Wednesday, January 12, 2011
The Lost Saint by Bree Despain
This review first appeared in the Jan 11, 2010 issue of The Syracuse Islander Newspaper
Click here to read my interview with Bree.
Are you looking for a good series to get lost in during the winter months ahead? I recommend The Dark Divine series written by Bree Despain.
Despain says that she uses the paranormal as a metaphor for themes in her book that are hard to express. “The Dark Divine is a modern young adult exploration of The Prodigal Son with a paranormal romance twist,” she says.
When I attended the launch event of The Lost Saint in December, I wasn’t surprised to see a mix of teens and adults in line to have her sign their copies. In the gap left by the conclusion of the popular Twilight series, readers have latched onto this paranormal romance that began with The Dark Divine in 2009.
The trilogy when Grace Divine, daughter of the local pastor, re-discovers Daniel Kalbi—the one person that she never thought to see again. The night that Daniel disappeared from her life, Grace found her brother Jude covered in his own blood. She must decide where her loyalty lies, to the mysterious Daniel and the attraction to him that she cannot deny, or to her brother, who is hiding secrets of his own. Grace’s decision could cause her to lose something of even greater importance than those she loves; it could cost her the price of her soul.
In The Lost Saint Grace has to deal with new issues. Her decisions in the first book have unforeseen repercussions. With Jude missing and Daniel trying to protect Grace from herself, the romance and the action that readers loved in The Dark Divine escalate. Talbot is a new character that Despain describes as Clark Kent with a dangerous side. She says, “He looks like a dimple-cheeked farm boy, but underneath his vast collection of flannel shirts is a guy with a pretty intense past and some secret abilities.” Talbot offers to help Grace when Daniel seems to want only to hold her back from reaching her potential. Will she be able to break free of the inner struggles that plague her long enough to get Jude back and prove that she truly does love Daniel?
What to Expect:
Teens will relate to the struggles Grace has with her family, her relationships and her humanity. The books have crossover appeal and parents will enjoy reading them in tandem with their teens.
The Lost Saint is a clean romance with situations that will appeal to teens but are handled with a finesse that most parents will approve of. There is a small amount of profanity and a moderate amount of violence in the novel that are tied to the battle that Grace has with the “wolf” inside of her.
The ending glues all of the missing pieces of the novel together, and then shatters it into pieces in preparation for the final book—just how I like a middle book to end. The conclusion of the Dark Divine Series is expected to release in December of 2011.
Publisher: EgmontUSA, Published December 28th 2010,
Hardcover, 416 pages