Young Adult – Sweet Venom

Grace is excited to move to San Francisco, but a little nervous at the same time. It doesn’t help that she’s suddenly seeing terribly monsters everywhere. Monsters that no one else seems to notice, until the day another girl appears, chasing the monster – a girl who just happens to look exactly like her. Grace always knew she was adopted, but now she’s not just an identical twin, but a descendant of the Gorgons, destined to fight mythical monsters?

This was a quick, eventful read, a solid book without being stellar. While the attitudes of the girls are completely different, and what let me tell them apart, their voices were a tad too similar. Bumped also features identical-twins-separated-at-birth with both girls giving us their first person narrative, but in that book the girls had distinct speaking styles, whereas here they did not.

The general idea – descendants of the Gorgons fighting monsters – was good, if not terribly inspired. I think my general inability to muster up any true enthusiasm has to do with a trend I’ve been seeing in a lot of YA books lately: the desire to create an entire series waters down each individual book. I think this book should have been merged with its sequel to create a stronger work. Nothing really happens here, it’s all set up for the next book in the series, filled with foreshadowing and several obvious attempts to set up the characters for action-packed adventure later on, but with no real payoffs in this installment other than the girls meeting one another.

That being said, it’s still a fun read, and the second in the series will no doubt have legions of fans eagerly awaiting its release.

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