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Half Lost Paperback – 28 March 2016
Nathan Byrn is running again. The Alliance of Free Witches has been all but destroyed. Scattered and demoralized, constantly pursued by the Council's Hunters, only a bold new strategy can save the rebels from total defeat. They need the missing half of Gabriel's amulet - an ancient artefact with the power to render its bearer invincible in battle.But the amulet's guardian - the reclusive and awesomely powerful witch Ledger - has her own agenda. To win her trust, Nathan must travel to America and persuade her to give him the amulet. Combined with his own Gifts, the amulet might just be enough to turn the tide for the Alliance and end the bloody civil war between Black and White witches once and for all...
Teens rejoice: the inheritor to Stephenie Meyer's crown has arrived. ― Fiona Wilson, The Times
Edgy, arresting and brilliantly written, Half Bad grips you from the first page and doesn't let go. ― Michael Grant, author of Gone
A brilliant debut that is both deeply unique and unsettling, one that chilled me to the bone and broke my heart even as I sped through its pages. This will haunt you. ― Marie Lu, author of Legend
Take our word for it, this book is going to be huge. ― Stylist
Brilliantly paced with more than a few nasty surprises, Half Bad is a wickedly addictive read that will capture the imagination of any fan of YA fiction. ― Starburst
Not since the Harry Potter books - yes, I said it! - have I felt so fully immersed in an author's creation... I couldn't be more stoked over Half Bad, and this launch novel of a trilogy truly deserves all the hype surrounding it - and much more... ― Amanda Hurley, Inkwood Books
- Publisher : Penguin (General UK); 1st edition (28 March 2016)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 352 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0141350903
- ISBN-13 : 978-0141350905
- Reading age : 12 - 17 years
- Dimensions : 12.9 x 2.1 x 19.8 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 343,837 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from Australia
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Not going to lie this book may have taken some of my soul with it.
Top reviews from other countries
Overall the book is very good, we get to watch Nathan go very dark (darker than ever before), he goes to the brink and its's only Gabriel and his unwavering love and devotion that brings him back.
However, as we start to approach the end of the book, i started to get worried about the main characters and the way Sally Green was going to end it.
I won't give anything away, but personally i was unhappy with the ending for two reasons. One part had me crying, and the other part had me peed off.
I love Nathan, and his world, and will re-read these books time and time again. But feel that as a fan i was a little cheated at the end.
he must become its ultimate weapon.
And to save a society that hates him,
he must risk losing all that he loves..."
I am heartbroken...
And, of course, full of elation because Half Lost is one of the reasons that I love reading books!
But, I'm kinda never going to be the same again. Remaining in a perpetual state of crying is normal, right? I get the feeling it'll be my new normal every time I think of this book.
I'll try to be coherent, apologies if I'm not. Half Lost is a phenomenal finale with a phenomenal finale of its own. The first three quarters of the story are a fast-paced ride where you will experience action, adrenaline and an array of emotional blows that do nothing to prepare you for the end. Revelations are had and the war of the series is here to be fought. And fought it is.
With magic, mystery and potential mental breakdowns, Half Lost closes a series you'd do best to pick up if you love young adult fantasy with conspiracies, complex characters and romance that will take your breath away...
SPOILER WARNING (Because there is no way I'm writing this review without revealing and venting the biggest spoiler of the entire story. You've been warned.)
Synopsis (Not a copy from the book, but I always keep my interpretations close.)
The time has come for the final battle.
For White and Black to finally reunite and restore the balance and peace.
But Death hangs back at the edges rubbing his hands with glee.
There will be death, pain and destruction, and the hopeful future being fought for might never come.
But Nathan Byrn has a fire inside him waiting to consume.
He's more powerful than he's ever been, but never more vulnerable.
His enemies cry for his blood while his allies plot behind his back.
Nathan could lose more than the war.
He could lose everyone he cares about, and be left in the world alone...
Plot - 5/5 Stars
If you've read the book, would you say my synopsis is too passive aggressive? You don't even need to read between the lines to see my frustration. Ah, well, there's a spoiler warning.
Okay, deep breath time. Try to think rationally and review. So Half Lost starts off fine, slow as the story and characters deal with the explosive ending in Half Wild. From there we get some fantastic character progression while the plot simmers its way to boiling point. It's a reflective and riveting experience that Green enhances with bouts of action that benefit exceptionally from Nathan and his plethora of magical abilities.
As we reach the midway point things speed up (if that's even possible). Plans come into action and everything our cast has been fighting for is highlighted. The severity of the situation is struck with a flaming sword and the biggest use of magic the series has used to date is on show. This is definitely the conclusion.
But the end... That is where the emotional punch comes and destroys you. I'm really quite pleased, and in some ways surprised, that Green gives us a superb gay romance. I'm ecstatic about it because we don't see, or read, about it enough, and surprised, well, for the same reason. And it's main characters, not a sidelined event. But, with the major theme of the novels focused on prejudice, it's the perfect fit. It's not a gimmick or something to be edgy, it has a purpose and an investment that resonates with the reader.
And I don't hate the way it ends... I know, send for the firing squad. As we reach the final scenes, Gabriel, one of our two lovebirds, dies in the great battle. It's shocking and has you in tears and leaves you wondering if you'll ever love again. But, there's so much more to it, and I'll explain my reasoning when I get to the characters.
It is safe for me to say that Sally Green delivers a fantastic and fierce finale that will stay with you for a long, long time.
Pace - 5/5 Stars
Pure gold. It's fast, but never sacrifices depth and development; it's smooth, but the ride is far from uneventful; and it's more mature, with the writing conveying clear motivations and messages.
Characters - 5/5 Stars
So Green has a spectacular cast, practically an all-rounder: Those you love, you love, and those you hate, you hate (well, except Annalise, I have a feeling you're supposed to be mixed about her, when really you just hate her). They're all distinctive; time and effort have gone into each one and it shows.
But they ain't who I want to talk about.
I want to talk about Nathan and Gabriel, our protagonists, and romantic partners. First off, this is how romance is done! Green creates a relationship that is natural, grounded and very, very real. It's not love at first sight; it's not fairy tales and lovey-dovey language; it's real and gritty, hopeful and heartbreaking. So it's no wonder that when Gabriel dies at the end you feel like you've been obliterated in every way possible.
And yes, I know it's a common trope for gay relationships in fiction, but it's true to the Half Bad world, and like Nathan and Gabriel, it burned bright. But the ending doesn't end with despair, it ends in love and reunion.
For a part of this novel's predecessor, Half Wild, and for a large part of this entry, Green lays the foundations for something called the Essence. The Essence, for me, is actually just a fancy way of describing nature. And from nature all things are born, and to nature all things return. I'm beginning to ramble, but stay with me. The world needed Nathan and Gabriel to affect change, they are two parts of a whole, and both are instrumental in bringing about a new world order.
And nature provided that.
And once they were done, they both returned, together.
In my mind, they are together, free, happy.
And I think that's pretty amazing.
Writing - 5/5 Stars
To pack a punch like that, you have to be better than just good.
Sally Green, you are amazing, and I can't wait to read your next adventure.
Overall - 5/5 Stars
A thrilling, emotional and memorable read.
Please, if you haven't already, pick up this series.
Ok, so from the bit where Van dies, everything just goes downhill, and I don't mean the story as such, but the quality of it all. Not the part about Nathan and Gabriel, cause I really liked that, but the part at Ledgers, where they basically don't do much except get the amulet, wheb there was scope for so much more and then there are a few buts of story thread that just completely get left open. Green tries to tie some off in the last few pages through Arrans stories, but it just doesn't work. And why on earth would she kill off Gabriel? And in such a rushed and silly way? Doesnt even make sense, because how can a bullet bounce off Nathan and go into Gabriels chest when Nathan is lying on top of him?
Then of course there's the whole thing about becoming a tree that's just riddiculous. And first in the fight he is super strong and suddenly can use his powers like never before, but he still can't properly stop time or heal? Seriously?
All in all the ending was rushed and riddiculous and why on earth would he be ok living with (or even near) Celia again?
Sally Green‘s Half Bad Trilogy has done for witches what Harry Potter did for magic. Sally’s incredibly unique take on witches, both black and white, is genre-changing and has certainly reignited interest in our witchy brethren over the course of three books. I don’t know about you but I’m craving more.
The Alliance, or what’s left of it, and the Council are still at odds and the tension is nudged higher with each consequential chapter as they come to blows, resulting in a crescendo of action that feels like you’re in the thick of it and running for your life just like our favourite characters. Annalise is still AWOL, the threat of Soul and Wallend hangs heavy in the air as they build towards an attack and loyalties are once again questioned as the inevitable draws near.
The ongoing internal turmoil that has been prominent in the previous two books continues – between what Nathan knows is right, what he knows is wrong and what he as a teenage boy wants. Whether that be killing or running or hiding, Nathan feels not only trapped by his emotions in Half Lost but also by the people he loves…and hates.
Comparisons are rife. Despite Marcus only having been in Nathan’s life for a short period of time, the Alliance can’t seem to separate the man from the son. After B-Day, Nathan is kept on a tight leash and despite his best intentions, Gabriel begins to feel more like a guard dog than a friend. Not to mention the ceaseless death stares and snide comments he hears from the new recruits on the rare occasion he does visit Camp.
Gabriel, bless him, sticks to his guns, supporting Nathan wherever he can whether that means backing off or backing in *wink wink* and he’s with Nathan every step of the way, even when Nathan’s actions are at their least defendable.
The grand finale is proper edge of your seat stuff. I accidentally found myself skipping ahead in places because I just couldn’t read the pages fast enough. The big bad bosses make their eagerly awaited appearances in equally dramatic and tense fashion. The excitement literally reverberates off your skin. The scenes are that good. The energy and pacing are incredible. Emotions are at an all-time high and it will satisfy your cravings for this world and these characters in every sense of the word.
This books gets all the points for giving me all the emotions – and publicly too! Half Lost has one of the most emotional endings I’ve experienced since Cassandra Clare’s Clockwork Princess and though it is bittersweet, it fits perfectly into Sally’s world. Personally, I can’t wait to see what she has in store for us next.
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