Review: Balthazar

2.16.2012
Balthazar by Claudia Gray
Expected publication: March 6th 2012 by HarperTEEN
//Amazon//B&N//The Book Depository// 

Haunted by memories from his first days as a vampire, Balthazar has spent hundreds of years alone—without allies, without love. When he emerges from his isolation to help Skye Tierney, a human girl who once attended Evernight Academy, Balthazar has no idea how dangerous it will be. Skye’s psychic powers have caught the attention of Redgrave, the cruel master vampire responsible for murdering Balthazar and his family four centuries ago. Having learned of Skye’s powers and the remarkable effect her blood has on vampires, he plans to use her for his own evil purposes. As they stand together to fight the evil vampire, Balthazar realizes his lonely world could finally be changed by Skye...just as Redgrave realizes that he can destroy Balthazar once and for all by taking her for his own.

In a story filled with forbidden love and dark suspense, one of the most beloved characters in Claudia Gray’s New York Times bestselling Evernight series will captivate readers with his battle to overcome his past and follow his heart.

Balthazar is one of those books that I know some of my friends would hate, but I found it an enjoyable read. A long time ago, I read Evernight, but I never continued on with the series. I don't think it was because I didn't like it; it was just one of those things I forgot about. 

I've mentioned this before, but I'm not the kind of person who's tired of vampires and werewolves. I still love them just as much as I love any other types of books. (Except Fae books. I love those above all else.) And Gray's vampires work out well. Not all of them are bad, but not all of them are good, either. I like that balance - it's always seemed so unrealistic to me that every single vampire would be bad or every one of them would be good. 

Balthazar tells the story of Balthazar, obviously, and all he goes through as he tries to protect Skye. We get to see how he spent his last hours as a human, how he spent his first hours as a vampire, and plenty of things that happened after that. I wasn't particularly fond of these flashbacks, but at the same time they provide a reason for why Balthazar is so hesitant with Skye and they show just how evil the bad guys really are, so I think they were necessary. 

Balthazar along is enough reason to read this book. The limits he goes to to protect Skye are actually hilarious. (And life-threatening, of course.) It's interesting to read about how he fights his nature, but I also love that not all of his time is spent angsting and trying not to eat Skye. 

I also love that Skye doesn't spend all her time thinking about Balthazar. She knows she has other worries - other vampires trying to use her as a drug, for instance. She's a very strong character, and the best part about her is that she has a hobby. Horseback riding. I hardly ever see characters in YA who have a hobby anymore - it's all DEATH DEATH KISS ATTACK. And while plenty of that is in Balthazar, Gray still found time to fit in that hobby. Which just happened to save Skye more than once. 

My biggest issues lie with the secondary characters. Skye's new friend, her ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend, the teachers at the school . . . I don't think there was a single one of them I liked. Which is a problem, since they're involved in the story quite a bit.

Overall: While I don't think Balthazar is full of suspense like the blurb says, Balthazar is a fun read, and if you liked the Evernight series, you should definitely read this. And if you never read it? You don't really need to have read it. The romance in Balthazar is the typical kind of forbidden romance, nothing new, but somehow, in some way, Gray made me like it. I rooted for Skye and Balthazar through the entire book. 3.5 stars.


~Zoey~
17 comments on "Review: Balthazar"
  1. SO you can read this without having read the Evernight series? I read book 1 of that and I wasn't that much into it. It was just very blah. I've been seeing lots of good stuff about this one though.

    Giselle
    Xpresso Reads

    ReplyDelete
  2. I haven't even thought about reading this book since I didn't read the Evernight series. It's good to know that I don't need to. I have been hearing this is good. I might try to get to it sometime. Great review!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I wish this could have been better. I was pretty iffy with the Evernight series. Since this didn't blow you away, I'll probably hold off on reading it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm dying to read this book! I actually like the series so I should really love this book, since you didn't care for the series but liked the book! Does that make sense? LOL Thanks for the review:)
    jwitt33 at live dot com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hm. I was really sketchy about this book, because it was kindof like the cutoff, but this review has me convinced otherwise! I'll have to try reading this one of these days!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow, I'm glad that the main character didn't spend so much time obsessing over the male protagonist like some other books =___=

    ReplyDelete
  7. I borrowed Evernight from the library but didn't get to read it before the loan expired! I should go and borrow it again .______. Great review by the way :D

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have mixed feelings about the Evernight series, but I want to read this one anyway. Your review just makes me want to read it that much more. Great review! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  9. The idea of the last hours as a human and first hours as a vamp, is an interesting take, I would like to read this one

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'd loved the Evernight series so looks like another one for the wishlist.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I read all the Evernight books and I really want this one!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. seems to be a great book! loved the review

    ReplyDelete
  13. This is going to be so good. I was so hoping she would write a book from his POV and glad she followed through. I the TOP of my TBR pile. Thanks for the review.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I have not read the Evernight series but I had wanted to. This book sounds good also. I will give it a try maybe when my TBR pile is smaller. LOL!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I think this is the book I saw today at Walmart (for some reason they have a good selection of YA novels) and I almost bought it, but decided to come check out reviews first.

    I, much like you, don't tire of the vampires and werewolves - I haven't really read a dominantly fae book yet, but I'm going to soon. Either way, I love the supernatural/paranormal books. Fantasy is awesome.

    Anyways, I am definitely going to have to check out this series. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I Haven't read yet Balthazar :( I really want to read that because I love evernight series

    ReplyDelete

2.16.2012

Review: Balthazar

Balthazar by Claudia Gray
Expected publication: March 6th 2012 by HarperTEEN
//Amazon//B&N//The Book Depository// 

Haunted by memories from his first days as a vampire, Balthazar has spent hundreds of years alone—without allies, without love. When he emerges from his isolation to help Skye Tierney, a human girl who once attended Evernight Academy, Balthazar has no idea how dangerous it will be. Skye’s psychic powers have caught the attention of Redgrave, the cruel master vampire responsible for murdering Balthazar and his family four centuries ago. Having learned of Skye’s powers and the remarkable effect her blood has on vampires, he plans to use her for his own evil purposes. As they stand together to fight the evil vampire, Balthazar realizes his lonely world could finally be changed by Skye...just as Redgrave realizes that he can destroy Balthazar once and for all by taking her for his own.

In a story filled with forbidden love and dark suspense, one of the most beloved characters in Claudia Gray’s New York Times bestselling Evernight series will captivate readers with his battle to overcome his past and follow his heart.

Balthazar is one of those books that I know some of my friends would hate, but I found it an enjoyable read. A long time ago, I read Evernight, but I never continued on with the series. I don't think it was because I didn't like it; it was just one of those things I forgot about. 

I've mentioned this before, but I'm not the kind of person who's tired of vampires and werewolves. I still love them just as much as I love any other types of books. (Except Fae books. I love those above all else.) And Gray's vampires work out well. Not all of them are bad, but not all of them are good, either. I like that balance - it's always seemed so unrealistic to me that every single vampire would be bad or every one of them would be good. 

Balthazar tells the story of Balthazar, obviously, and all he goes through as he tries to protect Skye. We get to see how he spent his last hours as a human, how he spent his first hours as a vampire, and plenty of things that happened after that. I wasn't particularly fond of these flashbacks, but at the same time they provide a reason for why Balthazar is so hesitant with Skye and they show just how evil the bad guys really are, so I think they were necessary. 

Balthazar along is enough reason to read this book. The limits he goes to to protect Skye are actually hilarious. (And life-threatening, of course.) It's interesting to read about how he fights his nature, but I also love that not all of his time is spent angsting and trying not to eat Skye. 

I also love that Skye doesn't spend all her time thinking about Balthazar. She knows she has other worries - other vampires trying to use her as a drug, for instance. She's a very strong character, and the best part about her is that she has a hobby. Horseback riding. I hardly ever see characters in YA who have a hobby anymore - it's all DEATH DEATH KISS ATTACK. And while plenty of that is in Balthazar, Gray still found time to fit in that hobby. Which just happened to save Skye more than once. 

My biggest issues lie with the secondary characters. Skye's new friend, her ex-boyfriend and his new girlfriend, the teachers at the school . . . I don't think there was a single one of them I liked. Which is a problem, since they're involved in the story quite a bit.

Overall: While I don't think Balthazar is full of suspense like the blurb says, Balthazar is a fun read, and if you liked the Evernight series, you should definitely read this. And if you never read it? You don't really need to have read it. The romance in Balthazar is the typical kind of forbidden romance, nothing new, but somehow, in some way, Gray made me like it. I rooted for Skye and Balthazar through the entire book. 3.5 stars.


~Zoey~

17 comments:

  1. SO you can read this without having read the Evernight series? I read book 1 of that and I wasn't that much into it. It was just very blah. I've been seeing lots of good stuff about this one though.

    Giselle
    Xpresso Reads

    ReplyDelete
  2. I haven't even thought about reading this book since I didn't read the Evernight series. It's good to know that I don't need to. I have been hearing this is good. I might try to get to it sometime. Great review!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I wish this could have been better. I was pretty iffy with the Evernight series. Since this didn't blow you away, I'll probably hold off on reading it.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm dying to read this book! I actually like the series so I should really love this book, since you didn't care for the series but liked the book! Does that make sense? LOL Thanks for the review:)
    jwitt33 at live dot com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hm. I was really sketchy about this book, because it was kindof like the cutoff, but this review has me convinced otherwise! I'll have to try reading this one of these days!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wow, I'm glad that the main character didn't spend so much time obsessing over the male protagonist like some other books =___=

    ReplyDelete
  7. I borrowed Evernight from the library but didn't get to read it before the loan expired! I should go and borrow it again .______. Great review by the way :D

    ReplyDelete
  8. I have mixed feelings about the Evernight series, but I want to read this one anyway. Your review just makes me want to read it that much more. Great review! Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  9. The idea of the last hours as a human and first hours as a vamp, is an interesting take, I would like to read this one

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'd loved the Evernight series so looks like another one for the wishlist.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I read all the Evernight books and I really want this one!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. seems to be a great book! loved the review

    ReplyDelete
  13. This is going to be so good. I was so hoping she would write a book from his POV and glad she followed through. I the TOP of my TBR pile. Thanks for the review.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I have not read the Evernight series but I had wanted to. This book sounds good also. I will give it a try maybe when my TBR pile is smaller. LOL!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I think this is the book I saw today at Walmart (for some reason they have a good selection of YA novels) and I almost bought it, but decided to come check out reviews first.

    I, much like you, don't tire of the vampires and werewolves - I haven't really read a dominantly fae book yet, but I'm going to soon. Either way, I love the supernatural/paranormal books. Fantasy is awesome.

    Anyways, I am definitely going to have to check out this series. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I Haven't read yet Balthazar :( I really want to read that because I love evernight series

    ReplyDelete