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Friday, 8 August 2014
Buy or Borrow: Buy
Source: ARC Courtesy of NetGalley
Check out my review for Cracked the first in the series!
When I saw Crushed pop up on NetGalley I was majorly excited, I'd stumbled upon Cracked and I immediately loved it, it was unique what with the whole Beacons thing among others, then there's the whole bit where you get the story from Meda's point of view, aka a demon and gleeful killer, but not unlike everyones favourite serial killer Dexter, she only goes for the baddies! When I finished Cracked I was itching for the next book, I needed more Meda in my life and her entertaining narrative, and luckily for me, NetGalley delivered....after an agonizing few months wait of course!
In round two Meda is at the new location for the Crusaders, who are currently building a new school, but until then they live in a place that could...well...let's just say it could do with a pick me up. She is a Crusader in training...or she would be if the Crusaders would actually train her properly, including in the use of magic. Meda is firmly on team "goody goody", determined to help the Crusaders and be a hero....or at least be good. Partly because she wants to, partly because she wants to do it for BFF Jo....it's nothing all to do with the fact that the Crusaders are the only thing stopping every demon in the vicinity killing her. Nothing at all. Much.
Looks like everything's going all fine and dandy for our reformed demon right? Wrong. You see the Crusaders still don't trust her, in fact they're well on their way in to making her their enemy. Forced posession...lock on her door....feeding only when they say and practically starving her, not to mention the constant bullying. Meda gives and gives, but it's never good enough for the Crusaders, and as they start to push her more...well...Meda see's no reason to remain on their side, particularly when they start trying to kill her.
Lucky for her Armand pops up. Remember him from the last book? Hot but incredibly shady? Yeah him. He decides he's bored and needs a vacay from the fiery pits of hell, and who better to hang out with than Meda? As their friendship forms, Meda can't say no when he offers her an escape from the people fast becoming her jailers and would be murderers. But can you really trust a demon? Especially when the Beacon Map and a Soul are prizes to be won....
"For a homicidal group, they're appallingly restrictive.
No, Meda, you can't leave campus.
No, Meda, you know you have a curfew.
No, Meda, you can't eat that guy."
First of all I should probably warn you all that there's scenes of intense murder and mayhem, Meda is after all a half Demon who does need to eat, and does so enjoy eating. There's some very intense Dexter Vibes with the whole "well....I'm gonna kill you because I need sustenance, but you kinda deserve it because you are a whack job serial killer soooo...."
"Karma, not unlike myself, is a bitch"
This time round I wasn't sure what the hell to expect...maybe some more friends for Meda.....or some romance or something, but I should have known I would be woefully wrong. C'mon Eliza, give the girl a break!
Crushed continues to be just as unique as Cracked, we see less of the magic and we don't get any new shreds of history regarding the Crusaders, we do get a glimpse more of the hierarchy and some of the higher ups, as it where. Crewe's take on demons and their hunters continues to be unique and a breath of fresh air, keeping your interest piqued, particularly with that little nugget at the end of the book!
"As they say, if you're gonna do the time, you might as well enjoy the crime."
That quote right there? Totally my new life motto, I mean c'mon, how could it not be?! As you can tell from the quotes I've skillfully nudged in to this review so far, Meda's snark game is still strong. In the first book I loved her wit, snark and dark humour, and I continued to love it in Crushed. Meda's narrative, while intriguing, does make you laugh a hell of a lot, whether it's appropriate or not!
Meda's narrative continued to be engaging, I still love that we get the story from the point of view of Meda, watching her struggle with what to do regarding the Crusaders and the Demons, you could really see how far her character has come since the first book, she tries so hard to be good, and to be honest seeing the killing bad guys thing from her perspective is always entertaining!
Meda is written so well, and with such depth that when you're reading, you feel whatever she feels. I mean I felt some intense outrage, frustration and irritation towards the Crusaders in this book and how they treated Meda but expected so much of her still. You are 100% on Meda's side throughout the whole book, following her thought process, rooting for her and so on.
"Like the last time I saw him, he is dressed entirely in black. As he's a half-demon and agent of evil, I can only assume it's his standard uniform."
Armand. Oh Armand. Dammit all to hell. I really liked him, I mean at first, like Meda, I was wary of him, he had shady written all over him, but I ended up really liking him. I was rooting for Meda to finally get someone who understands her 100% and who's there for her, who would stand up for her and everything, and I really thought it was gonna be him and I was rooting for Meda to get some love finally but nooooo. I think I spent the end of the book ignoring the obvious outcome because I really wanted to believe he was looking out for Meda. I mean he was.....sort of? But still. I don't think we've seen the last of him though. *Ominous music* Armand is every bit as complex a character as Meda is, he's not as human as her, but he has his reasons for his actions that are intriguing.
Jo and Chi continue to be fantastically written and I love Jo and how she's Meda's personal cheerleader at times, with the whole be good thing and how she's always looking out for her. In full "Mind meld with Meda" mode, I spent most of the book thinking, wow Jo became SUCH a bitch, like how could you do that, and then at the big reveal I was like "wow I'm stupid.....and I feel bad now" I just love their friendship to be honest. It's fantastically written, and Chi's well.....Chi.
The plot was intriguing, watching Meda make her choice and seeing where the story was going to go...over to the dark side or staying on the good side. It's also set up what appears to be a promising third book. As I said we've not seen the last of Armand and there was a nice little bomb drop right at the end which has opened up so many possibilities. Not to mention needing to know what happens next. While there is a plot, to me, a lot of the book was Meda being tested, testing herself even, to see if she can really remain this good person that she wants to be, and proving herself to the Crusaders. But the plot was well devised all in all.
Crushed is a fantastic sequel that surpasses Cracked, in my opinion. Fast paced, concise and with plenty going on to keep you interested...although Meda's inner commentary is enough to amuse you and keep you highly entertained if not! I'm excited to see where the series is going to go!