Beautiful Darkness

Danger: Spoilers ahead! If you haven’t read Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, stop what you’re doing, go immediately to your local library or bookstore, get that book, and read it. When you’ve finished, come back here to learn more about the sequel, Beautiful Darkness. Beautiful Darkness is not a stand-alone novel. You really need to read the first book for things to make sense. Warning over.

So, as you may have gathered from the oh-so-subtle warning above, I’ve just finished reading Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl.  Since I absolutely adored the first book, Beautiful Creatures, I was eager to read the sequel.  Unfortunately, life interfered (as it often does), and I didn’t get to read the book as quickly as I would have liked.  But I’m finished now, and I have to say that Beautiful Darkness took me on the same emotional roller coaster that its predecessor did.  I grew frustrated with the characters even as I was rooting for them, I was as confused as they were at times, and I never knew what was around the next corner (or on the next page, if you will).  Beautiful Darkness was, in every way, equally as wonderful as Beautiful Creatures, and I can hardly wait to see where the authors take us next.

In Beautiful Darkness, we continue the story of Ethan Wate and Lena Duchannes.  You may remember that Lena is a Caster (fancy word for “witch”), and Ethan is Mortal.  After the events that unfolded at the end of Beautiful Creatures, including the death of Lena’s Uncle Macon and the fact that Lena was not Claimed as either a Dark or Light Caster, things are more complicated than ever.  Lena does not know where she truly belongs, and Ethan does not know how, or if, he can help her.  Ethan knows that something is seriously wrong, and it has to be more than Lena’s sorrow over losing her beloved uncle.  Lena is withdrawing from him, and Ethan has no idea what he should do.

With the arrival of two newcomers in town, one Mortal and one a mysterious supernatural being, things become even more strained between Lena and Ethan.  It doesn’t help that Lena seems to be convinced that, upon her Seventeenth Moon, she will be Claimed as a Dark Caster.  In fact, she is seemingly embracing the darkness within her, and the whole of Gatlin is about to find out just how dark Lena can get.  Can Ethan somehow bring Lena back to the Light?  Can anyone?

As things go from bad to worse with Lena and Ethan, help arrives in forms that were not expected.  Unexpected dangers are also faced, but Ethan knows he must do everything in his power to save Lena from the darkness she is facing.  He knows that his Lena has not left him, no matter what appearances are.  She’s being influenced by something or someone.  The question is who?  And does Ethan or anyone helping him have the power to stop these Dark forces before Lena is lost forever?  Find out when you read Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl.

I really, really enjoyed this book, and I hope that you will, too.  After visiting the authors’ website, http://beautifulcreaturesthebook.com/, I discovered there will be at least two more books in this series, fittingly dubbed The Caster Chronicles.  Book three should be published in the fall of 2011, and book four should be out in the fall of 2012.  That’s a long wait to find out what will happen with Ethan, Lena, and the other characters I’ve come to know, but I know the books will be well worth the wait.

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