Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon has to be one of the most wonderfully surprising books I have read in a long time. While much of the basic format is similar to the many young adult books out there, the idea is unique and a lot of fun. I am afraid to use the word but you will all have to trust me on this-zombies. Ok, not exactly zombies but a spin-off on the idea. Just trust me...
Again, the basic premise is that the main character Renee is sent to a boarding school after her parents mysteriously die. All is not well at this boarding school and students have died. Enter the smokin' hot, mysterious love interest, Dante. I have to add that even if the name seems to be made for this genre, I LOVE this name and it suits the persona of this character perfectly. Ok, back to the story...
Renee feels a pull towards dead things. As in, she is actually compelled to whatever area this dead thing is, be it a dead animal or a dead human. Clearly the driving force of this plot is Renee's need to discover why kids at her school have died, her kinship with dead things, and what this means for her relationship with Dante.
I'm not big on giving much of the plot away but I just love the way Woon works a potentially creepy idea into something romantic. The plot moves along naturally and I never once wished it would speed up or slow down. I also really appreciated how Woon spent enough time describing things but you never get bogged down in two pages of describing a minute detail. Her writing showcases her talent and doesn't need unnecessary fluff to prove she can write. (Note to writers-try not to show off, most of us just want to skip those parts anyways)
As the plot moves towards the end, the only fault I find is the ending seems to be a bit contradictory to what we learned earlier in the book. I have read that there will be a sequel and I only have to hope and assume that the ending will be addressed right away. This book is completely age appropriate if a true 'young adult' is reading this. I would say that anywhere ages 13 and up could appreciate the storyline and older readers will appreciate the subtle ideas brought up.
If I were to grade this book, I would give a an A-/B+ I can't give a mark like this out lightly, so it is true testament to how much I enjoyed this book and hope you all do as well. Please let me know if you end up reading this and give me some feedback, I'd love to know if you agree/disagree with me!
P.S. I hadn't read the book Need by Carrie Jones and I have to say, Bianca picked out a fabulous book and I read all three in the series and fell in love. You've got to check them out! :)