Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: Lux Series
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Publish Date: May 8th, 2012
Genres: Adventure, Fantasy, Supernatural, Young Adult
Starting over sucks.
When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I’d pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring… until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up.
And then he opened his mouth.
Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something… unexpected happens.
The hot alien living next door marks me.
You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon’s touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades.
If I don’t kill him first, that is.
I’ve never been overly fond of alien tales, recounted through books, movies, tv shows – you name it. Therefore, as you can imagine, I was extremely apprehensive when Obsidian was recommended to me by one of my closest friends. She had been ranting and raving about the series for weeks before I finally gave in to her demands, and, after I was able to put my initial skepticism aside, I was completely overwhelmed.
As my first official alien novel, I was impressed by the execution of such a concept in Obsidian. Before I picked up the book, I was expecting a sci-fi laden, futuristic account of some outlandish adventure, but I was taken aback by how well Armentrout meshed our world with that of another galaxy, particularly within a book that takes place in modern society. And I must say, kudos to Armentrout for choosing a less common supernatural species to write about – we certainly don’t need any more vampires or werewolves gracing the young adult genre. Without a doubt, Obsidian has significantly changed my previously rigid outlook on aliens, and something tells me I’ll be a bit more eager to read about aliens in the future!
Katy, our independent, kick-butt protagonist, was extremely likable. Her spunky, take-no-crap-from-anyone attitude enabled her to look after herself, rather than relying on her beloved prince charming to save her at every twist and turn. And no, I don’t like her simply because she ran a book blog of her own (although this may have contributed a teeny weeny bit!). She’s one of the few fictional characters who reacts realistically when she learns of the existence of supernatural beings. She reacts perfectly, cycling through a range of emotions before ultimately accepting what she’s personally observed to be evidence of aliens.
Daemon served as the bad boy and conceited jerk turned adorable book boyfriend, because what book doesn’t need one of those? I will admit, though, he could have been considerably less of a dick at the beginning of the book – his sarcastic, uncalled for comebacks were a bit much at times. While I won’t go so far as to say that his initial behavior toward Katy was justified, I will say that he has his reasons, which are revealed later in the series.
The romance moved a bit slowly for my liking, particularly because Daemon gave Katy the cold shoulder for the majority of the novel – although a little sexual tension can be good at times! So while the romantic scenes were few and far between, they certainly didn’t disappoint. While I wouldn’t have minded a few more of these, I think they would have been challenging to incorporate given Daemon’s closed-off, defensive personality. (There are more of these scenes to come in later novels, though, so I can’t exactly complain!)
While there’s been quite a bit of hype about the Lux Series recently, not all of it has been positive – there are quite a few accusations about Twilight similarities. Yes, there are 6 supernatural beings. Yes, they are all “related.” Yes, they have various powers, including incredible speed. Yes, the book begins with Katy moving to a new town and starting at a new school. Yes, Katy has a single parent and is forced to perform the majority of household tasks (cooking, cleaning, etc.). I think it would be pointless to overlook these similarities, but, personally, they didn’t bother me (although this could be because I didn’t find Twilight to be particularly horrid). And, in my opinion, I found Obsidian to be much more enjoyable than Twilight – all of these similarities/factors seemed to be combined more seamlessly and came across as significantly less cheesy.
Another commonly criticized component of Obsidian is its overuse, at times, of cliches. Depending upon the book, this could be either positive, negative, or neutral, and I would classify Obsidian as either neutral or positive in this respect. Differing from similar young adult novels, the cliches in Obsidian were incorporated well, which made them tolerable, if not entirely overlookable.
While I went into Obsidian a little uncertain, particularly with the introduction of aliens, I was ultimately won over. I think this was the perfect “first alien” novel – it’s definitely made me much more amenable to reading more alien books/series in the future (any recommendations?). I quickly fell in love with the realistic characters, action-packed plot, and well-crafted premise, which significantly overshadowed the book’s few setbacks. So if you can overlook the Twilight parallels and mindless cliches, I would recommend giving this book a try, especially if you have yet to foray into alien novels!