(Cover picture courtesy of Goodreads.)
An impossible romance.
To save the life of the boy she loves, Jacinda did the unthinkable: She betrayed the most closely-guarded secret of her kind. Now she must return to the protection of her pride knowing she might never see Will again—and worse, that because his mind has been shaded, Will’s memories of that fateful night and why she had to flee are gone.
Back home, Jacinda is greeted with hostility and must work to prove her loyalty for both her sake and her family’s. Among the few who will even talk to her are Cassian, the pride’s heir apparent who has always wanted her, and her sister, Tamra, who has been forever changed by a twist of fate. Jacinda knows that she should forget Will and move on—that if he managed to remember and keep his promise to find her, it would only endanger them both. Yet she clings to the hope that someday they will be together again. When the chance arrives to follow her heart, will she risk everything for love?
Unfortunately, Vanish by Sophie Jordan suffers from Book 2 Syndrome: it does nothing but set up the third book. Seriously despite my love of Firelight all that happens in this book could have essentially been told over 100 pages, not nearly three hundred. Of course there’s a lot of pressure on YA writers to write trilogies these days, but in all honesty Sophie Jordan probably could have just cut down on the fluff and made a longer sequel that concludes Jacinda’s story.
You can’t in all honesty call the plot of Vanish fast paced, but I suppose you could call it consistent. Consistently boring, that is. There is a little character development to make up for the complete lack of action, but the disastrous attempts at a bizarre sort of love triangle as well as Jacinda’s general moping around make it a painful 294 pages. All that happens in this is that Miram gets kidnapped and Will shows up again to learn that something mildly terrible has happened to Jacinda because of Cassian. Did I mention that there’s a lot of moping about Will? It’s like one big pity part here: all Jacinda does is pine after Will, give Cassian horrible mixed signals and get jealous about her sister’s new powers.
We do learn a lot more about the draki and their primitive attitudes and tribal structure, but that’s about it. Sure, Jacinda’s life in the pride does genuinely suck at some points (the ostracism, Tamra’s new celebrity, etc.) but the angst does get tiring after a while. Even though Sophie Jordan is awesome at writing highly emotional prose, there can only be so much angst in one book before I feel like throwing it at the wall. At least by the end Jacinda is starting to almost accept her life back in the pride and sees Cassian is maybe not all that bad, Tamra deserves a bit of celebrity and maybe she should stop moping. Of course with such a cliffhanger at the end of the novel I’ll still read Hidden, the last book in the trilogy. I’m just hoping that Sophie Jordan pulls it together for the concluding book.
I give this book 2/5 stars.