Friday, August 12, 2011

Book Review: Red Riding Hood

Title: Red Riding Hood

Author: Sarah Blakley-Cartwright

About the Book (from Goodreads):

Valerie's sister was beautiful, kind, and sweet. Now she is dead. Henry, the handsome son of the blacksmith, tries to console Valerie, but her wild heart beats fast for another: the outcast woodcutter, Peter, who offers Valerie another life far from home.

After her sister's violent death, Valerie's world begins to spiral out of control. For generations, the Wolf has been kept at bay with a monthly sacrifice. But now no one is safe. When an expert Wolf hunter arrives, the villagers learn that the creature lives among them--it could be anyone in town.

It soon becomes clear that Valerie is the only one who can hear the voice of the creature. The Wolf says she must surrender herself before the blood moon wanes...or everyone she loves will die.

My Review:

This book is based on the screenplay for the movie that came out earlier this year. It's odd that it's not the other way around, as per usual, and it shows. It feels like the author watched the movie, then sat down and wrote the book. Now, I haven't seen the movie yet, though I do plan on watching it, so I don't know if the dialogue is taken word for word from the screenplay, but the author constantly switches perspectives. She can't decide if the book is third person, first person, or omniscient. She does a little of everything. And it's distracting. And I hated it.

Now, that's just the writing style. As far as the plot goes, I thought it was a fascinating story, but it would have to be if it was a movie first.

I really wanted to figure out who the werewolf was before I got to the end of the book. I can usually figure these things out. Books feel like puzzles to me and I am always dwelling on the pieces trying to fit them together to get a look at the bigger picture. I couldn't do it with the book, though I was pleasantly surprised with who the werewolf ended up being.

I hate that they did a bonus chapter that is located online and not in the book. The ending to the actual book was not satisfying at all, it was rather frustrating really. But the bonus chapter ending is great, if you actually take the time to go and read it. At the very back of the book it says: "Is this truly the end of Valerie's story? Visit to find out." I never would have actually gone if a friend of mine hadn't already told me that there was a bonus chapter there.

I'm really curious about the movie now. I want to know which ending the movie goes with. I have the one I hope for, but I won't find out until I sit down and watch it. As far as my recommendation, you may as well just watch the movie. But if you can get past the weird perspectives, you may enjoy the book.

My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars (The plot redeemed the writing for me.)

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