Thursday, March 10, 2011

Review: Ascendant by Diana Peterfreund

Book Two in the Killer Unicorns Series and sequel to Rampant

Warning: The very synopsis of this book will spoil the events of Rampant. If you want to be surprised, stop reading. Don't say I never warned you...

    Now that Astrid is a hunter, she's got some other things to worry about. Like for instance: the Cloisters are flat broke; Giovanni is leaving Rome; Cory's powers are on the blink; Astrid's dreams are slowly dying and her future looking like an eternity in a nunnery; and Phil is trying to put Unicorns on the endangered species list. Then Astrid gets an opportunity to leave the Cloisters and take part in the scientific development of the Remedy. She leaps at the chance, quickly packing her bags and shipping out to France. But it's here that she begins questioning everything: her love for Giovanni, her loyalty to the Cloisters and the other hunters, but more importantly her duty as a hunter. Is Phil right? Should they be saving unicorns from the world and not the other way around?
    Generally, I hate sequels because they can never live up to the magic the first book brought to the table and the recapping of the first book is boring and annoying. Ascendant changed my mind about that. For me, it was better than its predecessor. It had more conflict, more excitement and more awesome overall. Shoot, this book probably had more awesome in one chapter than Rampant had in the first 200 pages! ....Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration...sorta. Astrid grows up a little, takes on a stronger role and realizes how much she's changed. Although there was a recap of everything that happened in the first book, it was bearable. There wasn't a just a chapter in which the whole first book was info-dumped on the reader and super boring. Instead, the recap was spread out across the book, events only mentioned when they were needed to tell the current story. There is still the worry about virginity, but it's to be expected and it's not so bad. There's so many other conflicts, the subject hardly has any stage time anyway.  I'm pretty sure I would recommend Rampant and say stick with it because it gets so much better.  
   The hardcover edition is 392 pages long, has 26 chapters and is young adult.
      Rating: 5 out of 5
Level of Romance: Less in this one than in the first, but still present and still playing a role in the storyline.

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