Review: Isle of Night by Veronica Wolff

Publication Date: September 6th, 2011
NAL Trade
Format: Paperback, 302 pages
RATING: 3 out of 5 Stars
SUMMARY
Is life offering fewer and fewer options? Then join the dead.
When Annelise meets dark and seductive Ronan, he promises her a new life-if she has the courage to chance the unknown. Now, she’s whisked away to a mysterious island and pitted against other female recruits to become a Watcher-girls who are partnered with vampires and assist them in their missions. To survive and become a Watcher, Annelise has to beat out every other girl, but she’s determined to do so, because to fail doesn’t mean dishonor-it means death.

Faced with a non-existent present and consequently, an undetermined future, Annelise felt that Ronan’s proposal was the only bright option in her rather murky horizon. With a promise of a boarding school for the elite and geniuses like her, what could go wrong? Famous last words.

Oh geez. I swear it was like watching a freaking B horror movie where the token blonde girl gets murdered – quite spectacularly at that – because she couldn’t resist going skinny-dipping in the middle of the night…or in Annelise’s case, she couldn’t resist the voodoo-mojo that Ronan was projecting on her.

There are concepts to this book that readers are supposed to just accept, without reason or recourse. I just don’t buy the whole built-in animosity between characters right off the hop. The mean-girls act have never been all that appealing to me to begin with but this book took it to the next level somehow. I can see how the Acris could hate on each other just because they were pitted to eventually eliminate one another in a sort of an organized Battle Royale but I don’t understand the innate loathing from the get go. Seriously. It was playground antics…only more violent.

Vampires exist. Period. Well, hells bells. Where did they come from? And knowing that they do exist, the recruits didn’t even bat an eyelash when they found out the real purpose why they were picked to train as Watchers.

She can kick your ass BUT. Annelise Drew had potential to be a great heroine but her character fell short. I wish that she was more of the dork/geek that the author kept insisting her character was supposed to be. But because she lacked the intelligent development and depth, all I could see was a girl who rarely used her smarts in any endeavour throughout the book. You couldn’t convince me that this girl was supposedly a mathlete beauty because the author didn’t really take the time to highlight her intelligence. I do love Annelise’s spunk and flippant attitude but other than that, the girl just didn’t come through.

I don’t get it. Tell me again why they needed to train girls to become the vampires’ Watchers when they have powerful Tracers at their disposals? It didn’t make sense. Not that I have any objections with girls being the protectors but I wish the author gave me some inclination as to why. Maybe it will be all revealed on the next book *shrugs*. The recruited girls were supposed to have some sort of abilities (hence the reason why they were chosen) but the MC’s power or ability wasn’t really revealed. Did I miss it? If hers was intelligence then…damn. The author was very cunning in subtlety. Just sayin’.

This book didn’t get off to a good start when: After witnessing the senseless, brutal killing of one of the recruits, everyone just kind of went about their businesses like they didn’t just witness something bloody horrific. What’s up with that?

Love interests(?). Ronan the Tracer reminds me of Vampire Academy’s Belikov only less intense and less…hotter. And dude, you wanted to make kissy faces with Drew because she reminded you of your dead sister? Oh by the way, good job on dissin’ her memory by saying that Drew is MORE beautiful than her. Tsk, tsk. I don’t get you, man. Never mind that it’s a hundred shades of creepy.

Master Alcantara. Oy. He can seduce you with one look or the intensity of his gaze will downright creep you out. My reaction was the latter. Sorry.

Verdict.  And I’ll say this with as much credibility as I possibly can. It was meh but I’ll read the next book anyway just because I’m a curious person by nature and I already have a copy.

  • I've been interested to read this book for a while but haven't got the chance to read it and grab a copy. Hope I can read this book soon!

    Your review is AWESOME, Joy! It completely rocks! ♥

  • That cover really didn't interest me at all… great review! It just made me more sure about NOT wanting to read it. LOL. I'm a new gfc follower, BTW? 🙂

  • Oh Joy, I absolutely love your reviews – they're honest and very refreshing. Thanks for sharing this with us. I have heard many mixed things about this book before and that's actually why I took it off my need-to-read-asap-list quite a while ago. Since I'm still interested in finding out whether I'd like this though, I'm still planning to read it, but your review kind of made me happy that I haven't bought a copy yet. 😀

    Carina

  • Thanks, Cyp! Looking forward to it 😉

  • Aw damn, I kinda liked this book. Haha, but the next one's much better! I read it not too long ago, and I totally just fell in love with it! I feel like spoilering you so bad, but, gah. Shall practice restrain. I agree with the Ronan and Alcantara part though. And I can't stand it that Ronan's hot and cold attitude to her. It's either he wants her or not, but he keeps caring for her then pushing her away…But oh well, the next one's better in the romance department! I won't tell you why, but it is! 😀

  • Heh. Yeah but Tiff, you know that I have such a screwed up taste in books. You never know, you might enjoy this anyway. 🙂

  • I love your reviews! I would be lying if I said this one didn't bring a smile to my face a couple of times. I had seen this book around but can't say it ever really caught my interest… Needless to say after reading another AMAZING review by you I probably wont be adding this one to my TBR list just yet.