Monday, January 12, 2015

The Comeback Kid

Expected Publication:  February 17th, 2015
The Return (Titan #1)
By: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Spencer Hill Press
ISBN-13:  9781939392626

The Fates are cackling their bony asses off...

It's been a year since Seth made a deal with the gods that pledged his life to them.  And so far, the jobs they've given him have been violent and bloody - which is kind of all right with him.  But now Apollo has something else in mind for Seth.  He's got to play protector while keeping his hands and fingers off, and for someone who really has a problem with restraint, this new assignment might be the most challenging yet.

Josie has no idea what this crazy hot guy's deal might be, but it's a good bet that his arrival means the new life she started after leaving home about to be thrown in an Olympian-sized blender turned up to puree.  Either Josie is going insane or a nightmare straight out of ancient myth is gunning for her.

But it might be the unlikely attraction simmering between her and the golden-eyed, secret-keeping Seth that may prove to be the most dangerous thing of all.

Because history has once again been flipped to repeat.


       I was really kind of disappointed by how much I didn't love this one.  Not to say that I love EVERY book that JLA writes, but the good majority of hers that I've read have been four or five stars for me - pure enjoyment.  I kind of feel really bad about even reading it, cause once I realized it was a sister series to her Covenant books (which I have no interest in reading), I knew I wasn't going to be gushing about it's wonderfulness.  The funny part is, I liked Seth well enough.  I think that surprised me, but Jennifer definitely knows how to write a misunderstood, bad-boy hero sympathetically.  It's kind of a trademark of hers at this point (in a good way).  I even liked the way the story was going, with his mystery mission from Apollo and the whole "Titans on the loose" thing.  It was shaping up to be a great read, especially as I'm a mythology nut.  Then some things started to fizzle for me, until this turned into a mediocre experience.
       The first thing I didn't love was Josie, the heroine of the story, who is "special" and must be protected at all costs - the world depends on it!  Yup, felt really "speshul snowflake" to me and unfortunately for her, she reminded me of a slightly more competent Bella Swan.  Especially considering the fact of the insta-attraction/bordering-on-love that her and Seth share for each other.  Yes Seth, I get it.  You think she's hot, innocent and so much better than you.  Guess what: you've known her like two days.  Josie got on my nerves with how easily she accepted everything that was happening to her (I won't say exactly what her circumstances are so as not to spoil anything); girl, kick and scream!  Question "authority," even if that so-called authority (that you just met, btdubs) is a VERY hot guy that you want to get it on with!  Don't take everything at face value!  Even when some big, very grief-inducing and life-changing stuff happens later in the book, she STILL acts like its all okay.  There's autopilot and denial modes, but this came off to me as robotic and over it way too soon.  Didn't make me like her any better.  
       The double point of view didn't help either.  The plot was very slow moving, and the two of them spent most of them time trying NOT to jump each other's bones,while thinking about it 24/7.  Josie's thoughts were really shallow and I kept wishing JLA would pick a POV and stick with it (just Seth would have made more sense, because he IS the established character from the last series).  Also, the comparisons everyone makes between Josie and the girl from the Covenant series (Seth's unrequited love, Alexandra) got annoying.  Supposedly this can be read as a stand-alone, but I wouldn't attempt it.  Yes, you'll be able to understand the plot (what little there seems to be) but the allusions to past events might frustrate the un-indoctrinated reader.  Overall, not fun for me personally.  I think fans of the first series will enjoy it though, as it seems to be mostly written for them.  To me it was poorly written, with an annoying heroine and the plot moved glacially until almost the end of the book when it was setting up for the next one.  Honestly, it reminded me of a New Adult version of Twilight, mixed with Vampire Academy.  

VERDICT:  2.5/5  Stars (Most of this is for easy readability and Seth, who I really liked)

**I reviewed this book as part of Around the World ARC Tours, run by the lovely Princess Bookie.  No money or favors were exchanged for this review.  This book's expected publication date is February 17th, 2015.**

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