Review: Endure by Carrie Jones

 

Title: Endure

Author: Carrie Jones

Publisher:  Bloomsbury USA

ISBN: 978-1599905549

 

May Contain Spoilers

From Amazon:

It’s all-out war (and no-holds-barred romance) in the climactic conclusion to Carrie Jones’s bestselling series.

Zara is at the center of an impending apocalypse. True, she’s successfully rescued Nick from Valhalla, but it simply isn’t enough. Evil pixies are ravaging Bedford, and they need much more than one great warrior; they need an army. Zara isn’t sure what her role is anymore. She’s not just fighting for her friends; she’s also a pixie queen. And to align her team of pixies with the humans she loves will be one of her greatest battles yet. Especially since she can’t even reconcile her growing feelings for her pixie king . . .

Unexpected turns, surprising revelations, and one utterly satisfying romantic finale make Endure a thrilling end to this series of bestsellers.

Review:

I have mixed feelings about the final volume of Carrie Jones’ NEED series.  Endure is a page turner, but despite the rapid pacing, there was something missing for me.  The earlier books in the series introduced a scary new paranormal creature to me – Pixies.  Prior to reading Need, when I conjured pixies in my mind, they were little impish creatures, hardly worthy of concern.  This series charged that vision into a nightmare.  Large, powerful pixies, ruled by an all consuming need, turned out to be pretty frightening after all, especially when paired with an isolated, snowy landscape.  I loved the Maine setting, and the pixies,whispering enticingly from the shelter of the woods, freaked me out.

In Endure, Zara has sacrificed her humanity to save Nick from Valhalla, and here is my major dislike of this story.  Nick has turned his back on Zara, and now considers her a monster.  I just wanted him to get over himself!  Dude, Zara gave up everything to bring your sorry butt back to life, so the least you could have done was thank her.  Geez!  Instead, Nick puts on a pout, tells Zara he doesn’t know who she is anymore, and treats her like…well, a pixie.  Really?  This is how you display your love to the brave young woman who was willing to give up everything for you?  Who was willing to face her nightmare opponents head on, to save you? So disappointing!

I liked Astley better than Nick, and that surprised me.  Up until this volume, I loved Nick.  He is so bad ass.  He’s a werewolf, and until his visit to Valhalla, he would have done anything to protect Zara and his friends.  Just like she was willing to do for him.  Until all of that turned out to be a lie.  Then Zara was left with Astley, a kind and good pixie.  A kind and good pixie king.  The kind of guy who accepts you for who, and what, you are.  Astley did not care whether Zara was pixie or human, and that’s when I jumped onboard with Team Astley. He was always there for her, whether she wanted him to be or not.  He was always supportive, always willing to put himself in harm’s way to keep her safe.  Zara wasn’t the only one willing to takes risks for those she loved, and that’s what endeared Astley to me.  Nick, you can learn a few lessons from him.

Romantic triangle and personality shifts aside, the other problem I had with Endure was the sheer density of the plot.  Pretty much every plot device is packed into this book, from evil, psychopathic bad guys, to global goose chases, to cataclysmic shifts in weather patterns,  to Norse gods, giants, weres, elves, and…well, I’m sure you get my drift.  There was just too much for me to absorb at times, and it made the plot feel cluttered.  Sometimes, too much of a good thing is just too much.

Overall, I enjoyed the NEED series very much.  The ending left me satisfied, content that Zara and her friends had saved the world from evil pixies, prophesies, and the rage of Loki.  I’m looking forward to seeing Carrie’s next project, because I find her writing style compelling, and I can identify with her characters.

Grade: B-

Available in both Print and Digital

Review copy provided by publisher

 

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Interview with Carrie Jones, Author of Endure

I’m delighted to have Carrie Jones, author of the NEED series, back for another round of interrogation.  NEED is one of the first YA paranormal series that I picked up, and it showed me how scary pixies can be.  I mean, really – pixies?!  Yes, pixies!  They are evil, and scary, and dangerous, and Carrie’s vision of pixies totally rocks out.  I am sad that one of my favorite series has come to an end, but I am looking forward to future projects from Carrie.  Let’s see what she has to say about Endure, the series finale for NEED.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about Endure?

[Carrie Jones] Endure is about a group of friends trying to save the world from evil pixies who are trying to start the Norse version of an apocalypse.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What was the most challenging aspect of writing this book?

[Carrie Jones] It was hard to let go. It’s the last book and I am terribly in love with all the characters – even the bad ones – so it was hard to stop writing, to stop revising, to let it go free. Hold on. I have to go get a tissue.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Zara?

[Carrie Jones] Kick-ass former pacifist

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are three things Nick would never have in his pocket?

[Carrie Jones] Ha! That’s such a funny question.

Strudel – far too gooey

Dog whistle – far too annoying

Wolfsbane – far too lethal

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Zara’s single most prized possession?

[Carrie Jones] Her Amnesty International Membership pin. Woot! She may kill pixies, but she is still pro human rights.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What are your greatest creative influences?

[Carrie Jones] I am heavily influenced by music, by Doctor Who (Should I admit that?), and I tend to troll around the woods where I live, which is by a national park. Oh… and eavesdropping. I am always always eavesdropping. Someone will eventually notice and beat me up I am sure.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Carrie Jones] My brain.

My fingers.

Words?

That’s really it. I will write anywhere on anything – even skin. My own skin! Do NOT imagine some horrible Hannibal Lechter scenario here.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Carrie Jones] I wear mismatched socks and they are hard to knock off, but…. Hm…. I loved Sherman Alexie’s FIRST INDIAN ON THE MOON, which I just reread. I think my socks pretty much fell off on their own accord during that one. They sort of slinked really.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you had to pick one book that turned you on to reading, which would it be?

[Carrie Jones] I’ve been reading since I was two, so I don’t actually remember. I am so sorry! I feel like such a failure for not being able to answer this. I read all the time when I was little because we were poor and lived in the woods and didn’t have cable. So, I would read absolutely everything. I think the books that made me the happiest back then were A WRINKLE IN TIME and embarrassingly enough this book called ILLUSIONS, which was about a reluctant messiah and very New Agey. I think it was because those books both made me believe that there could be magic in science and math and every day life that I loved them so much.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?

[Carrie Jones] I walk my dogs. A lot. And I kayak. And I cook. And then I imagine zombie invasions.

That sounds soooo boring, doesn’t it?

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Carrie Jones] The best way is Facebook right now. I’ve maxed out on my friends but I’ve someone started an author page, so I’m trying to cross post. Or by commenting on my Livejournal. Or you can go to my website. Any of those. I am best at Facebook though. I babble too much for Twitter.

http://www.facebook.com/carriejonesbooks

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Carrie-Jones/59917341808

www.carriejonesbooks.com

https://twitter.com/#!/carriejonesbook

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thanks!!


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