Monday, August 6, 2012

Redmeption Is At Hand...

Expected Publication: October 9th, 2012
Romeo Redeemed (Juliet Immortal # 2)
By: Stacey Jay
Delacorte Books for Young Readers
ISBN-13: 9780385740180

Seductive companion to the popular Juliet Immortal, in which former lovers—Romeo and Juliet—meet, not as true lovers, but truly as enemies.

Cursed to live out eternity in his rotted corpse, Romeo, known for his ruthless, cutthroat ways, is given the chance to redeem himself by traveling back in time to save the life of Ariel Dragland. Unbeknownst to her, Ariel is important to both the evil Mercenaries and the love-promoting Ambassadors and holds the fate of the world in her hands. Romeo must win her heart and make her believe in love, turning her away from her darker potential before his work is discovered by the Mercenaries. While his seduction begins as yet another lie, it soon becomes his only truth. Romeo vows to protect Ariel from harm, and do whatever it takes to win her heart and soul. But when Ariel is led to believe his love is a deception, she becomes vulnerable to Mercenary manipulation, and her own inner darkness may ultimately rip them apart.


  At the end of Juliet Immortal, Romeo Montague had been cursed by the Mercenaries for his betrayl of them to live out the rest of eternity in his rotted corpse.  Then Juliet's former Nurse, an Ambassador of light, comes and offers him a chance to redeem his soul.  All he has to do is make Ariel Dragland believe in true love - the catch is that he'll be inside the body of Dylan Stroud, a boy who made a cruel bet involving her virginity.  Oh yeah, plus he's only given three days.  In the last book Juliet used Ariel's body to carry out her mission, but this time it's the real Ariel, a girl who is broken and full of darkness.  Winning her heart is a job at first, but soon becomes a reality when Romeo starts to have feelings that he thought died with Juliet in Verona hundreds of years ago.  But will he be able to save them both from a major betrayl and the double-crossing intentions of both the Ambassadors AND the Mercenaries?  Why does the story of Romeo and Juliet not exist in this reality and what really happened to Juliet when she refused to become an Ambassador of Light?  This book was exciting for me, because I loved the premise of Juliet Immortal, but with the focus of the narrative on Juliet, I got sick of the gushy teenage girl treatment.  Plus, she never seemed to have as many dark corners in her soul as Romeo did.  He was interesting to me even then and I'm glad he got his own story.  That said, this book was nowhere near perfect.  I was dragged through so many different schemes, plots and double-crosses by Ariel, Romeo, the Nurse and the Friar that I could barely catch my breath or know who to cheer for.  Plus it made my insides roil that Juliet's supposed happy ending from the first book was taken away from her, leaving her to be virtually tortured and almost burned alive!  Romeo was a complex character, with some pretty interesting reasons for joining the Mercenaries in the first place and for his actions after that.  I loved his snarkiness and the sweet things he does for Ariel.  As a character, Ariel is somewhat lacking for me.  I always felt like she was playing ar being tortured.  Even with her ability to see the spirits of those who haven't moved on and her accident as a child, I felt like she had nowhere NEAR enough of a reason to be so dark and twisty inside.  Gemma was a one-dimensional as ever and I really thought there was no reason for her to be included in the narrative.  All she did was slow things down almost glacially where she was involved.  One of my favorite scenes was Romeo and Ariel shopping for dance clothes at Goodwill, but Gemma buts in and kind of spoils it for me.  I did enjoy the flashbacks to Verona in 1304 and I liked the split narrative, although I think I would have enjoyed just Romeo's perspective even more.  The ending was satisfying for me and leads me to believe there won't be more books in the series, which is a nice change nowadays.  I liked the intensity of the romance in this one, versus the almost sickly-sweetness in the first book.  The twist with the Nurse's real purpose and her connection to the Friar made it work out very well and added something to the story that was absolutely needed.  I was alternately mad, happy, laughing crying and smiling during this book.  The rollercoaster was the mark of a well-written story, but also leads to a deduction because of how upset the destruction of Juliet's original happy ending made me.  Overall a great book and highly recommended for fans of Juliet Immortal. 

VERDICT:  4/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via NetGalley. No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is October 9th, 2012.*

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