Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Warrior Beautiful

116. Warrior Beautiful, by Wendy Knight.

Warrior Beautiful (Riders of Paradesos, #1)At the beginning of the novel, Scout is a damaged soul: she's still recovering from an accident that left her unable to dance as she'd like, and she's still recovering from heartbreak (her ex broke things off at the same time as the accident). She throws herself into dance at school and focuses her energy on her relationship with her sister, Lil Bit. (Okay, side note: I really struggled with this nick-name. The kid is eleven and the nickname makes her seem even more juvenile than she actually is). Lil Bit can see things that aren't there: unicorns and nightmare creatures she calls Soul Stealers. Scout isn't quite sure what to think of Lil Bit's visions, but she knows her sister isn't a liar. Then, when a strange disease begins attacking people in town (including Scout's sister) and Scout actually sees a Soul Stealer, she realizes there's a lot going on that she doesn't know.

For starters, she gets recruited to be a unicorn rider. Unicorns fight Soul Stealers, but they are much more powerful with a human rider. Scout is willing to do anything to save her sister--but when her ex is also recruited to ride with the unicorns, Scout isn't sure if her heart is up for it.

There was a lot to like here: the writing is clean and fast-paced, the plot was interesting, and the relationship between Scout and her sister was genuinely touching. I didn't love everything though. (I already mentioned the nickname thing). Sometimes I felt like Scout's drama with her ex was a little over the top. And while I love the idea of powerful battle unicorns, the fact that these ancient, powerful, inhuman creatures sometimes act like human teenagers was just a little hard for me to buy.

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