Book: The Advice Girl by L.A. Shaw
Series: Dalara #1
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Romance
Available Formats: Ebook & Paperback
Publication Date: March 31st, 2011How Did I Get This Book: From Author, For ReviewPreview Book: Read the PrologueDescription: Kira and Sophia have been best friends since they were five years old. They share an apartment together, and tell each other everything.
Everyone loves Sophia, and she is often called the advice girl by people who know her. Kira believes she knows her friend better than anyone. But in a mysterious accident, Sophia loses her life.
Kira is mourning the devastating loss when she finds a note addressed to her from beyond the grave. Kira realizes she doesn't know her friend as well as she thought, as she starts to uncover the truth. She falls into a deep depression, confused and lost, until a visit from a strange man puts her in the middle of a war between two secret societies. Kira soon understands that she is in danger, and doesn't know who to trust. She has to fight for her own life now.
The Advice Girl is an incredibly interesting book. There are assassins, romance and action; but what really keeps the ball rolling is the suspense. The Advice Girl is full of questions to be answered; questions that keep you on the edge of your seat. Things like, “why is she so special?”, “can we trust these people” and “what do they really want with her?”. The suspense in this book is top-notch and will keep you turning the pages to find the answers.
The relationship between Sophia and Kira was incredibly believable. I think everyone can relate to a friendship like theirs; that person who knows you best, knows your deepest secrets, the one who has seen you at your best and your worst. The friendship between these two provided a great foundation for the story. You could understand Kira’s heartache over Sophia and you desperately wanted them reunited. Without that relationship, without that emotional connection, the story would not have to same weight to it.
I did have some issues with the relationship between Sophia and Ethan. While I am glad that they formed a romantic relationship, they seemed to move at light speed. I mean one minute they are chatting it up online, then they meet and two days later they are professing their love. I am all for romantic storylines, but this one was just too rushed.
In connection with the rather quick romance, I found a few of the plot points to be somewhat unbelievable - the main one, being why Markus (leader of the Vindicated Saints) didn’t go after Sophia in the beginning. The reason the book gives is as follows:
“the assassin we assigned to her was out best, but he was also the most passionate and slightly insane. So maybe the reason he hasn’t contacted us yet has something to do with the fact that he was so wrapped up in the ritual he set the fire before he could get out in time.”
I just don’t buy this. If they were really set on killing Sophia, then they would have been sure she was dead. The assassin would not have gotten too excited during the process and accidentally killed himself.
I thought the writing was beautiful, but some of the dialog seemed off. Especially the dialog between the Vindicated Saints; the way they talked did not sound realistic. However, like I said, the writing itself was beautiful. The way Shaw describes things is wonderful; it is incredibly easy to picture the story inside you head and to feel what the characters are going through. She has a wonderful way with words.
I will say that I wish things could have been fleshed out more. I felt like we only tapped into the surface of things and that there could have been, should have been, so much more to the story.
On a side note, I am not really sure why The Advice Girl is billed as a young adult story, it comes off more as a suspense/paranormal romance book. The romance is certainly on the light side, more romantic than anything else, but I would still lean more towards Paranormal Romance than Young Adult. Sophia and Kira are the youngest characters in the book and they are both already out of college.
Overall, I would say that The Advice Girl was an exciting, quick read. I did have a few issues with the story, but it was certainly still enjoyable. I am looking forward to reading the next book in the series, which will hopefully include more suspense, excitement, action and romance!
"Love you too," I repeated automatically, halfway out the front door, not knowing it would be the last thing I said to her."
"My world had stopped, but no one else's had."
"I looked around and found the home shopping network lady trying to sell me a brand name purse at a discounted price. It was cute, but I scoffed at her anyway and turned the television off."
"Put some clothes on woman, do you want to die naked as well?"
"Women are capable of breaking your heart without even knowing it."
"Absolutely divine, she thought, my guardian angel is a real, living, breathing human being."
"Absolutely dangerous, he thought, this angel will be the death of me."
"She drew in a sharp breath of panic, the realization that she had just committed murder swept over her, and she looked at me. I knew what this look meant, and I knew my friend was about to break down."