Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Demon's Lexicon (The Demon's Lexicon #1) by Sarah Rees Brennan

Goodreads rating: 3.83
Paperback, 352 pages
Published June 2nd 2009 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
Source: Bought

Nick and his brother, Alan, have spent their lives on the run from magic. Their father was murdered, and their mother was driven mad by magicians and the demons who give them power. The magicians are hunting the Ryves family for a charm that Nick's mother stole -- a charm that keeps her alive -- and they want it badly enough to kill again.

Danger draws even closer when a brother and sister come to the Ryves family for help. The boy wears a demon's mark, a sign of death that almost nothing can erase...and when Alan also gets marked by a demon, Nick is desperate to save him. The only way to do that is to kill one of the magicians they have been hiding from for so long.

Ensnared in a deadly game of cat and mouse, Nick starts to suspect that his brother is telling him lie after lie about their past. As the magicians' Circle closes in on their family, Nick uncovers the secret that could destroy them all.

This is the Demon's Lexicon. Turn the page.

I'm always interested to read YA novels from the guy's point of view, especially when the book is written by a woman. But Nick was nothing like I expected. Guys generally in this genre pretend not to care, when in reality it's eating them up inside. Nick just doesn't care. He's the most unfeeling character that I've ever been in the head of, and I was hoping we'd have some sort of breakthrough, no matter how small. But I guess I'm a dreamer. When we're first introduced to Nick and Alan, two demon-hunting brothers, there's a good tete-a-tete going between them. But after siblings Mae and Jamie knock on their door and explain that Jamie has a demon mark that almost guarantees him dead, that's the end of the fun between Nick and Alan. They all he to go to this Goblin Market if they even want a chance at removing Jamie's mark. This is where it got confusing for me. Apparently Nick is a dancer that can call demons (I have nothing against male dancers, but that did not seem to it his personality at all) and Mae can dance too. You can buy magical things here and barter and trade. What happens is that Jamie has a better chance of living, but Alan is closer to death. And Nick is not happy.

This was unlike any love triangle I've ever experienced. Nick thinks Mae is nice-looking, but it's obvious that Alan is infatuated with her for whatever reason. Nick is already unfeeling so he doesn't seem to feel very strongly for her, but he does start to care a little nearing the end, and tolerates Jamie as well. He's fiercely protective of Alan because Alan always tries to take care of Nick, and Alan has a limp from a past injury. But Mae and Nick have a moment and now everything's confusing. Nick just didn't seem to care that Mae was sort of with Alan. The only one he cares about is Alan. Even his own mother doesn't want to be near him, only Alan. That's explained though at the end. For Jamie, I think that he might be gay. Just some of the things he says to Nick and Alan, it just seems right. But since they don't say anything about it in this one, hopefully we'll find out in the next books.

I wish there was something redeemable about Nick so that this book could have been better. His humor was always dry and there was never any situational comedy with any of the characters. Jamie was whiney, Mae was fiercely protective but obviously had issues, and Alan is a lair, especially to Nick apparently. But we find out that Nick is not who he thought he was, and everything that he thought was true has all been a lie. Understandably he gets angry, which is the only emotion he really has. But we find out that's for a reason, and the four of them will never be the same. This was a good setup for the rest of the series. I just wish that I'd liked Nick better, especially since he was the narrator. I've started reading the second book, which is from Mae's point of view, and better so far than the first one.

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