By: Melissa Darnell
Published By: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: Oct. 25, 2011
Series: The Clann (#1)
Reading Level: Young Adult
Buy the Book: Amazon
Goodreads Summary: Savannah Colbert has never known why she's so hated by the kids of the Clann. Nor can she deny her instinct to get close to Clann golden boy Tristan Coleman. Especially when she recovers from a strange illness and the attraction becomes nearly irresistible. It's as if he's a magnet, pulling her gaze, her thoughts, even her dreams. Her family has warned her to have nothing to do with him, or any members of the Clann. But when Tristan is suddenly everywhere she goes, Savannah fears she's destined to fail.
For years, Tristan has been forbidden to even speak to Savannah Colbert. Then Savannah disappears from school for a week and comes back…different, and suddenly he can't stay away. Boys seem intoxicated just from looking at her. His own family becomes stricter than ever. And Tristan has to fight his own urge to protect her, to be near her no matter the consequences….
I was drawn to this book because of its cover and its synopsis. Magic, secrets, forbidden love...Crave promised all of these great aspects of a paranormal story. I had high hopes for this book, but in the end I found myself a bit let down.
Savannah Colbert has spent her entire life in Jacksonville, a small East Texas town ruled by the Clann. Although she used to be friends with Clann members, including Tristan Coleman, they were forbidden from speaking in the fourth grade. Since then, Savannah has stuck with a small group of non-Clann friends, though she still didn't feel like she truly belonged. And then a sudden illness sends Savannah's life spiraling in a new direction. Suddenly she's being given explanations that couldn't possibly be true...only they are. As Savannah tries to deal with their implications, she can't help but find herself drawn to Tristan more and more, despite what her family might want. And maybe, just maybe, he wants her as well. But would the consequences for giving in to him be disastrous?
Like many books, Crave has its strong and weak points. It took me some time to get into this story. After Savannah's illness, I was hoping that things would pick up, and they did, but only for a while. Then things became more intense again toward the end. However, there was a long portion in the middle that seemed very bogged down with day-to-day events - namely, Savannah's work with the Charmers. I think that some of the more mundane activities could have been omitted, as well as some of Savannah's worry; at some points I found myself thinking that I had just read the same exact passage a few pages before. In addition, I was unsure sometimes as to whether I was reading a paranormal or contemporary book. I would have liked to have seen the paranormal/magical aspects of the story fleshed out a little more.
However, there were some things I did enjoy about this book. Crave is narrated by both Tristan and Savannah, and I liked seeing their dual perspectives. Savannah is a strong character who does try to do the right thing, both for herself and for others. While she's not immune to worry and moments of self-pity, she's also not afraid to stand up for herself. There was also the romance aspect of this book. Tristan was incredibly endearing, and some of the moments between him and Savannah are very sweet. I also liked some of the minor characters, especially Savannah's friend Anne, whose no-nonsense attitude but loyalty made her a friend you would want to have, and Tristan's sister Emily, whose intelligence and caring gets Tristan out of more than one scrape. Also, even though Crave is the first book in a trilogy, it doesn't end with a complete cliffhanger; events are wrapped up, though the story is far from over.
Even though I had some issues with this book, the premise behind it is still interesting and I think that the next book has the possibility of being more exciting. If you like a sweet romance sprinkled with a dash of magic, then Crave will appeal to you.