Did You Know This Book Exists? (DYKTBE?) is a reoccurring feature on The Lit Express. The purpose is to connect readers with books they may not have known existed prior to Lady Mystery's review. Lady Mystery goes to her local bookstore and chooses a book at random. Read more about this feature here.
Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon
Summary from Goodreads: After Renee Winters discovers her parents lying dead in California’s Redwood Forest in what appears to be a strange double murder, her grandfather sends her off to Gottfried Academy in Maine, a remote and mysterious high school dedicated to philosophy, “crude sciences,” and Latin: the Language of the Dead. It’s here she meets Dante, a dark and elusive student to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. As they get to know each other better, Dante can’t seem to control his attraction either, and their desires gradually deepen into a complex and dangerous romance. Read more of the summary here.
Lady Mystery's Review
Genre: Young Adult; paranormal romance
The Cover: Beautiful art design, and the dust jacket is smooth to the touch (I do not like to rough up my finger tips with a grainy dust jacket, thank you very much).
The Blurb: The description on the back of Dead Beautiful is written in first person. I do not mind this, but I know others (like my esteemed colleagues at Oxford, though I doubt said colleagues will wander to YA section) who might. The description of the plot isn't on the back but on the inside flaps. Essentially, regrettably, all it says on the back is our (nameless) character's parents are dead, and she is sent away to Gottfried Academy where mysterious things happen. Sometimes the back of the book is all I read when deciding whether or not to purchase it.
Prologue/First Page: The prologue is vague but very interesting. First page: tone pulled me in immediately.
Overall Score: 4 points. (5 for cover design, 2 for blurb on back, 5 for opening pages=average of 4) If I choose to read it, I predict a review score of 4 stars on a five star scale.
Deal Breaker or Deal Maker: Picking up this book at random has led to an interest in purchasing it. I must read online community reviews before I make my final choice. At the moment, I lean toward Deal Maker. Although the back of the book does not grab my interest, I thought the writing style in the prologue and first page shows promise. We shall see what we shall see. Anon.