REVIEW: Undeadly by Michelle Vail
by Michelle Vail
The Reaper Diaries, Book One
Expected publication: November 20, 2012
The day I turned 16, my boyfriend-to-be died. I brought him back to life. Then things got a little weird…
Molly Bartolucci wants to blend in, date hottie Rick and keep her zombie-raising abilities on the down-low. Then the god Anubis chooses her to become a reaper-and she accidentally undoes the work of another reaper, Rath. Within days, she’s shipped off to the Nekyia Academy, an elite school that trains the best necromancers in the world. And her personal reaping tutor? Rath. Who seems to hate her guts.
Rath will be watching closely to be sure she completes her first assignment-reaping Rick, the boy who should have died. The boy she still wants to be with. To make matters worse, students at the academy start turning up catatonic, and accusations fly-against Molly. The only way out of this mess? To go through hell. Literally.
MY THOUGHTS: 5 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS
Molly Bartolucci is in the family business. Her father owns Big Al’s Zomporium, where you can have your recently deceased loved one zombified to have around for a while longer. Molly is able to remove souls from bodies, and she’s still in training, but pretty good at it.
Until Molly’s sixteenth birthday party, that is. Her crush gives her her first kiss, then has an accident. Molly tries to save him, but something goes awry. As if that weren’t traumatic enough, her heretofore missing maternal grandparents suddenly show up and tell Molly she is to be shipped off to necromancy boarding school! Being sixteen shouldn’t be so complicated.
A YA book filled with Ancient Egyptian mythology?!?!?! SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY. This book had a whole heck of a lot going on, and I loved every bit of it.
Molly is a really fun girl. Smart, sarcastic, and funny. I laughed out loud at so much of her inner dialogue. She is just barely 16, and I love that she ACTS LIKE IT. In so many YA books, the characters sound like they’re 20-somethings. Molly’s speech is full of teenage slang.
Unlike most YA books, there wasn’t just one supernatural entity in Undeadly. Zombies, ghouls, ghosts, reapers…all ran rampant. This could have gone convoluted, but the author found a way to seamlessly bind them all together.
There were definitely a couple of twists that I didn’t see coming, and as always I appreciate that.
There were just minor things that bothered me: besides Molly, who narrates, there isn’t very much development of the other characters. I do know that this is the first in a planned series though, so I’m hoping that will be remedied in future books. Also, as far as the big twist in the middle, I thought Molly would have reacted a bit more. I almost felt like it shocked me more than her!
As far as the end, holy CLIFFHANGER Batman! I was waiting for Molly to open her mouth and defend herself, but the book ended quite abruptly. I had so much fun reading this book, and you better believe I’m waiting on pins and needles for the next one :)
*I was able to review this book thanks to Around the World ARC Tours.