a sense of peril and I never worried that the bad guy would win in the end. The villain didn't interest me. The mystery didn't have any hurdles or complications. Instead, clues were easily found and quickly understood by Natalie and Co. This killed my interest.
When I think of this book I think a combination of "meh" and "nice" but obviously neither of those get my heart pounding. I don't feel much need to find out what happens next, so I guess I won't.
Have you read Darker Still? What were your thoughts? I hope you liked it more than I did!Tweet