Monday, November 26, 2012

Undeadly - Review

Undeadly (The Reaper Diaries, # 1)

By: Michele Vail

Expected Publication: November 20th 2012 by Harlequin Teen

272 pages

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!!!)

( Goodreads | Amazon )

Goodreads description--The day I turned 16, my boyfriend-to-be died. I brought him back to life. Then things got a little weird...

Molly Bartolucci wants to blend in, date hottie Rick and keep her zombie-raising abilities on the down-low. Then the god Anubis chooses her to become a reaper-and she accidentally undoes the work of another reaper, Rath. Within days, she’s shipped off to the Nekyia Academy, an elite school that trains the best necromancers in the world. And her personal reaping tutor? Rath. Who seems to hate her guts.

Rath will be watching closely to be sure she completes her first assignment-reaping Rick, the boy who should have died. The boy she still wants to be with. To make matters worse, students at the academy start turning up catatonic, and accusations fly-against Molly. The only way out of this mess? To go through hell. Literally.

I had a hard time getting into Undeadly. I didn’t particularly enjoy the narration. Molly speaks in “today's” lingo which I don’t particular enjoy, using words like “whatevs” and “squee” (Where did this "squee" word come from? I’ve been seeing it pop up in several books lately and I HATE it! Someone please enlighten me!)—there are others, I’m just too lazy to search for them right now. Anyway. It’s a small peeve of mine when books use popular language of the day and when they name drop brands, TV shows, and such (which was also in Undeadly) because I feel like these books will never be considered classics. They will be forever dated. And with how fast things change (language, TV shows, technology, etc), this is just something that I don’t enjoy when it comes to reading. I’m sure there are some out there that love this. I do not. It’s a matter of opinion.

I guess I was probably 20-30% through the book by the time I got into it. Aside from the narration that was bothering me, there was a lot about the world building that I wasn’t thrilled about. Trying to keep the different gifts that necros have separate in my mind and remember what each one was turned out to be impossible. It was one of the things I just skipped over. Maybe a bit more repetition in the breakdown of what gift goes with which name would help the reader remember.

Also, there are plenty books out there where vampires are known and accepted in society, but I was having a harder time buying the rampant zombies and zombie making being so culturally acceptable. I didn’t dwell on that too much though. Keep in mind, these aren't crazy-eat-your-flesh-kind-of-zombies, though they will do that too. So if you're looking for a typical, post-apocalyptic zombie kind of book, this isn't it.

Once the story got going with Molly and Rick, I was much happier to move along at a better speed. And then Rath of course was an intriguing character. As I said in my review of The Raven Boys, I think Undeadly suffered from SOANS (Start of a New Series) syndrome. And also like I said with The Raven Boys, I usually enjoy the first book in a series very much, but this one had so much world building that needed establishing that it took away from the flow of the story some.

When I finished Undeadly, I was mildly interested in knowing what happens next, but I’m not 100% sure that I’ll follow through and read the others in the series once they release. I just can’t say for sure. I feel like once again this review has come off more negative then I intended it to. It’s just easier to point out the flaws when it’s a middle of the road read than the things you semi-liked. That being said, Undeadly gets 3 stars from me.

Have you read Undeadly? If so, what did you think? Let me know!


  1. I do not think I'll be reading this one, lol. I hate squee too, although whatevs is practically in the dictionary at this point.

  2. I hate leaving things so I'll probably end up reading the 2nd one. I'm really hope there'll be more story in the 2nd haha.
    (And I totally agree about it being easier to point out flaws when a book is just mediocre)

  3. I had problems with this too! It was hard to connect with any of the story really but the concept was interesting.
    As for "squee" I personally use it but I've been using it since I was in high school 5 years ago, but it's basically because I don't like making high pitched noises, so 'squee' suffices. I agree though it's really strange to see in a novel.

  4. I recently bought this after reading "Dearly, Departed" which is also a zombie book of sorts and I'm excited about this, I hopefully will enjoy it!

    I entered your recent give away "romance in the air!"