Review: Velvet by Temple West

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Overall: 4.5/5 Stars
Characters: 5/5
Setting: 4/5
Writing:
4/5
Plot and Themes: 4/5
Awesomeness Factor: 5/5
Review In A Nutshell:  Velvet is a refreshing take on the vampire romance cliche. I found myself laughing so many times while reading, and I absolutely cannot wait for book 3 in the trilogy to come out I so I finish it!

“Why would I fall in love with you? You’re just a hot, closet-nerd vampire with a bazillion dollars and a Harley. There’s absolutely nothing attractive about you.”
“I’m repulsive, I know.” 

This book was great.
Now I know what you’re saying- “It sounds just like Twilight!” “It’s just another stupid vampire romance!” and yes, you’re right. It is another vampire romance that is kinda similar in general concept to Twilight (powerful supernatural thing hunting down new girl, and her hot vampire classmate must protect her), but it’s also so much more. The paranormal romance genre is kinda over right now. People seem to be focusing more on high fantasy and epic science fiction, but if you only read one vampire book this year, I would probably recommend this one. It’s a refreshing take on a somewhat overdone genre. The vampires are different in this book, and based a little bit more in science than mythology. Temple West has a lot of their abilities explained logically. The love interest is not your mysterious and broody hot guy. Well, he is a hot guy, and he is mysterious, but not in an Edward-y/frustratingly cryptic and annoying way.

Out of all the characters, Adrian was probably my favorite (and also probably my favorite part of this book). He’s a closet nerd, very enthusiastic about things, and just wants to be a part of the human world. I really loved how in the beginning the protagonist, Caitlin (which by the way, is an awesome name), didn’t think he was anything strange at all, but just gay. She just assumed why he dressed so fashionable and acted so withdrawn was because he was gay. Vampire/Not-Human didn’t even cross her mind, because why would it? That honestly made me love this book before the plot even began. I also really enjoyed how the relationship developed. It’s obvious that they’re going to get together, but I really loved how it wasn’t insta-love, and instead, they became good friends before a relationship was even thought of between them.

 ” “Great,” I called back. “Just what every girl dreams of being told by their inhumanly attractive, immortal vampire protector: they look kind of ‘penguin-y.” “

The plot was pretty good. It wasn’t anything special or crazy, but it was fun. There was action, mystery, and the exposition was done well in an enjoyable way. But the characters still stole the show for me. I loved all the relationships, whether the romantic relationship that slowly built between Adrian and Caitlin, or the platonic relationships between Caitlin and her group of friends and her and Adrian’s odd younger brother Lucian. I also loved the familial relationship that developed slowly between her and her aunt, uncle, and cousin, who she moves in with at the start of the book after her mother passed away. Those relationships and characters drove the novel, and are what made it so interesting.

I also wanted to talk for a second about our protagonist, Caitlin. I really loved how fully fleshed out she was. She wasn’t a blank slate to insert yourself into (cough-cough-Bella-cough), she had a full character arc and fully thought out personality. At the start of the book, she just lost her mother, and you can see how she copes with the tragedy. She isn’t flawless. She doesn’t immediately bounce back from it. She’s angry, sometimes for seemingly no reason, she feels alone, and she just wants things to be back how they were before. West managed to keep her grief real while not making her whiny and annoying. Also, she had hobbies! For once, a protagonist who has skills beyond murder and magic! She’s an expert seamstress and wants to be a fashion designer (something you see more of in book 2, Cashmere). Caitlin feels like a real person, not just some cookie-cutter protagonist only there so we can focus on the broody love interest.

” “So you’re a vampire, eh?”
“’Eh’?” he asked.
“I’ve decided to turn Canadian.”
“I thought you were dead.”
“They don’t have Canadians in heaven?”
“I’ve never met any.” “

Pros – Funny, fast-paced, and has great in-depth logic behind the magic!
Cons – The plot isn’t the most original and can be a little predictable at times.
Overall – 4.5/5 stars. 
Velvet is really entertaining. It may not be perfect or mind-blowing, but I know I really did love it.

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Note: This review was originally written for my other blog, and had been written months ago. Follow my blog to see new reviews twice a week, and please be patient as I transfer over old posts to the new website!

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