My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Initially, when I started Dead Beautiful I immediately compared Twilight with this because the basic theme WAS pretty similar to Twilight.
Here's what the story is about,
Renee comes from sunny California to the cold, cold Gottfried Academy in Maine when her parents mysteriously die of heart-attack at the same time and same place.
Even though everyone tells her that's how they actually died, Renee doesn't believe it. Nor does her grandfather. He thinks that Renee would no longer be safe in her parent's place and thus, sends her to Gottfried Academy, where she meets Dante on her first day. Instantly, she's attracted to him. Her room-mate, Eleanor tells her how Dante hasn't mixed up with anybody since the year before and how she's the first person he's actually talked to after a long time.
Initially, she thinks that Dante is too weird for her but after he starts giving her Latin lessons after school, she starts liking him. (I have no idea why she exactly liked him. Maybe it was the "beautiful" and "perfect" looks. Or maybe she just liked weird, secretive and boring guys.)
In Gottfried Academy, Renee sees/experiences many strange things. Namely, the death of Benjamin who also died of heart attack the year before and the sudden transfer of his girlfriend soon after his death. As Renee investigates further, she finds that such incidents have been happening in the academy for a long time. Many called it the "Gottfried Curse". Renee feels that these incidents are somehow linked with the death of her parents and she's bent on finding out who's behind all this...
I think I would've actually liked this book, if the romantic part wasn't so typical and the story was described in fewer words. Scenes which could've been explained in a page or two actually took almost five pages. Needless to say, the story got pretty boring after a few chapters and a lot of skipping pages took place. About halfway through the book, I totally gave up and almost discontinued it but then I decided not to because I honestly WANTED to know the mystery behind her parents death and how exactly dead people turned into walking, talking and weirdly beautiful zombies. (I still have a hard time relating good-looks with zombies, and I totally blame it on the zombie movies I've seen and games I've played)
I felt that Dante was the zombie version of Edward Cullen. No really, I couldn't believe how similar both the characters were. The same can be said for Renee but I found her a bit more childish, self-absorbed and annoyingly "flawless" than Bella. That's another big problem I had with this book. ALL the characters were just so...perfect. After a while it just gets hard not to roll your eyes at their perfect-ness. I don't think Renee made even a single teeny-tiny mistake throughout the story except maybe being too self-absorbed to think about her missing best friend/room-mate. I also found Dante and Renee's relationship too rushed. No matter how weird Dante got, she still just ignored it all and that was SUPER irritating.
I can't really say I absolutely disliked this book because I didn't. I really liked the mystery parts of this book. The things which weren't supposed to be figured out till the end, remained that way and I liked it. I especially liked guessing what's gonna happen next and being wrong. But frankly, the execution of the story wasn't that impressive. But I still think, Ms. Woon would make a good mystery author. Hush, Hush and Evermore fans would like this story. But that's just my opinion. :)
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