Friday, June 8, 2012

Review: Masque of the Red Death

Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin
Published by Harper Collins
Genre: YA (dystopian?)
$17.99 (US hardback)
320 pages

What it's about:
Everything is in ruins.

A devastating plague has decimated the population. And those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles to pieces around them.

So what does Araby Worth have to live for?

Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery make-up . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.

But in the depths of the club—in the depths of her own despair—Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club. And Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither boy is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.

And Araby may find something not just to live for, but to fight for—no matter what it costs her.

My thoughts:
Ever since I first heard about this book and then saw the cover, I knew I had to read it. A retold Poe story? AWESOME! This new trend of adding Poe's works to YA fiction is one that I'm adoring. I knew if this book was anything like Nevermore by Kelly Creagh, that I was going to be madly in love with it.

After finishing the book, I can't say that I'm madly in love with it, but I did enjoy it. I don't know what I was really expecting from the book. Maybe for it to take place in the same setting as Poe's short story, aka the castle, and be a little more like Poe's work, but it wasn't like that at all. The book takes place in the city a few hours away from Prince Prospero's castle and the time setting is... I don't know when. If I had to guess I'd say around early 20th century. I was surprised by the Steampunk feel of the book.

I only have one main complaint about this book which is that at points, the writing could be very confusing. There would be random sentences that didn't seem to fit in. Like they were accidentally not deleted during a rewrite. There were also times that I felt like some sentences were left out and I'd have to go back and reread the last paragraph to figure out how the characters got from point A to point B. These problems didn't so much feel like a style of writing, more like editing errors.

What I really loved about this book was how dark it was. Weird thing to love about a book, I know, but it's true. Griffin did a fantastic job showing how horrible the plague was and Prince Prospero? What a bastard! He's right up there with Voldemorte and Valentine on the evil scale. He was an actual villain to be scared of.

So overall, I liked this book. I could have done without the religion vs. science parts, and the writing could be confusing, but it was still a great book and I will probably continue on with the series.

My rating: 8/10


  1. Hmmm, I've been interested in this one but there's nothing I hate worse than editing errors that rip you out of a story and leave you feeling confused. Sigh! I guess if the story is good enough it might be worth it but still.

    1. I've read lots of reviews for this book and I seem to be the only one with this complaint, so maybe it was just me. If you've been interested in this book you should definitely read it. :)

  2. I really loved this one but I can understand what kept you from feeling the same. I agree with Price Prospero though, I'm pretty sure him and Voldemort are in some secret villain club together...possibly co-chairs.

    The darkness of the story, and how twisted it was, really pulled me into Poe's mind I felt. I mean, I know that the novel was quite different from his short story but it seemed to have the same feel as Poe's works...if that makes any sense.

    Great review!

    1. haha I can just imagine what a top secret evil club would be like with Voldemorte and Prospero. For some strange reason Dr. Evil is there with them. It's hilarious. Hmmm that would make a really cool short story.


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