Devoured

Devoured - Amanda Marrone If I could summarize my reaction to "Devoured" by Amanda Marrone, it would be in two words: disjointed mediocrity. That might sound a bit harsh in terms of a story based loosely on the Snow White fairy tale, and it actually saddens me to say it because the premise seemed promising (not to mention it has a beautiful cover). However the intrigue of the premise is not executed well as the story progresses, from establishing cookie cutter characters whose actions make very little sense to events that may leave the reader scratching their head as to how certain events move from one point to the next. Granted, I will say that "Devoured" is easy to pick up and read in one sitting - I read it in about an hour and a half because the prose was easy to follow along (in terms of readability - not logic). Granted it could've read much better with more fleshing to the events and character voice, but I think that's a moot point and Marrone does have a distinct handle on her protagonist's mindset.Let me establish the good about "Devoured" - it blends a paranormal ghost story with fairy tale elements, and it does have its share of harrowing moments. Megan is a young woman who lost her twin sister, Remy, in a tragic car accident, an accident which also left her father in a permanent coma. But in recent note, after taking a job at the Land of Enchantment theme park, Megan is haunted by Remy far more aggressively than she's ever been before, causing Megan to wonder what's to blame. Megan sees horrific visions as shown by her sister's haunted image - including a dead girl with a missing heart as well as her comrade's mother talking to a crude mirror. On top of those visions, Megan has to deal with the possibility that her boyfriend Ryan may not be able to resist the advances of Samantha, while also dealing with the oncoming advances of Luke (who just so happens to be the apple of one of Megan's coworkers, Ari). I think choosing to blend these elements together would've made for a nice story, with enough variety in its conflictive angles to keep readers on their toes, and especially when certain events come to pass in the end.However, that's where the bad comes in. The progression in this scheme is terribly executed. Remy's haunting of Megan becomes a bit repetitive and slightly cumbersome in points, though it intends to be creepy (in some points it was to me, but after a while I could sympathize with Megan how annoying it was when Remy showed up). The love triangle is totally botched. When Megan's not being suspicious of Ryan, it's not like she does much to fend off the advances of Luke, whom seems to know too much about her without any natural progression as to how. There are some candid love scenes (especially when Megan ends up in Luke's bed after she supposedly gets sick - my reaction was much akin to "Seriously?" It felt so forced it made me roll my eyes and facepalm in succeeding motions.) and language in places, but that didn't faze me as much as the fact that there was really no lead-in to these scenes, and I didn't feel anything towards the characters to be able to say that those scenes worked. Suffice to say, "Devoured" may describe how quickly I read this book, but it left a bitter taste in my mouth, and I wish I could say I could recommend it, but I cannot, not when there are many fairy tale spin-offs that are far beyond and above this level. I will read some of Marrone's other works to get a handle on her style, but this isn't a book I would come back to.Overall score: 1.5/5