Saturday, March 22, 2014

Review: Half Bad by Sally Green

Half Bad (Half Life, #1)Title: Half Bad 
Author: Sally Green
Publisher:  Viking Juvenile
Publishing Date: March 4th 2014
Pages: 416
Genre:  YA Contemporary Fantasy
Series: Half Life Trilogy
Source: Audio


Half Bad by Sally Green is a breathtaking debut novel about one boy's struggle for survival in a hidden society of witches.
You can't read, can't write, but you heal fast, even for a witch.
You get sick if you stay indoors after dark.
You hate White Witches but love Annalise, who is one.
You've been kept in a cage since you were fourteen.
All you've got to do is escape and find Mercury, the Black Witch who eats boys. And do that before your seventeenth birthday.

I knew I wanted to read this book from the moment I discovered the book. I was even more excited when I found it was coming out on audio. I thought it sounded perfect for audio, and it was. It was quite a compelling read, thrilling, dark, and intense. Great character development and very beautiful writing. I couldn't put the book down. 

Nathan is a half witch, half white and half black. White is supposed good and black is supposed bad. The council is run by white witches. They have imprisoned Nathan in a cage.... he is considered dangerous because he is half black.....This story is the story of Nathan's journey growing up persecuted for being half black witch and having a very evil father. This is the story of Nathan coming to terms with who he is and who he is meant to be. This is a story about nature vs nurture and about free will vs fate. This is a story about Nathan and his choices. 

I loved this book. I felt the book was very well written. From the very beginning it was intense and very addicting. I was hooked from the very first page and I just knew that this book would be one crazy ride. It was. There were just a couple parts where I felt the story lag just a tad, but it didn't take long to pick back up and continue on as a raging page turner. The story had a bunch of background and setting details. It added so much to the story. In the start of the book the reader is thrown back and forth from past and present but a ton of explanations are being thrown into to build the story. I was able to relate with Nathan to the extremes because of these flashbacks. I was able to follow his story from birth.... through childhood... into teen years. These were done is flashbacks before he was caged. This was half of the book. The second half was the continuation of his story in the present. This part of the story was mainly a thriller, fast paced. Not much of character building left at this point... just Nathans choices. I was very impressed how everything ran together so smoothly. There are many books that attempt the flashbacks or swapping back and forth between past and present. Not all of them accomplish such a smooth transition and I think it added so much to the reading experience. 

As I mentioned, tons of development done through out the beginning of the story and this enabled me to care deeply for Nathan. Nathan was a survivor, a fighter, determined, and strong. He was a great male main character. I find it difficult to love male main characters, I loved Nathan. Everyone believed Nathan was destined to be evil, like his father. Nathan questioned it himself, but he continued to believe he had a choice. He walked the line between morals.. good and bad. I enjoyed watching him journey through the struggle. I believe he is good.... it's still undetermined. 

There were other memorable characters. Many that helped or hindered Nathan and many Nathan met through out his journey. Each one causing a choice to be made, each one with motive all their own. There were many supporting characters, and they were all wonderful, very well developed, but really Nathan was the star of the story. 

This book really dove into good vs evil, nature vs. nurture. It was done well and no one was either good or bad. Everyone had choices, and sometimes the choices were not easy and many times the situation determined the choice made. I think this is more true to life than always good always bad. It was a bit on the dark side but I enjoyed every moment of the story. 

Another wonderful book for my personal library. Can't wait to continue the trilogy. 

Photo of Sally Green

Hi - I'm Sally Green, author of Half Bad. It's my first book - and the first in a series of three, to be published by Penguin in March 2014.
I've had a whirlwind 2013, submitting Half Bad to an agent in January (and getting an agent - the wonderful Claire) and then agreeing a deal with Puffin (UK) and Viking (USA) in March. In April I agreed a film deal with Fox 2000 with Karen Rosenfelt as producer (google her!). Since then Half Bad has been sold to more countries, and I've been busy editing Half Bad and have started work on the second book of the trilogy.

I live in north-west England. I love to read, walk in the country and would like to drink less coffee (but I know it's impossible - I'm an addict)!
My online world will be based at from November 2013 onwards, but until then, you can find me and Half Bad on Wattpad.
Follow me on twitter@sa11eGreen

1 comment:

  1. I have a copy of this and now I can't wait to get to it! It sounds like a really fun read and I am looking forward to it. Thanks for the review :)


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