by Hannah Lamberg
Open your eyes to a world, one that seems bleak and simple, yet is so complex under its façade. This supposedly insignificant Southern Carolina town, Gatlin, is the home of the novel, Beautiful Creatures, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Young Ethan Wate only wants to leave Gatlin, to go to college as far away from Gatlin as possible, until the arrival of the mysterious Lena Duchannes. With one girl turning Gatlin into a small town with very thick walls filled with secrets, this novel is a must read! I really enjoyed the Southern spin of the setting and the tie with the Civil War, or the “War of Northern Aggression” as the South refers to it. Also, the gothic nature of the book was fabulous. Castors, or witches, and their mystic spells and powers create a fanatical and dark story as it is tied to the Southern roots of Gatlin County. I honestly have not read any supernatural books about castors before, only vampires and werewolves; however, this book was something that I could not put down. Whether it be the intense romance between Ethan and Lena, the fate of Lena on her birthday, or the simple description of the mortal world and the castor world blending, I was always enthralled while reading this novel. I have always loved sinking my teeth in dystopian books, but then I decided to try a few supernatural series. After reading Beautiful Creatures, I am now much more compelled to read more in the supernatural genre. There are many books revolving around vampires and werewolves, so this was a sweet treat to read. I feel that this one is different. Simply the mix of a realistic setting makes this book so much more interesting since the actual storyline is the opposite of expected. Furthermore, the reader is given the opportunity to view a dull, Southern town morph into a place with a tad more action and history once Lena Duchannes appears. I stormed through this book within a week, despite the long page count (about 507). Despite the quick read-like quality of the novel, I still felt as if I lived in the dark world of Ethan and Lena from the moment I began reading the first page until my eyes scanned over the final word. This is a must read work that I would strongly recommend for your next supernatural read! Want to discover a world that is filled with the unknown? Then, grab this book, and read, read, read!!!!!