Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Review: Need by Carrie Jones

Title: Need
Author: Carrie Jones
Series: Need #1
Pages: 306
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Genre: Paranormal YA
Source: Library

Goodreads Description:
Zara White suspects there's a freaky guy semi-stalking her. She's also obsessed with phobias. And it's true, she hasn't exactly been herself since her stepfather died. But exiling her to shivery Maine to live with her grandmother? That seems a bit extreme. The move is supposed to help her stay sane...but Zara's pretty sure her mom just can't deal with her right now.She couldn't be more wrong. Turns out the semi-stalker is not a figment of Zara's overactive imagination. In fact, he's still following her, leaving behind an eerie trail of gold dust. There's something not right - not human - in this sleepy Maine town, and all signs point to Zara.

My Review:
Urgh...I don't quite know where to begin on this book. I don't like writing reviews that bash the novels, but to be perfectly honest...I have never felt like something wasted my time more than Need. There were a few redeeming qualities, but overall, I can barely remember what I read. It was the most unoriginal, unbelievable, cheesy book that I have read in months. I feel bad for saying this because perhaps it isn't what the author intended, but it really feels like she was just capitalizing on the surge of paranormal YA love that's been going on lately. This world, these characters, all have absolutely no life. I love it when an author's world spills onto the page and takes a life of its own, but these characters left me cold and irritated. They are cookie cutter pieces that when forced together make a YA novel that looks interesting enough(I really did like the cover), but is just a way to make money. It was Twilight, on the other side of the country, with pixies instead of vampires, and lacking in any form of plot or character depth.

Things I liked:

  1. The quirkiness of Zara's phobia naming was pretty interesting. I liked seeing how the phobias applied to each chapter, and it gave Zara the semblance of a personality.
  2. The dialogue between Gran and Zara. Gran was my favorite character. She was the only one who had a personality, even if it was slightly cliché. She jokes with her grand daughter, creeped on her grand daughter, and pretty much single-handedly dominated in the sarcasm department. I loved her. I wish my grandma was just like her.
  3. The concept of the pixies. I love the fey, and everything fey related. I liked that Jones created a history that included fey, weres, elves, etc. By having an actual history to look back on, it makes the present day characters seem much more realistic.
Things that didn't work for me:

  1.  When Zara arrives in Maine, she walks into school and makes friends and enemies on the spot. Literally, she walks into the office and the pretty popular blonde girl sitting there looks at her scathingly and decides that she hates her immediately. Then the hot over-achiever guy takes her to class and wants to be best friends. Um...why? Even the mean girls in my high school needed a reason to hate someone...they didn't just pick a random person on the spot to despise...There was no reason for the hate, no reason for the love, and the friends she made are such carbon copies of the cliché group of high school friends that its pathetic. 
  2.  When said unoriginal friends find out that Zara is being stalked, they rush to the internet where they google stalkers, and guess what? They decide that the stalker has to be a pixie. And Zara's all " What? OMG? No Way?! Ok then, Pixies it is!!" Then they throw in weres for good measure and all decide to believe in them too. The fact that these kids just randomly pick up some book in the library and articles on the internet and then they magically believe in pixies was so laughable, I almost put the book down right there. SO unrealistic. There is no evidence, no pixie or were friends that demonstrate the paranormal, nothing...and they still believe? That’s like me finding out someone stole my mail and deciding that it MUST have been the elves and dwarves that did it...totally unbelievable. Which brings me to my next point.
  3. So we find out later in the book that the Pixie King wants Zara's mom as his queen, and that she ran away from him so that she wouldn't have to become it. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to send your daughter to the very place that you ran away from to "keep her safe"...sounds logical to me. Because the King so won't use your daughter to trap you, and who knows with pixies...incest might not be frowned upon so you might have just sacrificed your daughter to the pixie king in your place...
  4.  Zara herself was a flat, boring character. She barely thinks for herself, outside of naming random phobias. She accepts the idea that pixies exist without a blink, then when she finds out Nick is a were she has a panic the same boat, Nick IS a were and claims he loves Zara (after like...3 days mind you) and he gets angry and has a freak out when he realized Zara is half pixie...hello racism...or is it speciesism? Every issue is so overblown and dramatic, I found myself rolling my eyes more than scanning the pages.
I could keep going about the plot points I hated, the characters I hated, and the dialogue I hated for another 3 pages...but like I said, I don't like writing reviews that bash the books. I just wanted to point out a few of the reasons that this book really didn't work for me. It almost offends me when an author appears to be "lazy" and copies ideas from everyone looks like they are only in it for the money, not getting the worlds and people in their heads down on paper for the rest of us to see. 
Rating: I am having a hard time rating this wasn't complete drivel, and I did finish it...but overall, Need was a headache. I was annoyed and frustrated throughout the entire novel and was glad to be done with it :( It pains me to say that I will have to give it 1 1/2 Keys...It just didn't work for me, and I was mildly offended by all the material that appeared to be stolen from other books.


  1. I have heard SO many mixed things about this one... So hard to decide what to do about it!

  2. OMG! Glad I didn't buy it when I had the opportunity... Thank you for the review! : )

  3. I read this a while back. I agree that there were a lot of cheesy parts to it, but I did like Carrie's take on pixies and Zara's obsession with naming phobias too :)

  4. I just read this book! I really did like it, can't decide if I like the style of writing though.

  5. I only read this book to the end in hopes that it got better. I totally agree with you on all your points. The cover is pretty though!

  6. Oooooh noes. Sorry you didn't like this one hun, but your review is really funny! Yeah, hard to believe stories don't work for me either.

  7. Yikes...I don't think I'll be reading that.

  8. I felt the same about this. It was really bad wasn't it? I didn't even like the pixies. The whole thing just didn't work for me.

  9. Sorry, but I totally agree with ya on this one. Just like mrsswt commented earlier, I kept on reading hoping it would get better. However it never happened :( I hate when a book has a good story but gets lost somewhere along the way.

  10. I couldnt get into this book. I did try though...

  11. I totally agree with you. This one just didn't do it for me. I read it during a readathon and it took me hours to get through.

    Your review was awesome though :)

  12. I know! the book was really confusing to me, but there were parts that I did enjoy


  13. Oh no I liked this book. I can't remember everything from the book but I remember liking it. But reading this now makes me wonder why I did. Oh well.

  14. This book kept my attention and there were quite a few surprise that I wasn't expecting, but enjoyed. The author did a good job at making her characters have some depth and Zara was likeable. I liked the whole phobia; it made good chapter headings. There were a few times where I was confused by which father Zara meant, but other than that this is a fun, fast read, and with a nice touch of romance.

  15. Yeah, the book can let you down at times. Though I still read on the next book. Not really better, though i'm still eager to read on.

    -Len of Musings of a Reader Happy