On the morning of her sixteenth birthday, Renée Winters was still an ordinary girl. She spent her summers at the beach, had the perfect best friend, and had just started dating the cutest guy at school. No one she'd ever known had died. But all that changes when she finds her parents dead in the Redwood Forest, in what appears to be a strange double murder.
After the funeral Renée’s wealthy grandfather sends her to Gottfried Academy, a remote and mysterious boarding school in Maine, where she finds herself studying subjects like Philosophy, Latin, and the “Crude Sciences.”
It’s there that she meets Dante Berlin, a handsome and elusive boy to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. As they grow closer, unexplainable things begin to happen, but Renée can’t stop herself from falling in love. It’s only when she discovers a dark tragedy in Gottfried’s past that she begins to wonder if the Academy is everything it seems.
Little does she know, Dante is the one hiding a dangerous secret, one that has him fearing for her life.
I found this book in my local book store; I was drawn in by the cover; which I do like very much. The story sounded very intriguing and I ended up buying it. I found out few days later that I actually did mark this to be read on my Goodreads account.
I am having a hard time writing this review, something about this book was off for me. I read it in few days and when I was done I was still undecided if I liked it or not. I was very much indifferent as to what happened to the character. I did not exhibit much of emotional reaction like I usually do when I am reading a book. I am usually loving the book, or hating it, or annoyed with it, or angry, or combination of different emotions; however with this book there was nothing. I found this strange, because I cannot really say that this book was terrible, because it was not. I think it was more so me than the book. It just did not click for me. I had no connection with the characters; I think that the only thing that kept my interest was the actual story line and not the characters itself. I really did enjoy the story line, it was very good and mysterious, and with few interesting twists.
Renee’s character I found to be very much one dimensional, she had no spunk; I found her to be boring and very slow sometime. I had no emotional connection to her, I really did not care what happened to her, and usually that is strange because as a reader I always get very much so involved into the main characters life. Her reaction to the loss of her parents was fake and forced and not very convincing. The author does not really convey what she is feeling when she loses her parents, but rather she tells you. Those are two different things. This was not the case just with the death of the parent, but also with Renee’s relationship with Dante and other characters.
Overall, I am on fence with this book, it is neither here nor there. So I give this book 3 out of 5.