Monday, June 28, 2010

Review of Captivate

Captivate (Need #2) by Carrie Jones
Pages: 273
Genre: YA Fantasy
Pub. Date: January 5, 2010
My Rating: 3/5 stars

If you haven't read Need yet, be sure to check out my review here.  

Goodreads says, "Zara and her friends knew they hadn't solved the pixie problem for good. Far from it. The king's needs grow deeper every day he's stuck in captivity, while his control over his people gets weaker. It's made him vulnerable. And now there's a new king in town.  A turf war is imminent, since the new pixie king, Astley, is moving in quickly. Nick nearly killed him in the woods on day one, but Zara came to his rescue. Astley swears that he and Zara are destined to be together, that he's one of the good guys. Nick isn't buying it, though Zara isn't as sure -- despite herself, she wants to trust the new king. But it's a lot more than her relationship with Nick that is at stake. It's her life -- and his."

As you know, there was a huge pixie problem in Need.  So, Zara and her friends are hiding pixies in captivity in order to keep them away from humans, especially with what happened in the first book. Remember poor Jay?  Zara feels that all pixies are evil, including her father, a pixie king.  Now since her father is being held captive along with many other pixies, he is losing power and now other kings are coming around to gain control.  Enter a new king, Astley, who is challenging Zara's beliefs concerning pixies, because he is kind, nice, and pretty much the opposite of evil.  But her loyal friends, Issie and Devyn, as well as dreamy boyfriend Nick, are encouraging her to be careful around him.  The big question in this book is can she trust Astley and what will happen to her world if there is a fight between the two sides.  Captivate, the sequel to Need by Carrie Jones, although sounded very promising to me, was simply just ok.

Let me start off my saying what I liked about this book.  I thought the new character of Astley was great. The book really needed a new conflict and strong character, because for the first one hundred pages, it simply felt like Need all over again.  Astley is very mysterious and interesting; I found myself wanting to trust him, but whether he is good or evil is yet to be determined.  Of course, I am a fan of Nick.  I wasn't as "into" him this book, because I feel like the whole dynamic changed now that Nick and Zara are actually a couple.  Additionally, I enjoy Zara's spunky grandmother, Betty, and Zara's friends, Issie and Devyn.  Issie's comments are especially funny and who doesn't love the tough grandmother, Betty?  I can honestly say that she may be the coolest grandmother in young adult fiction.  Lastly, I thought the climax was compelling and I was definitely hooked by that point in the novel. Some of the events did take me by surprise and it held my interest.  

What I didn't enjoy was Zara. Just as in Need, she makes ridiculous decisions and I'm not sure she thinks things through. She just keeps throwing herself into these deadly situations. I call this the Bella Swan syndrome.  It was annoying after awhile.  I also felt like many parts of this book weren't believable to the reader.  I know it's paranormal, but it should feel a natural progression within the plot.  I can't say I always felt that.  Lastly, I have a question.  What is up with characters in YA finding out their absent dads are evil kings of some sort?  Captivate, Iron King and Mortal Instruments are just a few books that have this very same about daddy issues!  It's kind of like the trend in YA where the girl meets a mysterious new guy in Chemistry class.   I'm not complaining, I'm just curious.  Can anyone provide me any insight?

I am a fan of Need.  If you read my review, you could tell I had some minor issues with it, but overall, I enjoyed it.  I can't say I had the same experience with Captivate.  Although it was mildly entertaining and even funny at times due to the witty dialogue, I found I wasn't invested in it at all.  Will I read the third installment, Entice, due out January 3, 2011?  I'm not sure yet.  Captivate did leave me wondering what will who knows. Perhaps I will, but on the other hand, I might have to break up with this series, because there are other series out there that I have a better connection with.  You know the whole "it's not you, it's me" saying applies here.  Sorry, Nick, but Gale is coming back this August and I'll be preoccupied. :)

*Buy Need
*Pre-order Entice

*Book Trailer for Captivate:


  1. I havent read your whole review, cause I'm thinking about buying the two books and read them in the summer. I'm sorry that you didn't quite enjoyed it. I mean not reading the third one, means that it's just okay, nothing more. Well let's hope the Hunger Games book is going to be awesome!

  2. Seriously, I love all of your reviews, but some of them are CLASSIC. Bella Swan Syndrome (I just may have to steal that term from you, btw), evil king-daddy issues (so true), Chemistry class hookups (ugh), breaking up with series (hard to do!)...I kept nodding my head while reading this review. Oh and you can have Gale -- I'll take Peeta! (:

  3. Nina- Yeah, it just fell short for me, but I hope you enjoy it!

    Kris- Haha. I'm glad you liked it. Ahhhh, so you are Team Peeta? Hmmm.

  4. ooh your the first person I've met who hated Captivated lol.

  5. BM- I definitely didn't hate it, but I didn't love it. It was definitely a middle of the road type of book for me. Thanks for stopping by!

  6. I dislike it when the MC makes ridiculous, foolish decisions, but at the same time it's interesting to see him/her get into and out of trouble. I feel like yelling at the person, "How could you do such a stupid thing?!"

  7. I think you felt the same as me. There wasn't enough depth to it. It relied too much on coincidence. Hmmm... I did not feel strongly enough to love or hate it. It was a mediocre fantasy but when there are books like Mortal Instruments why would you opt for this?
    Loved your honest and thoughtful review.


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