Saturday, 31 July 2010

ARC Review: Claire de Lune - Christine Johnson

Hanover Falls hasn't had a werewolf problem in over one hundred years, but when people suddenly start dying in Claire Benoit's town, panic spreads fast.  The gruesome killings are all anyone can talk about at Claire's sixteenth birthday party, though the only thing on Claire's mind is gorgeous Matthew Engle chatting and flirting with her as if she's the only girl there.  But that night, Claire discovers something that takes away all sense of normality: she's a werewolf.

Claire knows she must keep her changing identity a secret, especially from Matthew, whose father is leading the werewolf hunt.  But then a rogue werewolf threatens to put everyone she knows in danger.  Struggling to feel comfortable in either skin, and with her lupine loyalty at odds with her human heart, Claire is forced to make a choice that will change her forever.

Claire de Lune Series:
Claire de Lune (releasing in the UK on 5th August 2010)
Nocturne (due to be published in 2011)

For more information visit Christine Johnson's website

When Claire finds out just after her 16th birthday that she is a werewolf she is completely shocked.  She has to keep her identity a secret from everyone - especially with a rogue werewolf on the prowl killing innocent victims in her town and the town's feelings against werewolves running high.  Things are made even more complicated by the fact that her new boyfriend's father is the man leading the hunt for the rogue werewolf.  Trying to come to terms with her new identity isn't easy and lying to everyone she knows is even harder.  Will she be able to keep her secret & will they discover the rogue before it's too late?

Claire de Lune was a book I've been looking forward to reading for ages so I was very excited when I received a review copy.  Unfortunately I was slightly disappointed, while there were some parts of the story I really enjoyed there were a few things that irritated me and left me unable to say I completely loved the book.  I really loved the new twist that Christine Johnson put on the werewolf mythology but I would have liked to have had a bit more detail - how the world knows about the existence of werewolves, and some more pack history and information would have been good.  I'm hoping that we'll see more of that in the sequel though and I will definitely read be reading it to find out.

I felt that Claire was a very realistic character, it was so easy to relate to the confusion she felt after finding out about her werewolf heritage.  She doesn't have a great relationship with her Mum so she doesn't really have anyone to talk to about what is going on.  Where she would usually turn to her best friend Emily for advice, now she has to actively lie to her to keep her secret.  I did feel there was possibly a little too much time spent on conversations between Claire & Emily that revolved around nothing but boys but it was nice to see a positive friendship between 2 people who obviously care for each other.  While love interest Matthew was sweet I didn't feel like I got to know him well enough to form a crush on him, again this may be something that develops throughout the series though.

I found it hard to believe that Claire's mum wasn't more understanding when she dropped the massive bombshell on her.  While I could understand Marie keeping the secret until Claire was old enough to fully take in the fact that she was going to become a werewolf it didn't make sense to me that she then refused to give Claire any more information about what was happening to her and what life would be like when she had completed her change.  I just would have expected a parent to be more supportive in the circumstances but perhaps that is just me.  With regards to the rogue werewolf, I enjoyed reading the scenes that were written from their point of view.  I had 2 suspects from very early on in the book and although I swung from one to the other and then back again I was almost disappointed to find out my suspicions about one of them were correct - I'd have liked it to be a little harder to work out who the killer was.

Overall I thought Claire de Lune was an enjoyable story and a good start to a new series.  Most of the novel is more character driven rather than action packed but the fight scenes towards the end were very well written.  While it wasn't my favorite young adult paranormal romance I'm still interested to see where Christine Johnson takes us with this series.

Source: Received for review from publisher Simon & Schuster

Other Reviews:

If you have reviewed this book on your blog please leave a link to your review in the comments & I'll add the link here.


  1. It's a shame this wasn't as good as you hoped, I have read another review that felt the same way too. Hopefully it's a series that gets better with the next book!

  2. Terrific review - shame it didnt live up to your expectations :(
    Still looking forward to reading it :D

  3. Love that honest review! I have found, via experience, that books "just" about Weres are not as good for me. It's just not enough to keep me satisfied, that's why I didn't like Stray by Rachel Vincent.

  4. @ Rhiana - Although it wasn't quite what I'd expected I'm still curious about where the series will go from here so I'm looking forward to trying the next book & hopefully it will be one of those ones that improve :o)

    @ asamum - I hope you enjoy it, it wasn't a terrible book by any means - I think my expectations were just too high lol. I'll be interested to see what you think of it :o)

    @ Kelli - I do like character driven novels but I have to say I tend to prefer ones with more action in them :o) I actually really liked Stray & the rest of that series so it's a shame you didn't get on with them. It would be a boring world if we all liked exactly the same things though LOL



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