Review: Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff

Publisher: Razorbill
Release Date: August 14, 2014
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher via First To Read
Series: N/A
Genre(s): Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Synopsis from Goodreads:

Clementine DeVore spent ten years trapped in a cellar, pinned down by willow roots, silenced and forgotten.

Now she’s out and determined to uncover who put her in that cellar and why.

When Clementine was a child, dangerous and inexplicable things started happening in New South Bend. The townsfolk blamed the fiendish people out in the Willows and burned their homes to the ground. But magic kept Clementine alive, walled up in the cellar for ten years, until a boy named Fisher sets her free. Back in the world, Clementine sets out to discover what happened all those years ago. But the truth gets muddled in her dangerous attraction to Fisher, the politics of New South Bend, and the Hollow, a fickle and terrifying place that seems increasingly temperamental ever since Clementine reemerged.

Special thanks to Penguin First to Read for providing me with an advance copy for review! All quotes are taken from an advance copy and may be changed for final publication.

I’d been living on dreams so long it was hard to know if any one of the fifteen things happening inside my head was real.

Fiendish is a book that immediately draws the reader in. Told, at least in the beginning, from an unreliable narrator, you are completely blind about Clementine’s past and present situations. Brenna Yovanoff’s writing creates an eerie and creepy tone for the entire book. But one thing that I absolutely loved about this one, was that there were aspects of light and happiness meshed in amongst the darkness. Take Clementine’s name, for example. Fisher’s “talent,” I’ll call is as not to spoil. The light and the dark was balanced beautifully.

One thing that I was not expecting was the amount of detailed descriptions. Yovanoff’s writing went deep, created emotion, and most importantly crafted a beautiful story. You could vividly see the character’s, their surroundings, and the scenes in your mind. For a paranormal book, I find it hard to do, so this was wonderful.

Another thing I really enjoyed was the way Clementine’s character was written. Being trapped alone for ten years, since she was seven, Clementine had no interaction with others. I thought that Yovanoff did a great job of creating a character that was older, but still naïve and young at heart.

Eric Fisher is another character that I absolutely loved! Talk about dangerous “bad boy,” I spent the entirety of the book swooning over him. You will, too.

Now, there was one thing that I didn’t really like about this book and that was the side characters. I just didn’t really like their personalities, and I felt like they were kind of annoying. Thankfully, that didn’t take away from me liking the book too much.

Overall, Fiendish is a paranormal/urban fantasy with beautiful writing an intriguing story and filled with creepiness. I couldn’t help but see a similar tone in this book and the Beautiful Creatures series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Think Beautiful Creatures + Salem Witch Trials. I’d definitely recommend this book for fans of fantasy and paranormal alike!

12 thoughts on “Review: Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff

  1. I’m glad that it’s not all dark, and that the narrator doesn’t stay unreliable. (Two things I don’t like) I’m curious about the paranormal aspects. You certainly made me want to read the book.

  2. I really enjoyed Paper Valentine – the story and the characters were so unusual and different. Fiendish sounds amazing (and yay for a swoony love interest). Can’t wait to read it myself! Great review. 🙂

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