From Goodreads: Life hasn't been easy on sixteen-year-old Emma Conner, so a new start in New York may be just the change she needs. But the posh Upper East Side prep school she has to attend? Not so much. Friendly faces are few and far between, except for one that she's irresistibly drawn to - Brendan Salinger, the guy with the rock-star good looks and the richest kid in school, who might just be her very own white knight. But even when Brendan inexplicably turns cold, Emma can't stop staring. Ever since she laid eyes on him, strange things have been happening. Streetlamps go out wherever she walks, and Emma's been having the oddest dreams: visions of herself in past lives - visions that warn her to stay away from Brendan. Or else.
My Rating: 3.5 hearts
Thoughts on the Novel: I requested Cara Lynn Shultz’s Spellbound on a whim, not knowing anything about it but captivated by its unique cover. While reading the book, I thought at first that I wouldn’t like it because Spellbound contains a bunch of clichés such as the gay best friend, the great looking guy, the mean girl threatened by the presence of a new girl, etc. So, it was a little unexpected that I actually ended up enjoying the novel.
Emma was a great protagonist and it was easy to root for her. Despite having a difficult life, she’s not moping about it. Rather, she manages to be strong and continues to fight for what she wants, even standing up to bullies in the process.
I also liked Emma’s relationship with hot, rich and adorable Brendan (where can I get a guy like this?). Normally, I’m not a fan of instant love but the romance in this case worked because even though the two are soulmates, Shultz still took the time to develop Emma and Brendan’s relationship at a reasonable pace. I felt however that in the latter half of Spellbound, the focus on the romance sort of overshadowed the paranormal aspects of the book like reincarnation and magic.
A book that starts off slowly but ends up having a heart pounding climax, Spellbound was released by Harlequin Teen on June 28, 2011.
Comments About the Cover: I love that a scene from the book was captured in such an enchanting way. The girl running, the bridge extending into the background and the shards of glass that seem to fly out at you all stand out against the black background and beg the reader to pick the up book.
In exchange for an honest review, this ARC was received from the publisher (Harlequin Teen) for free via NetGalley.