Monday, January 4, 2016

eARC Review: Dead Boy by Laurel Gale


Title: Dead Boy
Author: Laurel Gale
Page Count: 256
Genre: Middle Grade, fantasy, paranormal
Rating: 4 Stars!

Blurb: Crow Darlingson died in the 4th grade. But he’s still alive. And growing, actually. He can’t eat or taste anything, his body parts sometimes fall off (mom always sews them back on, though), and he’s only allowed to leave his house once per year, on Halloween.

Crow’s parents are separating, and despite their reassurances, he’s pretty sure it’s his fault. After all, having an undead son can’t be much easier than being one. Sneaking out at night only makes things worse, but he can’t resist the chance at a real friendship with Melody Plympton, the new girl next door, who loves mystery more than she minds the stink of his flesh or the maggots that sometimes crawl out of his nose.

Together they investigate the mysterious Meera - a monster living in the nearby park. Logic and fear tell Crow to stay away, but fuzzy memories lure him on. When Crow and Melody venture into its underground lair, Crow’s not just risking the half-life he clings to. He’s also risking the only friend he’s had in years.

The importance of friendship is crystallized as Crow and Melody face tests of loyalty, courage, and honor in this macabre middle grade novel by a debut author

Review: I requested Dead Boy on NetGalley ages ago, and got accepted, then totally forgot about reading it. I finally picked it up today, January 4th, because I had the day off from school and wanted something quick and easy, and wanted something I would hopefully enjoy more than the other books I had read this year....And I was not disappointed at all!!!

This book is adorable. Not in the way that Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda is adorable, but in a cute kid way... I loved it so much.

Our story follows Crow Darlingson who is a dead boy, and lives with his mother. His mother has strict rules not allowing him to leave the house except for on Halloween... and Crow is moderately okay with this... and then Melody moves in next door, and she decides she wants to become friends with him, seeing him one night in his backyard. Here a friendship blooms, and she notices he is dead pretty early on, but accepts him for that fact. He is her proof that magic exists, and its a beautiful thing. Their friendship becomes something really special throughout the novel and the themes discussed are actually quite powerful.

This book gives an importance to friendship, as the book is based upon Melody and Crow's grand adventure fighting the Meera, a mystical shape-shifter that is responsible for granting wishes that may have something to do with Crow's mysterious death... They have to go through a variety of tasks and it was quite fun to read, very enjoyable.

The "villains" of this book were quite stereotypical, but I enjoyed them nonetheless, especially their habitat descriptions.. (you'll understand when you read the book)

This was just a fun read that I flew through, reading it in a very very short period of time.

If you are looking for something that is light and quick, but holds a deeper message, and is just overall fun, I would pick up this book! I highly recommend.

Consensus: Laurel Gale's Dead Boy follows Crow Darlingson, a dead boy, as he gets his first friend since dying. With this friend they battle a variety of tasks testing virtues, and the friendship strengthens. This book promises a story filled with mystery, magic, tests of virtue... and it delivers. Laurel Gale's debut novel shines with brilliance, and young readers and older readers alike are bound to find the magic in this novel.

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