Half Lost by Sally Green
I loved Half Bad, the first book in the trilogy. The second, Half Wild, was decent enough. But this? This was an exercise in willpower.
I think I started reading this book about three times before finally finishing, and even then it took an age to get through a measly 340 pages. All the edginess, the intensity I felt towards the the start of the trilogy, was wiped away only to leave behind an over-the-top narrator and an overarching conflict I no longer cared about.
Our main character was the main problem. One could make the claim that Nathan was the way he was due to all the trauma he experienced, but that sort of emotional baggage was never communicated, even though the narration is told through his perspective. He was full of hate and bitterness and thoughts of revenge, yet the emotional intensity had all the depth of a rain puddle. As a result, I just couldn’t bring myself to care about…anything. The battle, the romance, the revenge–I slogged through it all.
Though the last 30 pages or so certainly harkened back to the writing we start with in Half Bad, I still think the whole trilogy could have done with a happier ending. Not all sunshine and rainbows, to be sure, but more sweet and less bitter. That, I think, could have left me with a kinder sentiment to the trilogy as a whole, but now I just wish I had just stuck with the first and let the other two be.