Tuesday, December 7, 2010

review: Enchanted Ivy by Sarah Beth Durst

pub date: October 12, 2010
publisher: Margaret K. McElderry
pgs: 320
source: library
content: about 5 swear words

blurb from goodreads:
What Lily Carter wants most in the world is to attend Princeton University just like her grandfather. When she finally visits the campus, Grandpa surprises her: She has been selected to take the top-secret Legacy Test. Passing means automatic acceptance to Princeton. Sweet! Lily's test is to find the Ivy Key. But what is she looking for? Where does she start? As she searches, Lily is joined by Tye, a cute college boy with orange and black hair who says he's her guard. That's weird. But things get seriously strange when a gargoyle talks to her. He tells her that there are two Princetons—the ordinary one and a magical one—and the Key opens the gate between them. But there are more secrets that surround Lily. Worse secrets.When Lily enters the magical Princeton, she uncovers old betrayals and new dangers, and a chance at her dream becomes a fight for her life. Soon Lily is caught in a power struggle between two worlds, with her family at its center. In a place where Knights slay monsters, boys are were-tigers, and dragons might be out for blood, Lily will need all of her ingenuity and courage—and a little magic—to unite the worlds and unlock the secrets of her past and her future.

I loved Ms. Durst's previous novel, Ice, a great deal. It was one of my favorite books last year. So I was rather excited about this one.

I found the concept of the story, with the Ivy Key and the gate and the magical Princeton, really cool and original. As well as the mystery surrounding Lily's past and her parents. Awesome world building.

Yet while I found Ms. Durst's world fascinating, I was actually kinda bored while reading the book. I don't know if it was just my mood, but the plot didn't interest me much. I had a hard time caring. I wasn't invested in either of the boys Lily meets, especially since most of the story takes place in two days. Hard to develop a relationship that quickly. At least not a believable one. Tye's insistence that they were soul mates...mmm...not my thing.

The snarky interplay between Jake and Tye was pretty great. They were probably the more fun scenes to read. And Lily was a strong heroine with a good heart.

I enjoyed the book, I just wasn't captivated by it.

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