September 30, 2014 by mmileti
Published: September 22nd, 2014 by Eliza Crewe
This post contains some spoilers for Cracked, the previous novel in the Soul Eaters series. You can find my review of Cracked here:
Meda’s back. This time, she has a friend.
The battle is over; the choice has been made. Meda Melange has officially hung up her monstrous mantle and planted her feet firmly on the holy and righteous path of a Crusader-in-training. Or, at least, she’s willing to give it a shot. It helps that the Crusaders are the only thing standing between her and the demon hordes who want her dead.
The problem is, the only people less convinced than Meda of her newfound role as Good Girl are the very Crusaders she’s trying to join. So when a devilishly handsome half-demon boy offers escape, how’s a girl supposed to say “no?”
After all, everyone knows a good girl’s greatest weakness is a bad boy.
In the middle of reading Eliza Crewe’s debut novel Cracked, the first novel in the Soul Eaters series, I found out that Crewe’s publisher Strange Chemistry was going out of business. I have read and enjoyed many of Strange Chemistry’s (a YA imprint of Angry Robot) novels, but I was especially horrified that I might never get to read the rest of the Soul Eaters series. I had finally found a YA novel that hooked me from the first page, and had a heroine so amazingly original, sarcastic, and strong that I could not imagine never getting to see the rest of her story. Luckily Crewe decided to independently publish the second installment in the series, Crushed, and I have the honor of participating in the blog tour for the book!
Often the second novel in a series is slightly disappointing to the reader, especially when the first novel is so wonderful that it raises expectations to an unreasonable level. I am pleasantly surprised to conclude that Crushed contains all the elements I adored about Crewe’s writing in Cracked, but now her writing has become much more refined and capable of making the reader feel extreme sympathy for Meda, as well as giving a better understanding of her world building. The plot also flows a bit more naturally than it did in the first novel, and the events of the story line are particularly shocking and extreme. Meda’s situation is also more desperate and complicated than ever, and I found myself entirely engrossed in her story from start to finish.
Crewe is especially skilled at breaking free of the clichés that are common in YA fantasy, which allows her story lines and characters to be completely unpredictable. Her writing is refreshing to someone that reads as much of the genre as I do, in addition to being extremely entertaining. Though Meda’s sarcastic and morally ambiguous nature is no longer shocking by the second novel in the series, Crewe somehow manages to keep her protagonist fresh and mercurial; Meda is constantly growing and changing as a character, which makes her all the more fascinating, and still able to make me laugh out loud with her sardonic commentary.
I would recommend this series to anyone who enjoys urban fantasy, whether or not they usually read YA novels. I would especially recommend Crushed, as it takes an already great story line and makes it absolutely amazing. I am confident that anyone that enjoyed the first installment in the series will be completely enamored with this novel. I cannot wait to see what Crewe has in store for the third novel of Soul Eaters series. She is definitely a writer to watch!
My rating: 8.5/10
I received a copy of this novel from the author in return for an honest review.
Eliza Crewe always thought she’d be a lawyer, and even went so far as to complete law school. But as they say, you are what you eat, and considering the number of books Eliza has devoured since childhood, it was inevitable she’d end up in the literary world. She abandoned the lawyer-plan to instead become a librarian and now a writer.
While she’s been filling notebooks with random scenes for years, Eliza didn’t seriously commit to writing an entire novel until the spring of 2011, when she and her husband bought a house. With that house came a half-hour commute, during which Eliza decided she needed something to think about other than her road-rage. Is it any surprise she wrote a book about a bloodthirsty, people-eating monster?
Eliza has lived in Illinois, Edinburgh, and Las Vegas, and now lives in North Carolina with her husband, her hens, her angry, talking, stuffed dwarf giraffe, and a sweet, mute, pantomiming bear. She likes to partially complete craft projects, free-range her hens, and take long walks.
Connect with Eliza:
You can follow the rest of the blog tour here: http://www.elizacrewe.com/blog-tour.html