Burn Bright by Marianne de Pierres (Night Creatures, Book 1)
A lyrical, sensual and fascinating story let down by a disjointed plot and vague world building. Your mileage may vary.
There’s something seductive about the way Marianne de Pierres writes, and although I hesitated to pick this book up—not another young adult dark fantasy novel!—once I did I couldn’t put it down…until I got to the middle.
Retra escapes her closed community to search for her brother, who ran away to Ixion two years ago. It’s a mysterious place, where everyone lives for pleasure and newcomers are urged to ‘burn bright’. It’s a place where Retra, conditioned to be silent, calm and obedient, finds herself caught up in the politics and jealousies between the Ripers who promise to guard the young revellers, the various gangs in the city, the dreaded Night Creatures, and rebel factions who know that Ixion is not, after all, just about pleasure.
De Pierres sets the story up beautifully, taking the reader on the same journey as the bewildered Retra, for whom Ixion requires a complete reassessment of everything she knows (or has been taught) thus far. But as the story progresses, De Pierres falls into the common trap of keeping details thin in order to maintain various mysteries of the world she’s creating.
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