Beautiful Creatures, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
I realise that I am not the target demographic for this book, and there is a little part of me that thinks I should not be enjoying reading about vaguely magical teenagers falling in love with added angst. However, I don’t care. I thoroughly enjoyed Beautiful Creatures. I’ll admit, I saw the film first (and also enjoyed that, though I think my girlfriend was quite bored), so I knew what to expect.
No, it isn’t great literature, it’ll probably never be considered a classic, and yes there are a number of plot holes, problematic characterisations, deus ex machina and many other things people can find to mock Teen Fantasy. However, the prose is good and engaging, the pace keeps up right to the end, and even the too perfect characters are likeable and sympathetic. You just can’t help but root for Ethan and Lena to end up happy. There are subtle hints at things only to be revealed in future installments, which I would happily read at some point.
It was interesting keeping track of some of the differences made for the film. It’s easy to see why they made them, unlike some films (I’m looking at you strange shrunken head from Prisoner of Azkaban) they all made the story more streamlined and comprehensible within the timeframe of an already lengthy film.
As I say, it’s not perfect, and it’s not great literature, but it’s great fun for a couple of not-having-to-think-too-much afternoon’s worth of reading.