Monday, January 16, 2012

Review: Jessica Rules the Dark Side

Title: Jessica Rules the Dark Side
Author: Beth Fantaskey
Pages: 309
Format: Print/ Hard Covered
Published: January 10th 2012
Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
This was purchased by me

Just FYI, this will be a split concept type review. First I`ll talk about some characters, plot, setting, writing, etc. I can write a more organized review this way.

Finally after waiting well over three years, Jessica Rules the Dark Side has been published, read, and analysed. I can't tell you how excited I was when I heard Beth would be making a companion novel to, Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side. Jessica's Guide was funny, witty, fast paced, and overall just a really great book to read if you're ever in a reading slump. Did Jessica Rules disappoint? Ermm, maybe a little.

Jessica's Guide ends with Jessica and Lucius being eternity linked together forever. You guessed it, Jessica became a vampire. *Oops,  that tidbit of information was a spoiler.* And then, Jessica Rules starts basically where we left off. If you read Jessica's and Lucius' wedding online, let me know how it was. I can't do it because I refuse to stare at a computer screen. Anyways, so in Jessica Rules, well the title kind of says it all, she rules along side Lucius. However, here's where it gets interesting, Lucius is accused of murder, and so he's arrested, without blood- which can mean limbo (worse, actually) to a vampire- and Jessica must find who and why he was framed. So she goes on this big thing of thinking little of herself to becoming a massive, kick-ass, vampire hero.

Let's first talk about Jessica (Anastasia):
A slow start with her. She was annoying, weak, and wasn't the girl I looked up to in Jessica's Guide. In the first book I admired her so much. She was my ultimate book character idol. She didn't care that she was a size 10, she stood up for herself, and was totally amazing! In this one she's weak, helpless, and just down right disappointing. I was hoping for a stronger, kick-ass vampire girl, especially because she is now a Princess. Alas, this is not the case. However, towards the end we see many changes in Jessica that I am quite happy with and of which made her my idol again. I just wish she wasn't such a wimp to begin with. Otherwise, I suppose her turn-about in the ending makes up for everything.

Next up, Lucius:
Lets just say Lucius can bite me anytime. Actually no, he can`t. He has Jessica, but seriously, he`s still the same old Lucky we feel in love with in Jessica`s Guide. Gah, his dialogue and character and humor is just priceless. He`s the apple to my eye, or rather, apple to this book. He`s the most romantic, kick-ass, superior, smart-ass, smart, hot Prince you`ll ever read about. *Sigh* I wish I were a Princess so I could have him. You know, my great, great, great, grandmother was a Princess. No word of a lie. She lost her crown because she married a foot soldier. True story, you know. So yes, I have royal blood in me, so to speak. (Sorry for the anecdote reference, I just thought it kind of fit.)

Next, the plot:
Interesting, not entirely fast paced, but could be at times. I must say, the people who framed Lucius were right out obvious to begin with. You had to be a monkey not to have guessed it right away. Ouhh, ouhh, ahh, ahh! I definitely think Beth could have taken this plot to places beyond where she took it. She could have used the wonderful stylistic device called allusion to inform us about this whole vampire business. Truthfully, you don`t get much insight on vampire history, and personally, I wish she did. The best part about this book was the ending. Shut the... front door. No, not because it ended, but because that was when it got so interesting I stayed up late on  a school night to finish it.

I loved living in the castle while reading this book. I was able to forget my purple themed room for a few hours and live in Jessica`s kingdom. Hard-core awesomeness, dude! Imagery would have been perfect here but Beth lacked in this. I could only vaguely visualize the castle because she was so stingy on what she wrote about it. I know that the main aspect of this book was Jessica and Lucius and finding the killer, but still, a little imagery would`ve been nice. Otherwise, I used my imagination and the bit Beth did describe and pretended to walk the halls of Jessica`s and Lucius`castle.

I guess my preference on the needed use of allusion would fit here, but I already talked about this, so I`ll instead just talk about the writing writing, not the devices or themes within it. As always, I loved Beth`s writing. She has the true voice of a writer that I enjoy reading. Although, when it came to be Mindy`s POV (Jessica`s friend) I was in complete contradiction about Beth`s writing. Uh, did you have to use 'like' like all the time? It was seriously distracting and annoying. Although, I did notice that Mindy talked less and less frequently like this towards the end. So yeah, the last hundred pages were the best part about this book for me.

That's all I got for you today on this book. I'd definitely check this out if you've read Jessica's Guide because I think it'd be nice to have that closure to Jessica and Lucius' story.

My rating:
5 pointy stakes!
(Why? Because I just can't get over that ending. It made me happy and feel closure. That's why.)


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