Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Review: Croak by Gina Damico

Croak (Croak, #1)Title: Croak
Author: Gina Damico
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication Date: March 20, 2012
Pages: 311
Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy
Source: Kindle ARC copy

Goodreads Summary:

Sixteen-year-old Lex Bartleby has sucker-punched her last classmate. Fed up with her punkish, wild behavior, her parents ship her off to upstate New York to live with her Uncle Mort for the summer, hoping that a few months of dirty farm work will whip her back into shape. But Uncle Mort’s true occupation is much dirtier than that of shoveling manure.

He’s a Grim Reaper. And he’s going to teach her the family business.

Lex quickly assimilates into the peculiar world of Croak, a town populated entirely by reapers who deliver souls from this life to the next. Along with her infuriating yet intriguing partner Driggs and a rockstar crew of fellow Grim apprentices, Lex is soon zapping her Targets like a natural born Killer.

Yet her innate ability morphs into an unchecked desire for justice—or is it vengeance?—whenever she’s forced to Kill a murder victim, craving to stop the attackers before they can strike again. So when people start to die—that is, people who aren’t supposed to be dying, people who have committed grievous crimes against the innocent—Lex’s curiosity is piqued. Her obsession grows as the bodies pile up, and a troubling question begins to swirl through her mind: if she succeeds in tracking down the murderer, will she stop the carnage—or will she ditch Croak and join in?


I read the premise of this book and was immediately intrigued. It sounded like a refreshingly different book compared to the “what’s in at the moment” books out there. I love to read those really good books, but I find it encouraging to see something new coming to the shelves of my bookstore. I requested the ARC Kindle copy from Netgalley.com and dove into the book first chance I had.

From the beginning I found the book entertaining. It starts off with a rebellious teenager who has no idea why she is acting the way she is. Up to this moment in her life she had been a prized daughter doing what was expected of her. Well this sounded good, where is this going?
I knew from the premise, the book was about her moving to her Uncles and learning that Grim Reapers exist. Simple enough, I thought. There are only so many things that can be done with Grim Reapers. The author did an amazing job on explaining how everything worked in Croak, and she detailed everything with great imagination. From the way the Grims find the dead, what the Grims do with the souls they have collected, to what happens to the tourist that find the little town by accident.

The characters were very inviting. All the characters seemed strong and stubborn in their own way. Some were chirpy, some were sulky, and some were just crazy. The main character, Lex, did go through some major changing in her behavior and it was really great to see her understand the importance of the Grim Reapers and why she was behaving in such a Hellish way. Something in her life finally became important and with a purpose. She has not been close to anyone but her sister for quite some time and it was good to see her actually build some strong relationships. The other main characters, Uncle Mort and her partner Driggs were just icing on the cake. Uncle Mort is crazy and wild but caring, sincere, and trusting. He knows how to have fun and do his job at the same time. He brings a new level of entertainment to the books. Driggs is also amazing. He is real competition in the attitude department for Lex. Their banter throughout the entire book kept me laughing out loud.

For a book about death and Grim Reapers, the author had a way to keep light in many of the situations. It took a while to get to the heart of the problem in the book and I thought I would see it coming, the who and why. But even when there were subtle hints, I brushed them off because it did not seem likely. So in the end…. I was like “oh that makes sense, and duh!”

The book has closure somewhat at the end but leaves it open for the next installment, which I will be anticipating reading.


1 comment:

  1. I'm putting this on my to read and buy list. It looks absolutely amazing!! There's no other way to put it. It's a one of a kind premise in today's world of copycats.


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