Author: Megan Miranda (Twitter)
Publisher: Walker Children's
Publish Date: Februrary 4, 2014
Genre: YA, Paranormal Mystery
Nobody really believes in a curse. Until you know the people who disappear. Too much coincidence, you look for reason. Too much death, you grasp for something to blame. Carson pulled Delaney out and he died on the side of the road with her mouth pressed to his. Her air in his body. Troy. She told the cops it was suicide. Didn't matter. The lake released her and grabbed another.But when Decker's father dies in a pool of spilled water on their kitchen floor, all Decker can feel is a slow burning rage. Because he knows that Delaney knew that his dad was going to die. She knew and backed out of his house and never said a word. Falcon Lake still has a hold on them both, and Decker can't forgive Delaney until he knows why.
Vengeance, much like its predecessor, Fracture, gives readers a sampling of everything we like all in one novel. Offering us romance, friendship, betrayal, mystery, paranormal and more, it's a whirlwind of a novel that captures us from the get-go, pulling us in with a near-immediate loss that serves to solidify our investment in the story and our characters' plights. Author, Megan Miranda, does it again, crafting a novel that's rife with twists, turns and unanswered questions, demanding the readers read on to understand the true nature of the events as they unfold. It's the type of novel that you can easily read in one sitting, but you can't help but want to make it last longer.
What I found most intriguing about Vengeance is that while it's presented as a sequel, I felt it could almost stand alone, so it was more of a companion novel than anything else. Ms. Miranda gives readers plenty of backstory to set the stage for readers that haven't yet read Fracture and, surprisingly enough, a new viewpoint makes it a completely new story, as well. While the first novel was written from Delaney's point of view, the second novel is written from Decker's. I though it was incredibly well done how very distinct each voice was, and while Delaney's voice was more confused and anguished, Decker's story was much more volatile, which well fit the title and the mood of the story.
Vengeance was a careful balance of mystery, a touch of tortured romance and a psychological thriller, with each element being thrust into the limelight for key elements of the story. I found this to be an extremely well-played asset of the novel because it gave us a little bit of everything without ever inundating us with too much. However, I will say that the novel's pacing felt a bit off to me. For the first third of the book, I was blown away by the speed of the action and mystery's progression. However, by the second third, everything seemed to slow down, and it remained that way until the final third of the novel, which picked right back up again. I would have liked to see a more interspersed degree of speeds, if only to keep my heart racing the whole time.
Furthermore, it must be said that Vengeance does offer us a bit more predictability than its predecessor. While very well-written, I found some of the clues and indicators to be a bit too obvious for my liking. With a mystery novel, I like things to remain a guessing game until the 11th hour, so I felt a bit cheated by that. I will say, however, that I actually really enjoyed Decker's point of view this time around. While Delaney's viewpoint had me a bit claustrophobic at times, Decker's anger and volatility kept things spicy and alive.
Overall, despite a few hiccups, I quite enjoyed Vengeance. I do think I enjoyed the first novel more, but I can definitely appreciate the direction the author took the story, and I still absolutely love her writing style. I give it a high 3.5 out of 5, and I highly recommend it to fans of YA, especially those who enjoy mysteries and psychological thrillers.
I received this book free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.