Review: The Demon's Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan

The Demon's Lexicon (Demons, #1)Nick and his brother, Alan, have spent their lives on the run from magic. Their father was murdered, and their mother was driven mad by magicians and the demons who give them power. The magicians are hunting the Ryves family for a charm that Nick's mother stole -- a charm that keeps her alive -- and they want it badly enough to kill again.
Danger draws even closer when a brother and sister come to the Ryves family for help. The boy wears a demon's mark, a sign of death that almost nothing can erase...and when Alan also gets marked by a demon, Nick is desperate to save him. The only way to do that is to kill one of the magicians they have been hiding from for so long.

Ensnared in a deadly game of cat and mouse, Nick starts to suspect that his brother is telling him lie after lie about their past. As the magicians' Circle closes in on their family, Nick uncovers the secret that could destroy them all.

I've heard a lot about this series, with the third book about to be released I've seen it all over the blogosphere and I though 'Hey! I haven't even read book #1 yet! I need to read it', so I swapped it last week.

I really struggled to get into this book, I was literally picking it up and putting it down all day. I've had a bad stomach bug and had a whole day or relaxing in which I really could have got through three books and reviews but instead I spent all day struggling through this.

So what made this book so hard to get into? I think that the author spent too much time telling us what was going on and explaining things instead of showing us, so a lot of the main characters thoughts were repeated and it got pretty boring after a while. I also thought the pacing was a bit off; There were bits where you thought the action was about to pick up and then suddenly it suddenly slows down again, it got a bit frustrating for me.

Now that the moany bits re out of the way, I'm going to point out that I actually did like this novel, I would not say I really loved it but it was good enough. Apart from major pacing problems everything else was great. The story is original, using popular ideas (summoning demons & corrupt magicians) but pulling them off in an original and enjoyable way. 

I also loved the characters, though Nick reminded me of an increasingly angsty Jace (Mortal Instruments) and I couldn't stop picturing Mae as Ramona from Scott Pilgrim. I especially loved the wisecracks that Jamie and Nick made. Though I started to get annoyed by Nick's angsty emo-ness at some points.

I love me a good romance and while the romance is a little... weird here and there isn't too much of it, I could see it developing.

The story has a lot of twists and turns and halfway though I was saying "This is not good, I know what's going to happen" and at the end I realised that I hadn't known at all!

All in all, the plot and characters are great but there were some serious pacing issues which actually pull this down from a B for me.

Overall rating: D+

Stand alone/series: First in a series

UK Paperback Release: June 2nd 2009 
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Pages: 324
Book obtained via: Swap

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