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Short Description for Spellbound Sixteen-year-old Emma Conner is inexplicably drawn to Brendan Salinger, the hottest guy in her class. With the help of her Wiccan friend Angelique, Emma discovers that she and Brendan are reincarnated soul mates who first met in medieval times.
- Published: 21 June 2011
- Format: Paperback 344 pages
- ISBN 13: 9780373210305 ISBN 10: 0373210302
- Sales rank: 27,178
Reviews for Spellbound
Previously published on my blog: http://fictionfervor.wordpress.com/2011/06/28/review-spellbound-by-cara-lynn-shultz/
If you've got a foothold in the book world, you'll know that Spellbound has been all the rage lately. Book bloggers keep on reviewing it and giving it five stars, and it's currently the second most requested book on NetGalley.
But if you ask me? I don't see what this hype is about.
Yes, Spellbound was a nice break from vampires and werewolves. Yes, Spellbound had a cute couple. Yes, Spellbound had interesting characters. Yes, Spellbound had an interesting plot.
But that's not enough to reel me in, trust me.
Sure, Spellbound isn't about vampires and werewolves. Lots of books aren't these days, thankfully. (Otherwise I would give up on books, honestly.) But Spellbound is based on something that's getting slightly old. Reincarnation. I've already read a few books about that.
Sure, Spellbound had a cute couple. Emma and Brendan are just adorable for each other, and they really do have chemistry. But honestly, their love for each other doesn't seem real to me yet. Even with that ending of how to break the curse and how Brendan was willing to sacrifice himself for Emma, their love isn't realistic. In fact, the ending made me even more convinced that their love isn't realistic. That's classic. It's cheesy.
The characters? I wasn't lying when I said that they were interesting. But I didn't mean the main characters. Because in addition to their un-real romance, they are both un-real characters. Emma is a Mary Sue. Seriously, coming from a tragic past? Pretty and kind of smart? Has a rich and powerful aunt? And even though I love her for standing up for her younger cousin, Emma is not kick-butt. Snarky, yes (and I do admit that I love snarky protagonists), but not kick-butt. Did she kick Anthony's butt? No. She had to be saved by the hero of the day, Brendan.
And Brendan? He's DEFINITELY a Marty Stue. Without a doubt. Smart? Strong? Athletic? Incredibly hot? Devil-may-care attitude to everyone except Emma? It's completely obvious. And I know it was necessary because Archer wanted him to be reincarnated as handsome and strong and smart and all of those things, but does it really have to be that obvious?
And the plot. It was definitely interesting watching Emma and Brendan trying to get past the curse, but it was completely predictable at times. I definitely found out about the reincarnated love far before Emma read about Archer.
And at times, the plot reminded me of Twilight. Pretty girl going to a new school, where she gets new friends and finds true love in a hot guy she meets? And this hot guy is different from all of the others because of whatever improbable reason? Yes, Spellbound was a tad bit Twilight-esque.
Now that I've got all the negativity out of my system, I'll talk about the good things. I loved Angelique. Angelique is Emma's best friend. And Angelique is a witch. A good one, that is. Angelique was amazingly considerate and supporting of Emma, trying to help Emma break the curse and convince Emma to get in touch with her inner witch.
I loved Cisco too. Though it was obvious from the moment that I met Brendan that Emma would end up with him, I half hoped that Emma would end up with Cisco . . . until I learned that Cisco was, unfortunately, not interested in females. But Cisco was realistic and friendly and everything I hope a friend could be.
Overall, Spellbound was a predictable book with unrealistic main characters, but I highly enjoyed Emma's snarky attitude, Angelique's witchy-ness, and the romance between Emma and Brendan. by Linda
Spellbound By Leer Sin Límites
View the complete review: http://quieroleersinlimites.blogspot.com.es/2012/06/resena-93-spellbound.html
How usually happens to me when I start a new book and/or saga, I admit I hadn't much idea about what the book was. The only thing I really knew was that the main character suffered some type of course-What's a girl to do when meeting The One means she's cursed to die a horrible death?
The reason why this was not a perfect book is very simple: for me, a book with this plot never will be perfect. What plot? The reincarnation of two human that love each other. I think that this stories have too little possibilities of making you fall in love with their romance -with me at least.
Many years ago, Archer, a rich man, fell in love with a peasant, Gloriana. Archer broke his engagement with her rich fianceé for her, and they had a child. But the father of the scorned fianceé took avenge and, while Archer was gone, killed Gloriana. Not being able of living without her, Archer visited a with to recover the soul of her loved one, but the plan backfired and he cursed their souls.
Nowadays, Archer's soul reincarnated in Brendan, and Gloriana's in Emma.
*fin del spoiler*
Why can't I believe stories about reincarnations? Because when I see the two protagonists, no matter they're soul mates, I can't help but think that they don't love each other because of who they are right now, but because of who they were once upon a time -and I have to make clear that this doesn't happen to me just with this book, but with all the books that touch this theme.
But if we put aside the reincarnations part, the book is perfectly marvellous. Brendan is enchanting, and it is an understatement. Is hard not falling in love with a character like him. Emma has had a hard life, and now she's trying to start a new life. The secondary characters, although some of them aren't deeply developed, are completely different: there's the gay friend, the super innocent cousin, the goth friend that happens to be a witch, the cocky guy...
Along the story, before Emma discovers the truth about Brendan and herself, the strangest things happen to her: the streetlights blow out when she passes under them and she has very disturbing dreams. According to her friend Angelique, they're warnings to be careful. Surprisingly, I found this paranormal episodes very unsettling and they gave me goosebumps.
Brendan and Emma will have to decide to split out or to fight against the course, and in the road they may discover things about themselves they never could have expected.
At last, although there is a second book -which I'm going to read, but I don't know if there are going to be more books-, this book could have stayed as an only book. The plot ends completely closed, and after reading the summary of Spellcaster, I have clear that the plot is going to be totally different. by sandra
SPELLBOUND- A bewitchingly hip romance set in modern NYC, that has been set into motion many centuries ago. You shouldn't miss that!
The story of SPELLBOUND follows Emma Conner who just moved to New York city to live with her aunt. With several secrets in tow she has to face a new school and new enemies but she also gets the chance to meet many new exciting people.
One of them is Brendan Salinger, he is good-looking, smart and destined to fall in love with Emma. And their love feels just perfectly natural and sweet. Although they are destined to be together, their developing relationship didn't feel forced or constructed for one second.
Interesting about Emma is that she's the girl who has two pasts with secrets that start affecting her new life in New York. On the one hand she's got a in her small hometown. On the other hand something inside of Emma has once lived in the Middle Ages. Now both pasts circling around personal and familiar conflicts and strokes of fate seem to affect Emma and Brendan's love in a very dangerous way that could not only tear them apart but mean death.
I immediately felt attached to Emma and Brendan and it's not only that the couple has some really cute scenes, but other characters like her loyal friends or relatives contribute to a great storyline and extremely entertaining dialogues aswell. One of my favourite secondary characters is Emma's cousin, Ashley, who is such a sweet and supportive person.
Conflicts in SPELLBOUND result from fate and a curse laid on the lovers many centuries ago that still seems to affect them in some way. But it wouldn't be a YA novel if there weren't also the prep school antagonists who can be pretty mean.
Shultz supports her fantastic debut novel with an exciting character cast, a great writing and the striking mixture of a fancy prep school, fashion and paranormalcy. I sense a few more mysteries and secrets being burried in the past that are only waiting to be reanimated in SPELLBOUND's sequel!
Gossip Girl watch out, with SPELLBOUND a strong rival is on its way. The story around Emma and Brendan not only convinces with the realistic and all-day meanings of being a teenager and fashionista in New York City, but is also well-supported by engaging paranormal elements! I consider myself totally spellbound, xoxo Miss Page-Turner by MissPageTurner
After her stepdad almost gets her killed Emma finally accepts her aunt's offer to move to New York with her and be enrolled into a fancy school along with her younger and cute cousin she invents a whole more-posh background so she won't feel completely different.
But in place like Vincent Academy she is bound to find friends and foes. And she certainly does.
First we have Cisco who is gay, popular and friendly. He soon becomes one of her best friends.
Then we have Emma's lab partner Angelique who turns out to be a witch. She soon to becomes a marvelous friend and a fountain of information. They two will make the dialogues fun and snarky.
Her cousin Ashley who, despite being a little superficial, is sweet and naive. But Emma watches over her and protects her from creeps like Anthony. Why does she need protection from him? Well, he is the big bad wolf... and a very bad one.
And then we have Kristin, the popular girl that tries to make Emma's life a nightmare.
Finally there's Brendan, the rich-gorgeous-hot bad guy that makes Emma blush and feel... different. Like she can trust him, like he is important somehow.
True to be told he is important and their future is so tangled that, if they want to stay alive they will have to find a way to fight an old curse that keeps them reincarnating only to suffer again.
And in between they will find a few dramas to solve and some misunderstandings to talk about while deciding if the warnings from Emma's dead twin brother are so important that they have to stay away from each other.
The first thing that I liked about this book was the cover. Yep, as soon as I spotted it in NetGalley I requested it and then, despite not having the time to read it yet, bought it too. Now that I've finished it I can say that I liked it a lot.
The plot is maybe a little bit obvious sometimes but Cara Lynn managed to make very believable characters with personalities that made them interesting and originals.
And I found Emma's loyalty to her little cousin very refreshing. No spoilers, you know me, but I enjoyed that part a lot^^
The love between Brandan and Emma was maybe a little too fast and a little too quick but hey, that kind of relationships really happen in real life too so is not that weird.
What I'm really curious about is the second book, Spellcaster. Why? Well, I thought Spellbound was an only book and it did had a proper finish so it was a surprise when I found out about it but since I liked this book Spellcaster will sure have a spot in my pile very soon. by Alaiel Kreuz
This star-crossed love story never gets old
We all know the doomed story about Romeo & Juliet, but did these young lovers know how hopeless their star-crossed romance would be? When Emma gets to start fresh at an exclusive prep school after some family tragedies, finding a Romeo was bottom on her to-do list. So, why does the resident hottie Brendan draw her unwilling eye - and why does their dance feel like a tale as old as time? The answer is rather grim: True love, if what they have is true, will end in a curse called death if they are unable to resist each other. Will Emma and Brendan find each other worth the risk?
I know the story of Spellbound seems familiar - Romeo & Juliet, new girl & hot-but-oh-so-elusive boy, true love headed down the track of destruction - and you must wonder if this book is worth a gander. My verdict? Spellbound has such an enchanting voice that will make the classic story pop and sparkle like nobody's business. Fun and charming with enough dash of mystery, sizzle, and snark that will keep the pages turning. I tend to find something magical in a romance-gone-cursed - and watching Brendan and Emma try to decide between being together or staying apart is heart-wrenching. I am curious to see where the series goes from here. by theEPICrat
30 Nights Insomniac Reviews
So, while reading this, I kept thinking Twilight. A better written version, but still. New girl more or less immediately falls for extremely good looking (and rich) guy, who pretty much ignores her. And then suddenly one day he decides she isn't so bad after all and starts hanging out with her, causing both of them to helplessly fall in love with each other after, what, three days.
It wasn't so bad though. It was a nice read and I liked reading it, even with the similarities to Twilight. Unlike many others it seems I liked Emma and if Brendan isn't simply too die for I don't know. I liked their story, it was "cute" (cute to read anyway) and if not believable at least entertaining. I had some problems with the villain, because it felt extremely forced and there was no real drive to him, I think. Something that genuinely indicates this is that I wasn't rooting for the villain. He was extremely one sided.
Still, I liked it. I read the book in two sittings (even though my NetGalley version was seriously messed up on my Kindle and it didn't seem to have chapters ... I hope the real version does!) and the action scenes at the end were really superb. I generally don't like action but it was great, really. I had some "duh" moments with Emma who kept behaving a little stupid at times, but if she hadn't done that I might have critiqued her for being too perfect, so I guess that's okay.
Why 4 Clouds you ask? Mainly because I liked reading it and I read it pretty fast. Both of which indicate an entertaining reading experience and that's what I was looking for! I wasn't looking for another Nietzsche or something like that. And really, those "flaws" (apart from the Twilight one) I mostly only noticed after finishing the book and sitting down to review it! by Jill Barrakling
One of the best YA paranormal romances that I have read in a very long time! This book was VERY well written, and I really enjoyed how it flowed. Cara Lynn Shultz creates a realistic world with the antagonistic, evil teen girl, the jock, the class freak, and the bad boy. But shockingly, it was not cliched in any way! Her characters were very believable, and were people I could very easily see as being real. You could feel the struggle and frustration between Emma and Brendan as they tried to figure out the situation they were involved in. This book was perfect in every way, and I look forward to reading more from Cara Lynn Shultz!!! by Asche Bartley
- Top review
Charming , Witty & Sweet
I wasn't really sure what to expect when i started this novel. I has heard mostly good things and read the synopsis but when it started, I worried a little it miht turn out not much more than a Gossip Girl type story.
However I was pleasantly surprised instead to find a charming sweet story with that dash of supernatural in it that makes a story, at least in my opinion, so much more.
I guess having watched tv shows like Gossip Girl, it made may of Shultz's descriptions come to life even more and her descriptions made feel like i knew the locations well. However it was the characters that really made the story.
I liked the main character Emma, she was smart, witty and strong and Brendan made we want to swoon alongside Emma and the rest of the girls at Vincent Academy. The only characters I couldn't really get a handle on were Kristin and Anthony. Though I think was more to do with me necessarily than the writing.
Overall though this was a charming, smart, sweet story that had me pretty much hooked till the end. I definitely enjoyed it and thought it well worth 4 stars.
Sapphired Dragon xx by Nikk Karlovsky
Contemporary Fans - Give it a try!
Wow! I started reading this book this afternoon and never stopped. It's not my usual fair, with the otherworldly, supernatural bits, but the cover drew me in. I'm so glad I took a glance at the words. The story is, at heart, about a girl finding her way in a new (to her), completely believable place (good 'ole New York City). It's like reading a contemporary YA and coming across a dash of unexplained magic here and there. There's just enough to make it interesting and unexpected, without being a turn off to someone like me (read: a girl who leans toward the real world when she's selecting her books). There's a centuries long curse and a witch, right alongside high schoolers hanging out on the steps of The Met and sneaking into a bar to listen to a friend's terrible band.
Honestly, I was hooked after the first sentence. "It's always embarrassing to have someone take you to school. Your dad, your mom, anyone with her hair in rollers." It sets the tone for the main character, Emma, and her voice throughout the book. She's funny, smart, and tough, and you'll want her to be your BFF.
I have to admit, I was completely bewitched (see what I did there?) by Brendan. He's rich, privileged, very good looking, and grew up with his own floor in a fancy house in NYC, so it would be easy to be annoyed by him. Instead, he's smart, and sweet and unaffected and just tough enough to be interesting. He's one of those classic, insta-fave YA boys, for sure!
My only real complaint is that I ended up missing a disappearing friend. Early on, Emma establishes an insta-friendship with a boy named Cisco and he's all but entirely absent once THE BOY is in the picture as a full-on love interest (and it's not because he was jealous or tossed aside, that's not the kind of friendship they had). I missed him and their easy camaraderie and wish he could've been worked into solving Emma's big problem to keep him around.
I've seen some criticism floating around about how Emma's life revolves around the boy as soon as she sees him, but it's not a complaint I share. First, it is a teen romance, so what else is it supposed to revolve around? Mostly, I think her single-mindedness fits with her story. Early on, her crush reads like a typical high school girl. Her super cute cousin, Ashley, swoons along with her while they share play-by-plays of their interactions with their respective crushes and drool over hot boys playing basketball after school. Later, she's facing a huge obstacle that could take him, and everything, away from her. Can't say I think she should be taking it lightly!
This is a must-read for fans of romance, those that like a little magic in their YA and my fellow contemporary fans that are willing to take a chance. I'm actually caught off guard by how much I enjoyed this story, so definitely give it a shot! by StoryboundGirl