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Balthazar (Evernight)

New or Used: 7 copies from $15.95
New or Used: 7 copies from $15.95

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Gr 8 Up-Minor characters from Gray's "Evernight" novels (HarperCollins) take center stage here. Skye, a human teen with psychic ability, and Balthazar, her vampire inamorato, endeavor to thwart the evil vampire Redgrave and his minions as they try to exploit Skye's powers. The story never takes wing, though, courtesy of its Potemkin construct. As a main character, Skye does little. Her psychic ability is not useful-she sees how people are going to die but cannot do anything about it. Her function is that of being someone Balthazar can swoop down on and rescue from various dangers: lone walks in snowy woods, lone walks home from school, and fainting spells. Her parents, grieving over the loss of their son, are rarely home. Skye's solitude makes her more vulnerable to evil vampires and more in need of Balthazar's protection. When she does have a talk with her parents, they remain unbelievably committed to their work and grief, thus allowing a convenient, if implausible, out for Skye. She can run off with Balthazar without feeling guilty about leaving them. In addition, the attitude about sex is permissive to the point of being reprehensible. Charity, a 14-year-old vampire, is Redgrave's lover. This detail does nothing to move the story along. Readers know already that he is evil, so this relationship seems gratuitous.-Jennifer Prince, Buncombe County Public Library, NC (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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