I have a love/hate relationship with anything goth-emo-horror. I love to read it, but hate to be scared or creeped out. Terrify me and I resent you. But do nothing and I shall call you "bunny". See you can't win.
I remember The Island of Dr. Moreau movie when I was little. My older brothers were obsessed with it and kept it on repeat in the VCR. While I was usually around when it was playing, I can only remember snippets from covering my eyes. When I heard this was inspired by that, I knew the meat of the story but the potatoes were still foggy. So reading about the relationships of the characters in this novel was new and unmarred. Yet I doubted there was much that could get to me at my age.
So with much doubt, I embarked on reading this novel (at my own risk). It gave me waking nightmares! I can't get the twitching rabbit out of my head.....GAH! Even when I said bunny earlier I thought of the one in the book and it made my flesh crawl. Ewww. And yet I read this front to back with my morbid curiosity driving me. I couldn't stop turning the pages no matter how gross or eerie things got. The ending was more a relief... I felt as if I had escaped the island of Dr. Moreau. Nonetheless, this was an exciting journey.
The dynamics of the characters was complex. There was no definite evil person or saint. At times Juliet was as fragile as a lamb and others where she was as fired up as a wildcat. Dr. Moreau was no cookie cutter villain either. There was much to each character then first observations.
There were enough elements sure to captivate the adoration of every reader:
? religion cults
This was also way more mature than your average YA book. You will find yourself forgetting that the character is only sixteen.
This was definitely retro with an edge of creepy! The cover fooled me. It looks like one of those historical fictions with language that will put you to sleep long before the story line catches. But rest assured, the gore picks up right away. The narrator's solemn situation and peculiar circumstances keeps you turning. The romance was only dished in hints, then it was right back to crazyville. Insane & magnificent in it's freakiness!
Even in my dreams I can't escape the mental imagery of this novel which is why I have no choice but to rate it "EPIC"!
GOTHIC THRILLER, INDEED!
I could wax poetic on the many things I loved about this but I'll leave the rest for you to discover on your own.
I look forward to future novels this author has to offer.
*I received an ARC from the publisher for review and honest feedback.