Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon
Publication Date: May 1st 2011
Publisher: Usborne Publishing Ltd
Paperback, 512 pages
Buy via Book Depository
At Gottfried Academy, just one kiss will take your breath away. After Renee discovers her parents dead in what appears to be a strange double murder, she is sent to Gottfried Academy, a remote and mysterious high school dedicated to philosophy, 'crude sciences', and Latin: the Language of the Dead. Here she meets Dante, a dark and elusive student who harbors a deadly secret, but to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. Despite himself, Dante cannot control his attraction to Renee either and their desires gradually deepen into a complex and dangerous romance. But Dante's not the only one with secrets...Gottfried Academy has a few of its own. When Renee begins to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a former student, she begins to realize just how deadly these secrets are...Dark romance meets haunting murder mystery in this captivating tale of love, death and destiny.
I really,really enjoyed reading Dead Beautiful!I practically devoured it and yes,in this book's case,a beautiful cover comes along with a beautiful story!
First of all,what I liked most was the writing style!Full of beautiful images and sceneries and lyrical that could practicaly make you "travel" to the world Yvonne Woon created!
The characters were well developed,substancial and their actions weren't rushed to reveal anything,what was to be revealed,it was in the right moment under the right circumstances.At last,I got a book in my hands,were I could actually not guess immediately what kind of power Renee possesed or what kind of paranormal creatures she was dealing with.Yvonne Woon crafted her story in such a way,were the element of mystery and surprise was well preserved and well handled!
I really liked Renee as a character,As I said,the characters were well developed and as such,I could relate to Renee and sympathise with her.Same goes with Dante.
On the plus side,the romantic side of the story was again, well developed,with an even pace,with no premature declarations of undying love,so that the reader could "see" the romance between the main characters gradually developing.
I only have two drawbacks to mention.
One,is that, at least (and hopefully only) in the beggining of the story, the circumstances under Renee and Dante met and some of their dialogues reminded me quite a lot of Twilight.It didn't spoil the fun of the book surely,but I really believed that they could easily be avoided.
The other is that by the ending,I found the whole universe a bit complicated and couldn't actually understand some things (can't really state them right now cause that would be a huge spoiler).I mean,from the explanations given,I couldn't understand why certain things were allowed to happen amidst a so strict environment.Anyway,those things might pretty well get explained in the sequel that's soon coming and I'm eagerly awaiting to read!