Review: Vanish by Sophie Jordan

Posted September 17, 2011 by Carmel in / 0 Comments

Title: Vanish
Series: Firelight #2
Author: Sophie Jordan
Publisher: HarperTeen
Published: September 6, 2011
My Copy: NetGalley

To save the life of the boy she loves, Jacinda did the unthinkable: She betrayed the most closely-guarded secret of her kind. Now she must return to the protection of her pride knowing she might never see Will again—and worse, that because his mind has been shaded, Will’s memories of that fateful night and why she had to flee are gone.

Back home, Jacinda is greeted with hostility and must work to prove her loyalty for both her sake and her family’s. Among the few who will even talk to her are Cassian, the pride’s heir apparent who has always wanted her, and her sister, Tamra, who has been forever changed by a twist of fate. Jacinda knows that she should forget Will and move on—that if he managed to remember and keep his promise to find her, it would only endanger them both. Yet she clings to the hope that someday they will be together again. When the chance arrives to follow her heart, will she risk everything for love?

In bestselling author Sophie Jordan’s dramatic follow-up to Firelight, forbidden love burns brighter than ever.

I’ve been looking forward to reading this one all summer and maybe it’s my own fault for getting too hyped up in advance but I’m not going to lie, I was disappointed by Vanish. That’s not to say that this book doesn’t have some strong points; it does, but it’s very different from the first book. There’s a lot more draki content which I really enjoyed compared to Firelight which revolved primarily around Jacinda’s experiences in the human world. I was happily coasting through this novel until I hit the ending. It felt incomplete in my opinion. I actually double-checked my ARC to see if there was a download error while hoping that my eReader was missing pages. No such luck. Perhaps it was an attempt on Sophie Jordan’s part at a cliffhanger ending but I found that the final pages were abrupt and as a result, Vanish felt unfinished.

In Vanish, Jacinda spends the majority of her time among the pride. This change of location allowed Sophie to explore the inner workings of the draki in more detail. I enjoyed learning about the different breeds, their associated abilities as well as pride politics. It quickly became apparent that they live in patriarchal society and that their females rank pretty low on the totem pole. There were a few points where I almost had steam coming out of my ears. The amount of suffering that these poor women have to endure is staggering. It’s a wonder that more haven’t tried to flee but then again, most of them probably suffer from Stockholm syndrome seeing how this is the only life they’ve ever known. Jacinda’s treated a bit differently than the rest of the females because her breed of draki was thought to have been extinct. Although, she quickly loses whatever advantages she had by refusing to follow the rules.

I didn’t like Jacinda’s character as much in this installment. Her inability to make up her mind and to think for herself got on my nerves. She wavers between wanting to run away to putting her life on the line for her oppressive pride members. At certain points it almost felt like she’s like one of those abuse victims who just never learn and keep going back to their tormentor because they think that deep down somewhere these people are hurting them only because they love them so much. I understand that she’s had pretty primitive schooling and didn’t live in the human world for very long but still! Jacinda’s gut is trying to tell her something; why does she keep ignoring it!?

It was the ending that truly destroyed this book for me. I enjoyed every page up until that point. Vanish is overflowing with dragon mythology, the action is non-stop and there’s a lingering sense of danger throughout the story. I just think that the ending wasn’t much of an ending at all. No loose ends were tied up, readers received nothing to help them out with their unanswered questions and there wasn’t much of a cliffhanger either. Will, Jacinda, Tamra and Cassian were right smack in the thick of things and then… nothing. I’m doubting myself now… Maybe I read it wrong or maybe I missed something? Either way, for me it felt like something major was missing in those final pages. This series has me feeling so frustrated now! I was a fan but now I’m not so sure.

Firelight fans might be disappointed with this one. At least I know that I was. Even though I did enjoy learning more about the draki; I missed Jacinda’s impossible romance with Will and the human factor from the first book. The ending didn’t leave me wanting more, if anything, it turned me off from this series. Apparently this is a trilogy, so my advice would be to hold off on reading this one until the third book is published. Perhaps if you read them back-to-back it’ll make more sense.

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I review Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance books with a focus all things werewolf. Based out of Ottawa, Canada

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