Sunday, November 10, 2013

Autumn by Sierra Dean


Title: Autumn (Dog Days #1)
Author: Sierra Dean
Series: Dog Days
Publisher: Sierra Dean
Publication Date: June 2013
Goodreads Summary: As if being a high school senior in a small Texas town wasn’t hard enough, Cooper has bigger things to worry about than who he’ll take to prom and whether or not the Poisonfoot Padres will win homecoming. He has less than a year before his eighteenth birthday, when a curse placed on his family will doom him to live in coyote form forever.

The last thing he needs to complicate his already messed-up life is a girl, but fate has other plans in mind for him when it brings Eloise “Lou” Whittaker to Poisonfoot. She’s grouchy, sarcastic and has no love for her new Texas home, but she might be exactly the right person to help Cooper break the curse.

The clock is ticking, and Cooper will have to decide if he’s willing to let Lou in on his dirty little secret before it’s too late.
What did I Think?
             The Good: I really enjoyed Autumn. I must admit that at first I did have some misgivings. Although the plot was definitely different than anything else I had ever read I thought it was just going to be a general YA paranormal book. I was wrong. I read the entire book in one day, it kept my roommate and I up reading up to midnight. We were both very upset to learn that we would have to wait for the next one. When twelve pages were left my roommate suddenly cried out "OH NO! This book is the first in a series! That means it's going to end on a cliffhanger! AGHHHH!" she was right. Wow Dean, good cliffhanger, I will definitely be reading the next one, my roommate will too.
           Alright and now, let's take a moment to admire the cover. As a book cover designer I have a great appreciation to covers that catch the eye, but also reflect the novel itself. I love this cover. Something about it really draws me in. When I was flipping through books for review this one immediately jumped out at me. Who was this girl? What was her story? Why was she alone? Again, Dean good job your cover designer knew what they were doing.
           Okay, before we go any further I want to talk about the title. At first I was confused as to why the book was called Autumn and then I read it. Wow Dean, good title. I totally understand the meaning behind the title of this book, and the others in the series. I know from personal experience that it can be hard to come up with a title that represents your novel, but Dean did well. Now, let's talk about why the title is so perfect . . .
************WARNING SPOILERS************
            Autumn is the season during which things start to change. The summer has been beautiful, and thinking about school and what would happen during the fall has been put off, when suddenly it is upon you, and you have to think about it. Yes, I realize that the novel takes place during Autumn, but the title means so much more than that. Cooper Reynolds has known for a while that on his eighteenth birthday he would change into a coyote, but he has put off thinking about it, living his life as well as possible. Lou Whittaker has known that her father is dying but has never thought about what would happen once he was gone. Then Autumn hits. Suddenly Cooper must think about his impending doom, and Lou must move to Poisonfoot, Texas. The leaves and weather are changing, and so is Poisonfoot.
            Lou is the first person that has been friends with Cooper. She actually likes him. Cooper is the first boy that Lou feels completely comfortable around. This is the first time that members from the Reynolds and Whittaker family have been friends since the curse. Their families forbid them to meet, but again this is a time of change. Cooper and Lou refuse to be fitted into the strict roles that their families seem to play. They want to change the curse, and they want to be together. This is a time of change.
             Things come to a head when Lou is captured by the Wyatts. This is the ultimate period of change, this is when the last leaf falls, the one that has been hanging on all fall. This is the moment when it finally gives up and goes the way of the rest. And winter descends. Lou has fought against those that oppose Cooper, she has shied away from Archer and the power of his touch, but now she can fight it no longer. The winds are too strong for the leaf and it falls. The Wyatts are much stronger than Lou in her low blood sugar state. She can no longer resist them, and they remove Cooper from her mind. The leaf falls and goes the way of the rest. When Lou exits the building, she has forgotten her memories of Cooper, and will go the way of the rest of Poisonfoot, and shun Cooper. Winter descends and the world is at a standstill.
         The Bad: Although I understand the need for awkward lovey scenes between Cooper and Lou, that doesn't mean I enjoyed them. It made me feel awkward, but I guess that was kind of the point . . . Anyway, I really hated the ending. I mean, yeah, once again I get the point in relation to the Autumn theme, but really? Losing her memory???? That means she's going to have to start all over again! I'm very upset about that. Cooper was my favorite character and it hurts knowing the pain Lou's loss of memories will cause him. Really, though otherwise it was a great book.

Content: Although Autumn did have swearing, and underage drinking there were no sex scenes, or inappropriate moments between characters. I give kudos to Sierra Dean for writing a book centered around high school students and keeping out explicit scenes.
Style: This book was pretty well written. Sure, it may not have the best writing style out there, but it's sufficient enough that it doesn't detract from plot of the novel.

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