Title: Half Bad
Author: Sally Green
Series: The Half Bad Trilogy #1
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Pages: 394 (Hardcover)
Average Goodreads Rating: 3.82/5
My Rating: 3/5
Nathan is an abomination; he's half Black Witch and half White Witch. His father is the most dangerous and violent black witch, Marcus. His only hope for survival is to find Marcus and receive the three gifts necessary to become a full Witch.
The hype is strong with this one. I didn't dislike the book, but I didn't like it either. It was just "meh".
The writing was very off-putting. It was simple and childlike. It matches Nathan's simplistic and childlike nature, but it stopped me from really getting into the book. At some points of the novel, it switches to second-person which, again, threw me off.
The premise of the novel itself is very interesting. White witches versus black witches, Nathan being a Half Code, whether or not white witches really are good...It's all very intriguing, but it's the execution of the story where this book falls flat.
The world building wasn't the best. I felt a lot of information was left out. For example, why did the White and Black witches hate each other? There is a brief explanation of the origin of witches, however, the actual cause for this hatred is unknown. Are they just inherently racist towards each other? Did the witches do something to each other? Who knows.
The characters also lacked a lot of depth. They were all very flat, even the main character, Nathan. I wanted to feel bad for him, and at times I did, however I did not connect or relate with him at all. Obviously, he's being tortured and beaten so he shouldn't be super relatable, but there should be some sort of relatability. He completely failed to connect with me. The love story fell quite flat as well. It was very insta-love and didn't seem real. Nathan has a sort of obsession with Annalise and it doesn't play out well. It could have been an interesting "forbidden love" story, but Annalise is such a useless character with no personality whatsoever. Most of the characters just seemed there, adding nothing to the story and not progressing the plot at all. I would have liked for the villains to have some sort of personality, rather than just being evil for the heck of it.
I found the plot to be boring as well. Sure, the ideas are interesting, but nothing really happens. Nathan goes here, he goes there, shit happens, more shit happens. So interesting... It was pretty predictable and halfway through the novel I started skipping words and lines just so it would end faster.
On a related topic, the pacing wasn't great either. In the beginning it just dragged on and then towards the end it became rushed, as if the writer realized she had a deadline to meet and couldn't fit everything she wanted in it. The middle was so slow, I expected some sort of dramatic ending, however, it was incredibly anti-climactic...
So, what's good about this book? The only thing I can think of is Nathan's sarcastic sense of humour that made me chuckle at times. Other than that, nothing. It's not a bad book, it's just not good.
While I am still curious about what happens next, I do not plan to pick up the rest of the series.
Until next time,