Saturday, January 24, 2015

Burning Hearts by Melanie Matthews Review

I won a copy from Goodreads First Reads.

"Burning Hearts is a young adult paranormal romance about a bullied girl whose destiny to fight evil is awakened when a charming foreigner with supernatural abilities and a troubled past moves to her desert town.

Jenna Love, a seventeen-year-old who’s the target of nasty rumors and insults by her former beau and friends, finds out there are far worse baddies in the world. They’re the Jinn, proud members of Team Evil. And Jenna’s the lucky gal chosen for demon disposal, burning them to ashes. So it makes perfect sense for her to fall in love with one, right?

Malcolm King, a half-human, half-Jinni from Egypt, is different. Seeking to start a new life in Oasis, Arizona, he acts more like an angel than a demon, keeping his bad half under lock and key. Jenna’s off the hook from killing him, which is great because he’s the best boyfriend she’s ever had.

So what could go wrong? Oh, how about the arrival of Malcolm’s ex-girlfriend, a demon with abandonment issues? With her crafty ways, she’s trying to lure him back. Half-human, he’s susceptible to her suggestion; half-demon, his dark side yearns to be reunited with hers. Jenna knows she’s up against a powerful rival, but she won’t back down until the demon ex is in her line of fire.

Flame on."

First of all, I want to say that Burning Hearts' synopsis reveals more about the plot than necessary. Like I was waiting for the ex-girlfriend to come in so everything that should be interesting comes in, but the truth is that the ex-girlfriend (who is apparently "skanky") doesn't come in until past the halfway point of the book (which is about a hundred or two hundred pages long).

^Yeah. That is complicated. 

Let's start simplifying things. First of all, let's start with the plot overall. It is sort of boring in the beginning, because of the language and things (seriously, who uses "stuck-ups" for the elite class of the high school. I would personally call those people to be social climbers or queen bees, but I'm not going to get too into word usage). Plus, some of the things are sort of convenient (because plot demands a lot of things). 

(And there are indeed some cheesy parts that made me roll my eyes). 

The background information and world building is good, but I do have to comment about the usage of the word, Jinni. I'm sure that Jinni is actually like a wish-granting genie in mythology, and this change for "Jinni" to be demons is quite interesting.

Actually, I take back the previous paragraph. A quick search using Google proved that "Jinni" are demons in the Quran. So I guess the word usage for Jinni is fine, but many people are quite unfamiliar with that term. You can thank Disney's Aladdin (and some other Young Adult books) for that.

Let's talk about characters. I want to say that Jenna is given all the things necessary to defeat anyone who opposes her too easily. Sure, she suddenly opens a box and gifts suddenly rain down on her. (A little bit work for the characters, please? Conflict makes plot and stories much more interesting). And we can talk about Malcolm, who is a big "meh" to me. Or we can talk about his "skanky" ex-girlfriend, who has pretty much no character traits other than seething jealousy.

Also, I have this pet peeve. How come nearly every male in this book comes to date/love/have a crush on Jenna? She claims to be ugly, and her enemies think so too, but why does everyone starts falling in love with her? It kind of makes me raise my eyebrows at some point or another. 

Overall, Burning Hearts is an entertaining book that kept me interested, but there are some points in the book that I seriously didn't like.

Rating: Three out of Five

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