Masque of the Red Death (Masque of the Red Death, #1) by Bethany Griffin

Masque of the Red Death (Masque of the Red Death, #1)Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Based on Poe's dark story of never cheating Death, Bethany Griffin's Masque of the Red Death set in a world where disease has ravage the land and it's people. Streets are filled with death and corpse collectors come to take the dead away. The rich who wear porcelain masks, blank faces that walk the streets and protect the wearer from disease, waste their times at clubs, waiting for death themselves....

Araby is part of this protected rich because of her father the inventor of these masks has given her the privilege. Araby though suffers from guilt of just being alive after the death of her twin. As she wastes her days just trying to go numb in the Debauchery Club, she's thrown into the plan of uprising against the sadistic Prince Prospero.

The world of MOTRD was at times very vague, perhaps a homage to Poe's original story? Nevertheless this gave the story a slow start, the focus was on the damage the disease has done to the world and in the YA genre this is pretty common place. Slowly the world starts to bloom, with danger around every corner, and the small element of steampunk added a great element. Soon the focus lands on the people.

Araby was an usual character who I grew to like, while at times I wish she just wouldn't get swept away by the tide, she showed alot strengths in her love, loyalty and big heart as she does what she can for those around her.
Like many of the characters, a dark cloud of death always looms over any true happiness, but there are bright moments of hope that pull at the reader's heart and gives hope even in the darkness hour.

The characters prove their not just two dimensional, this of course leads to the two main guys in Araby's life that brings her out of her numbness Elliott and Will. I am not a fan of love triangles, even when the good ones, and this is a good one. Both have their positive and negative and I truly couldn't pick one over the other. Araby often gets caught in their webs, and their actions always left me cold with the pain and heartbreak they caused. This only proved they were just human, and with any relationship trust in earn and broken just as easily.

The great lead up toward the end left me frustrated and hungry for more. The almost sudden ending would have been better if it had a slow wind down or an extra chapter.

While I greatly enjoyed the book, and look forward to see what Griffin has in store. I just couldn't get over the elements that made me wanna pull my hair out. And perhaps many things will be resolved or made stronger the sequel...

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