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Review: Juliet Immortal by Stacey Jay

As a new trend goes, retellings come and go in fits and starts...we've recently gone through a mass retellings of fairy-tales, then Greek mythologies, but one that seems to stay with us are the retellings of Shakespeare stories. Might as well right? Better than another retelling of Dracula. And from a retelling POV this one was original. At least Stacey Jay didn't just recycle the story and put it in modern just well was a retelling. Where my blasé attitude stems from, I'll put it in perspective via an analogy, which I so love. It's like a remix of a great song, think BLACK EYED PEAS – The Time (Dirty Bit) which is a sampling of Time Of My Life by Bill Medley & Jennifer Warnes. We've gone from “Don't put Baby in the corner...” an endless love to...drunk escapades and some sl*t puking in the corner. The song may hit, I might want to jump around the house like a lunatic when it comes on – but the BLACK EYED PEAS don't own it. It didn't manifest out of their genius – and the beat might hit, it won't chime endless in the consciousness of a generation. Yeah, yeah, I know big words, some are probably thinking “stuff it”. Yet, I must say IMHO, you can't be EPIC with a retelling. But, it can be romantic and entertaining and compelling, which JULIET IMMORTAL was.

The story of Romeo and Juliet is retold in JULIET IMMORTAL. Dark forces are pitted against the light as the dark strives to end the love of soul mates by turning one soul mate against the other in pursuit of eternal life. The story of Romeo and his young bride Juliet in reality was much different from the tale Shakespeare told. Young lovers, from rival households, they did fall in love, against the wishes of their family and they did marry – but shortly after their wedding vows, Romeo killed Juliet in pursuit of eternal life. As Juliet bled to death, she cursed Romeo's name and was given the task, by the light, to reverse all the damage he would do as an agent of the dark. Her ultimate goal – bring soul mates together in true love and not have their stories end like hers. You would believe it to be easy, but Romeo is determined to bring souls over to his side and he doesn't play fair.

When Juliet is brought to life this last time – something is different. She is having trouble contacting her handler, a woman she calls Nurse and she doesn't seem to have the powers she is usually imbued with. On top of the strange environment, she also is helped along by a very handsome young man who she is instantly attracted to even though she knows she must fight her feelings. There is no way she can have feelings for a boy, she isn't even in possession of her own body and his aura might hint that he is one of her soul mates...nothing is going as it should for Juliet – even Romeo is acting strangely and hinting at them working together. Romeo her sworn enemy, her soul mate.

First let me tell you what I liked about JULIET IMMORTAL, I did like the twist, I thought it was rather sick and not all flowers and petticoats. Love that. I liked Juliet's character, I thought she had spunk. I thought the story line was compelling and I was flipping through the pages to get to the end. The author also kept me on my toes with twists in the plot. I think she did do an excellent job in this retelling.

What I didn't like about the book was the underlying concept, it wasn't as believable as I would have liked. Just in the end it didn't click, it was just like all of a sudden the dark side was like WHOOSH and over whelmed everything and gave up on their pursuit without a real explanation. Just a few more t's had to be crossed – and the ending was just, well, aligned too well. My overall thoughts are, while this book was entertaining and kept me going, it seems like it was just missing a little something...

For language and sexual references along with violence it is recommended that readers have a bit of maturity before partaking. Recommended for fans of Romeo and Juliet and retellings in general. This might be a good transition from contemporary young adult romance to paranormal romance.

Young Adult Novel

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Simcha said...

I'm undecided about this book. I've enjoyed several retelling of Romeo and Juliet but this one may be too "out there" for me. I also have a hard time connecting with immortal book characters. But if I read enough positive reviews I must end up giving the book a try.

Anna said...

Great review, I love Romeo and Juliet, but I'd love to read this different take on everything. It sounds really interesting.

Chrizette said...

This one is in my TBR pile - can't wait till I get to it . . . and LOVE the cover!

MamaKitty said...

I have to say that I really like the idea of such a different version of R&J. I'm sick of the "revamped" versions. I don't want another R&J in a different time. I want something that's along the same lines, but vastly different. And I have to admit, I kinda like the idea of Romeo killing Juliet for immortality. What can I say? I'm twisted like that.

fairypenguin said...

I agree with Chrizette, what a wonderful cover! I like retellings, but Romeo and Juliet was one of my least favorite books ever. I didn't find the original story romantic in the least, but more or less just...depressing. And kind of stupid. But that's just me.

Book Crook Liza said...

I really want to read this one! I often time like re-tellings, because it's fun to see different spins on timeless stories. Great review!

Ninja Girl said...

Hey Parajunkee!
I think we had a moment of book blogger jinx :) Just kidding. I just posted a review of Juliet Immortal as well (am jealous, though, b/c yours is much better than mine :p)
Anyway, I enjoyed your review, agreed with you about a lot (especially the ending), but like you said, I thought the book was good overall.
Ninja Girl

Shanella said...

Oooh ... not sure if this is my style, though, I do love a good retelling... I just don't like TOO neat and tidy.

Tia said...

Great review. I generally like re-tellings. I just recently got this book! I'm looking forward to reading it.

Tia @ Falling For Books

Amy said...

Great review! Definitely adding this one to my TBR pile, I love a love story with a twist. Thank you for sharing! :)

June G said...

This sounds like a really weird take on the story. I am attracted to the premise and I'm willing to give it a shot. Thanks for your thoughts on it.

Patti (Caught in a FAB Romance) said...

This was not even on my radar until a few days ago but I'm adding it to my "want" list; it sounds like a good twist

Mari - Escape In A Book said...

I'm loving the sound on this take on Romeo and Juliet and I have to admit that I've never read the original story.

I LOVED your analogy by the way(and I love the original song and I like the BEP version).

Nimue said...

Great review, makes me want to read the book even more.

aLmYbNeNr said...

Excellent review! I'm really looking forward to reading this one and even though some parts didn't work for you, you really upped my excitement for this book.

The Musings of ALMYBNENR

Karen said...

I'm kind of torn as to whether I want to read this or not. I've been enjoying a few recent retellings but the reviews haven't been the greatest. This may be one of those books I don't rush out to buy but will get to it at some point.
Love the new Halloween design!

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