Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Title: Beautiful Darkness (Caster Chronicles #2)

Author: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Publisher: Little Brown Books

Page Numbers: 503 hardcover

My Rating: 5/5 stars

Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he meets mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who reveals a secret world that has been hidden in plain sight all along. Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena’s family of powerful Supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Sometimes life-ending.

Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan’s eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there’s no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town’s tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems. (Summary, courtesy of

Today marks a sad yet happy day. Since everyone always likes the good news first, here it goes: I finished Beautiful Darkness today. What a thrilling novel. Margaret and Kami make up the Super-Author-Wonder-Team with this series. There was a roller-coaster of emotions throughout the whole novel. Perhaps one of the novels greatest qualities (besides the great characters, the fascinating imagery, and of course an all-around great story line) was that the book stayed interesting the whole time. Once I settled in bed for at night to start reading, I really couldn’t force myself to put this book down. Once one question would get answered in the book, twenty more would appear. The last page of the book leaves us with perhaps the biggest question of all; what is it that Ridley plans to do and how is it going to affect all Casters? I have nothing but positive things to say about this book. We watched as Ethan looses the love of his life, Lena, and then how he went to the ends of the world (literally) to protect her from her greatest enemy, herself. We also get to watch as Link’s character transforms into the hick-town best friend, to an almost-studdly knight in shining armor. To add to it, new characters are introduced that provide quite a bit of conflict in the book. Beautiful Darkness takes you through so many twists and turns, throws some unexpected curve balls, but in the end it makes for an excellent story.

And for the bad news: The next book doesn’t come out until fall of next year. That is going to be a long, hard year, full of anticipation. So there it is my first attempt at a book review. It’s nothing special, nothing formal; just my honest opinions on the book.

What my future beholds

Well I can tell you what my future definitely doesn’t behold, public speaking. I have a communications class every Wednesday night. Up until tonight, I have done relatively well, with an A grade on nearly every speech. Tonight was a different story. First off, the topic of this night’s speech was terrible. We had to choose a famous speech and then talk about the persuasion and propaganda used in that speech. How boring is that?! So of course I choose Sojourner Truth’s speech “Aint I A Woman.” I have always been quite fascinated with the Women’s Rights Movement and Black Freedom Movement, so it only seemed fitting to talk about a speech that dealt with both. It would have turned out great if my rambling mouth wouldn’t have gotten in the way. I screwed up within the first three seconds of the speech and it went downhill from there. The rest of the semester the speeches will continue to get harder, which means, I will do progressively worse. Luckily, the teacher thinks I am a “Public Speaking Prodigy,” well so I hope, even after tonight. Perhaps I would have been better prepared for my speech if I didn’t spend the whole evening reading Kami Garcia’s and Margaret Stohl’s, Beautiful Darkness. I was really up until 2 a.m. and I have a feeling I will be doing the same tonight. The book is simply marvelous so far. If I keep reading at the pace I’m going now, I will hopefully be done with it tomorrow night/Friday morning; just depending on how late I plan on staying up. After I’m done with Beautiful Darkness, I have the tough choice of Becca Fitzpatrick’s Hush Hush or Andrea Cremer’s Nightshade. What to do, what to do. Are there any suggestions on which one to read first, because as of right now I have heard that both are excellent?

As much as messing up a speech in front of the whole class sucks, work today was only worse. I spent the whole entire day cleaning the office. In case you didn’t know, that is 7 hours of cleaning. We have inspection tomorrow (to make sure we are up to standards) and it was my duty to dust, scrub, vacuum, and eventually get cleaning-product-fume-poisoning. To make matters worse we had an extremely late lunch today; I went from 8 until 3 without eating anything at all. Now if you knew me even in the slightest, you would know that I eat several very small portions throughout the day (and by that I mean I eat a snack literally every hour). So you could understand how famished I was to go a full seven hours without eating. Hmm, perhaps that means that I could blame my sub-par speech today on the fact that I breathed in way to many harmful chemicals.

Since I’m feeling a tad light headed, very hungry, and poorly under-studied for my two tests tomorrow; It might be in my best interest to get off the computer. Tootle-Lou blog world.

Happy Happy Halloween!

This is by far my favorite time of year. I love the fact of getting dressed up and for just one night you can be absolutely whoever you want. How exciting. (Not to mention, who can pass up free candy? Not me). This year I will be dressing up as Bat-Woman, not because I’m a huge fan, mostly because it was the least slutty costume I could find. Kati is going to be Robin in Da Hood. It is like a female Robin Hood with a ghetto flare, it’s hilarious. Anyways last week sure was a spook-fest. I went and saw Paranormal Activity 2 with Kati. The only question I have is “Were we under the influence of any drugs at all when we made the decision to attend this movie?” Well I assume so because it was so dang creepy. So let’s get this fact out there: I do not like scary things at all! The scariest movie I’ve seen has been Disturbia or the Stepfather. Most people label these movies as thrillers or mysteries, well not me! It really does not take a whole heck of a lot to freak me out.

Well a not-so-scary part of my past week was my book club meeting. I have to say it is like the highlight of my week every time we have a meeting. To just get together at Borders, get some delicious snacks (you must try the Carmel Apple Cider. By far the best tasting drink…ever), and talking about books, is so much fun. We all met up and then went to go find a spot to sit. Of course an open-mic night was taking place in the café area, so we headed on over to the book club table. And since me along with my aurora of bad luck was there, the table was covered in great gifts (no really, that is what the sign says they were). So we then had to kick a little boy, whom I’m almost positive had some sort of a social disorder, out of his spot in the very back of Borders. We sat, talked books, talked life, and even watched a Borders employee make a fool of himself. When I say there are some strange workers at Borders, I really am not kidding. As I was checking out, the cashier looked at my debit card (which has a picture of me on it…for security purposes!) all he does is looks up at me and says “you look happy in this picture. You look so excited to be getting a checking account.” How odd is that.

Since we were at Borders, I just had to get some books. First I got Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. This sequel to Beautiful Creatures follows the wonderful and mysterious lives of Ethan Wate and Lena Duchannes. It is the third book we are reading for our book club. I cannot wait to get further into the book.

Next I got Nightshade by Andrea Cremer. Just the book itself was beautiful enough to convince me to buy it. The cover is shimmery, the pages look worn and torn, but it just adds to the book. If the story is as beautiful and interesting as the book itself, it is sure to be fantastic!

And then to end off my shopping spree, I picked up Hush Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick. I have been waiting to pick up this book for forever; I just really wanted a paperback. To add to it, once I’m done with this book, I can go pick up Crescendo, the second book to the series!

So books weren’t the only things I purchased this week. After two years of suffering with a broken phone, I finally broke down and spent a whopping $300 on the Droid 2. Yes that is a ton of money for a struggling college student to drop on a phone, but really I needed a nice phone. It is by far the most confusing device I’ve ever held in my hands, but soon enough I will get the hang of it. Now off to do homework, as I stated earlier, I am a struggling college student

Here I am…

Here I am on a Sunday afternoon attempting to do my weekly homework. As you can probably guess, homework is not going so well since I am currently writing this blog instead of writing “The greatest profile ever written.” Now it doesn’t have to be the greatest profile ever, but I would like to have at least one good paper to turn into my English teacher. In my opinion, I think I am a relatively funny and amusing person, however, my 70 year –old-suffering-from-craziness-male English teacher doesn’t think so. I feel that I have written some pretty solid papers thus far, but it is quite possible he goes through three red pens every time he grades one of my papers. It is quite frustrating. Anyways, this week’s paper is supposed to be a profile on a person that has affected our life’s work. Needless to say, I have no idea where to even start this paper since the teacher really has hated every one of my other papers. When I think I’ve finally got a good attention getter, I think of what he is going to think of it, and then I try and come up with a different one. As you can probably guess, at this time I’m frustrated, confused, and down-right stuck.

To make this day just ohh so much better, I will be spending the evening with my mother and sister. So far, I don’t think I have gone into too much detail on either one of them so here it goes:

My mom and pops had my sister and I, got married, and then were divorced, within a two year span. At first we spent most the time with our mom, and a little bit of time with our dad. After a while though my mom would drop us off at my aunt’s or my grandma’s house and then leave us there for days. My dad then went and got custody of us. This is about the time everything went downhill. She would go out and drink all the time, call maybe once a week, and eventually got together with a jerk. They both lost their jobs, my mom lost her license, and eventually lost all of my respect. For the past couple years, contact with her has been extremely minimal. We would talk around holidays. That’s about it. However, the last two months she has been “getting her life back together,”  I think 45 is a little old to be doing that, but hey at least she is trying. Next is my sister.

Kari was really young when a lot of the big issues happened, and even when she was old enough to understand that my mom’s life was a mess, she refused to believe it. To this day she still thinks of my mom as an angle, and to be quite frank, it irritates me to no end. I feel like I grew up rather quickly so that I could be there for my sister, especially when my mom wasn’t. This is probably the reason she thinks “I am the most irritating person alive.” And yes, that is a direct quote. Kari forgave my mom so easily when she came crawling back to us a few months ago, me not so much. There has been a lot of tension between Kari and I the past couple weeks. To be honest, I am quite irritated with her myself. She thinks she is the only person with issues. Heck, if all I had to do was go to school and then cross country every day, I think I would be in heaven. She doesn’t have a job, no chores, basically no responsibility. So the fact that she takes no one else’s feelings into account really drives me nuts. When I expressed my feelings to Kari about this last week, she screamed at me, and then threatened to smack me. Since I don’t come from a particularly violent family, this absolutely shocked me. The girl needs some help.

So to make this extremely long story quite a bit longer, I am being forced to spend time with the two people who make me the angriest. My guess this evening is going to turn into some form of a natural disaster.

On the bright side of this weekend, Kati and I were able to hang out this weekend. Woo hoo! We rented Just Dance 2 (the best Wii game ever invented). It is so much fun, but extremely exhausting. I don’t do physical activity at all, so nonstop dancing was quite a work out. The next day we went to Bob Evans for some brunch. We know it is extremely lame for two young, fun teenagers to go to Bob Evans for entertainment, but hey they have some good food. After that we went and saw Life As We Know It. It was the cutest movie I’ve seen in a while! Well I do suppose I should attempt to turn in at least some form of a profile for English tomorrow; wish me luck!

Here it goes.


Since I made not one but two promises to blog more often, I am pulling out all of my extra energy to write this so here it goes (now the title makes sense!)

In the lovely world of books:

1) I have been an absolute reading machine the past couple weeks. This can mean a few different things. It is either one) I have so much free time and I just don’t know what to do with myself or two) I read to block out the constant cries from my schoolbooks that just keep shouting “Katelyn, you have a ton of homework to do!” Yeah I’m going with the latter.

2) Some awesome must read books that you really should check out if you had any common sense at all would be one)Forget You by Jennifer Echols. It was a really great story of a girl named Zoey, whose life happens to be falling apart. Her dad left her mom for a girl only 24 (that’s only 7 years older than the main character), her mom attempts suicide, and to top it off Zoey gets in a terrible car accident. Now this crazy trifecta wouldn’t be complete with a case of amnesia, two hot guys, and her twin best friends. Again I stress, YOU MUST READ IT! Two) I feel the need to stress yet again that Paranormalcy by Kiersten White is a must read. See previous posts for more details. Three) It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini. I know I have already talked about this book before, but I am bringing it up again for a very important reason. The movie came out last weekend. If you are a BTM cop (Book Turned to Movie) than you most likely won’t like it. The movie keeps a few main details of the book, but it adds in a lot of little extra things. I like the movie. I like the book. I am not so sure how I like the movie and book together though. Nevertheless, don’t let this stray you away from either seeing or reading Its Kind of a Funny Story. Like I said they are both very good.  Four) Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl is absolutely amazing! This book is about witches and thank god for it! I love fantasy books just as much as any normal teenage girl, but I am getting a little tired of vamps and werewolves. It is very nice to have a change of pace. I am not done with the book yet but I am sure it will be a new favorite. I’m reading it for our book club that way our next book we read together can be Beautiful Darkness, the second installment. Woo hoo can’t wait!

In the not so lovely world of life:

Well there is not a whole lot to put right now. A lot of irritating things have happened in the past couple days but I am still at the angry stage; I’m not able to write it in a funny/ amusing way yet. But soon enough there will be some funny/crazy/only-happens-to-me-moments to come. I promise!

Now off to my school books. They are practically screaming at me now!

Keeping Promises


Ok so I am sorry to say that I have not kept my promise of trying to blog more often. Since I have had zero views since my last post, I assume no one is too upset about this. I really am trying though. From now on I plan on blogging at least every other day…. no excuses.

To start off last week has been super crazy. Power outages, homecoming, family time, homework, college, work, chores, more homework, more college, and more work, and reading an unbelievable book, made for quite an interesting week.

My sister’s homecoming was last weekend. That meant being in the parade (4 bags of candy that only lasted about half of the parade cost me $20! how ridiculous is that), going to the football game, and catching up with friends I haven’t seen in a while. For like the first time in Clio history, it did not rain on homecoming night. It may have sprinkled a bit, but it did not rain. Also for the first time in Clio history, we scored the first two touchdowns. Clio is notoriously known for being the worst football team ever. Our victory was short-lived however; the final score being 42-14. The next morning I awoke to no power. This confused me to no end, especially since there was no rain! Nevertheless, my sister and I still needed to get ready for the night. I took her all the way to my grandmas, did her hair, do her makeup, take her pictures, take her back home, take more pictures, go pick up Kati (I don’t go very far without her), go to Kari’s friends for more pictures, go out to flint for dinner. It took us three tries to finally find a restaurant to eat. Dang Bob Evans in hopping on a Saturday night. I then took her to the dance, went home and waited, and finally picked her up.

My extremely busy weekend was just a glimpse of how my week would be. I feel like a chicken running around with its head cut off. I am literally going from one thing to another all day every day. I am finally getting used to my busy schedule though.

In between night classes and long days of work, I still found time to read Paranormalcy. It was absolutely amazing! It was such a refreshing fantasy book. It was so different than the normal “my boyfriend is a vampire. I love him but he wants to eat me. How could we ever be together blah blah blah?” This book put a whole new spin on fairies, werewolves, and vamps. I cannot wait for a sequel.

As for best news I’ve heard in a long time…. Cassandra Clare’s series The Mortal Instruments is being turned into a movie. There has been a lot of heresy circulating around but just recently Cassandra confirmed it herself. She wrote on her blog saying that the movie will be produced by Sony and directed by the same author as Easy A. She also hinted that Emma Stone (star of Easy A), would make a great Clary. As much as I like Emma as an actress, I am a little unsure of how she could portray a teenage (especially since Clary is only 15 and Emma is…well not exactly that young). Regardless of who will be playing who, I cannot wait for this movie.

So that is about it for today. I’m off to read yet another new book called Forget You by Jennifer Echols.