Dream Dark & Beautiful Chaos – Kami Garcia , Margie Stohl

Dream Dark (Caster Chronicles, #2.5)

Dream Dark

Kami Garcia , Margie Stohl
Little Brown
Pub Date: Aug 2 2011





My rating:
3 star book

When Link joined his best friend, Ethan Wate, on a quest through a mysterious network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, he knew the journey would be dangerous. But returning home to Gatlin, South Carolina was just the beginning…

Wounded during a climactic battle, Link discovers that tending his injuries won’t be as simple as visiting a doctor and that healing his arm should be the least of his worries. For being bitten by a Supernatural does more than break the skin — it changes a person, inside and out, turning Link into someone more and more like the dark creature who injured him.

In this never-before-seen short story by New York Times bestselling authors Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, listeners witness Link’s heart-racing transformation. Dream Dark is set before the much-anticipated third Beautiful Creatures novel, Beautiful Chaos, and as a special bonus includes an exclusive sneak peek at the first five chapters.


This isn’t the first novella I’ve read and what I’ve learned so far is that I’m not the greatest fan of these novellas. Admittedly I only read series with novellas after the facts (so every book in the series is already published)which means that I don’t have to wait in between the other books, so that might make them slightly unnecessary. But I do have to say that in general it always leaves me wanting more. The sneak peak must have been nice as well for the readers who were stuck in the drought between “beautiful darkness” and “beautiful chaos”, but once again, this was not me. ”


The fact that this story follows Link did make up for the length in my eyes. He is one of my favourite characters from the series and I loved following him for a while. Even though it was very short, I found it entertaining. I enjoyed following the transformation up close and personal. We get more insight into Link’s daily life and follow his new self-discovery. But both are over in a flash! And let’s be honest, we are just getting a few glimpses of situations here and nothing even close to a full story.


Another let-down was that this book was told from Ethan’s point of view. Ok, it focuses on Link, but it’s still Ethan narrating the story, and I would have just wanted it to be Link. It would have been even funnier that way, I just know it.  But you know, the length is also an upside in a way. It is such a quick read that even if you weren’t that into it, you can just continue right away with the next book.


At the end of the day you should pick this up if you’re a really great fan of the series, but don’t worry if you skip it. The series stands on its own and doesn’t rely on any information from the novella. Sometimes it will hint to some events in here, but never all that detailed.

Beautiful Chaos (Caster Chronicles, #3)

Beautiful Chaos

Kami Garcia , Margie Stohl
Little Brown
Pub Date: Oct 18 2011






My rating:
4 star book

Ethan Wate thought he was getting used to the strange, impossible events happening in Gatlin, his small Southern town. But now that Ethan and Lena have returned home, strange and impossible have taken on new meanings. Swarms of locusts, record-breaking heat, and devastating storms ravage Gatlin as Ethan and Lena struggle to understand the impact of Lena’s Claiming. Even Lena’s family of powerful Supernaturals is affected – and their abilities begin to dangerously misfire. As time passes, one question becomes clear: What – or who – will need to be sacrificed to save Gatlin?

For Ethan, the chaos is a frightening but welcome distraction. He’s being haunted in his dreams again, but this time it isn’t by Lena – and whatever is haunting him is following him out of his dreams and into his everyday life. Even worse, Ethan is gradually losing pieces of himself – forgetting names, phone numbers, even memories. He doesn’t know why, and most days he’s too afraid to ask.

Sometimes there isn’t just one answer or one choice. Sometimes there’s no going back. And this time there won’t be a happy ending.


I really liked the apocalyptical stuff, I can’t deny it. especially in this religious Southern town, it was just very fun to witness. And it was just great how these were all the consequences of Lena’s Claiming. It just makes it that more serious that all these problems can be linked back to Lena. What was supposed to make her happy just turned everything into a big mess back in Gatlin. You can only begin to imagine how that must feel for her! And it’s not just Lena having a tough time, everyone is. Some more than others, but no one is really spared of troubles.


The characters were great again in this book. I loved how the whole dynamic between Link and Ridley changed, I loved how Amma shifted her concentration and focussed even more on Ethan. But I am getting a bit over the whole Ethan and Lena relationship. And don’t even talk to me about Liv and how that ends up. I was disappointed that she was just shoved aside pretty much and had turned into a shadow of the girl she once was.  And over some of the character interaction in general. I just found it so annoying that everyone kept having all these secrets! Why can’t they just talk to each other? After all they went through together, can’t they just talk openly?


Let’s talk about the setting for a minute as well. It’s still as Southern as ever and that is part of why I enjoy these books so much. This is still one of the points that keep pulling me into the story, even if the pacing got a bit slow. Because let’s be honest, at times it did. It can be said that not a lot of things happened in this book and for me it could have definitely been a bit shorter.


The ending took a long time to arrive, especially since I saw it coming too! I had guessed it quite a while back and was just waiting for them to figure it out. That took quite long as well and I felt none of the happiness I usually feel when guessing the ending. Yes it was a cliffhanger and it was leading right to the next book in the series. In a way I don’t mind cliffhangers, but this was obvious so it did bother me a bit.


Being honest with you guys I have to admit that after just having finished reading this book I rated it five stars on Goodreads. But while writing this review (and preparing for this review as well) I started thinking more and more about it and finding things I was disappointed by. It actually pains me to say that I found enough things that bugged me that I docked a star for them. I still liked the book but there were definitely some things that could have been different/better.



Synopsis and image taken from Goodreads

One thought on “Dream Dark & Beautiful Chaos – Kami Garcia , Margie Stohl

  1. Pingback: 2013 in books | Rantings, ravings and ramblings

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