My first review!
Instinct (Chronicles of Nick book 6)
by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Content Issues: Slight language. Violence. Snarky characters.
Sherrilyn Kenyon has several series out. Only one of them is specifically made for the Young Adult audience. You follow Nick Gautier (pronounced Go-Shay), a teen in New Orleans, Louisiana as he finds out about his destiny, the supernatural that is all around him and still try and make it through high school. Nick’s problem? He’s going to bring about Armageddon if he’s not careful. It’s already happened once.
My problem with this book is that it’s been forever since I read the first 5 and this one picks up the day after book 5 ended. It shouldn’t be too bad, right? You’ll be able to pick it up as you go along. Besides, Kenyon has said of her series that it shouldn’t matter whether you pick up the first book or the last, she writes so anyone will understand. And that’s all well and good, until you get a book like this one. I felt that a good chunk of the book was exposition. So much explanation needed to explain who certain characters were and there are so many characters that are in here. So many people/creatures to keep track of. And if this is one of my well-loved series and I just finished the book before, than all this explanation isn’t necessary. But if not? Please keep a piece of paper handy to take notes. This is also complicated by the fact that I know how Nick’s story was supposed to end up. It was not a pretty ending. My heart aches for poor Nicky, but that was a different timeline.
Wild spoilers may appear from here on out. Keep your arms and legs inside the vehicle.
In previous books we find out that Nick’s father was a Malachi demon and it’s an inherited trait. He’s big in the demon world and everyone hates the Malachi (and the Malachi hates everyone right back). They are creatures born of hate. Nick’s different though. Nick was raised by a person who loved him and that love is pretty much the only hope humanity has. If Nick can overcome the hate of his demon nature, the apocalypse may not happen. He’s not sure who to trust. The demon Malphas, who has been Nick’s best friend for years has been afflicted by a mysterious illness and is out for the count. Nick’s mother has been stolen, then found, then put under a mysterious sleeping spell. Nick it seems has been losing bits of time (but of course, there’s no explanation of that anywhere), it’s raining blood outside the school and oh yeah, Death, AKA Grimm is still out to end Nick and the Malachi bloodline.
So, there’s a lot that I do like about the book. I like a smart-alec boy as a main character. I like that this isn’t a love story. I like the lesson to be careful who your friends are. I like that the girl love interest isn’t a simpering wimp. Nick value’s her opinion and strives to be a better guy than the one she knows (the one he’s supposed to grow up to be, the one who slaughters her whole family…. so, you know… it’s tough to love a guy like that, but she manages). I like that Nick always respects his momma. I like that Nick will not stand for bullying or for talking bad about someone else. I like that Nick isn’t as carefree as he seems, he still worries, he’s still got the same self-esteem issues and has to work through them. I like that he’s always trying to help others out and thinking of others.
I don’t like the aforementioned ridiculous amounts of explanation about who everyone is. It wasn’t necessary to the story and felt like padding. Sure, a certain amount of explanation is warranted, but this was excessive. It was only said a couple of times, and this is more a problem with Kenyon’s other series, but it grated on my nerve the like 2 times I saw it in this book. Referring to people as b****es. You do a lot for the feminism angle just having girls fighting, and then you throw that word around and I’m just, “ugh, no”. Find another word, please. The main plot felt rushed. There was no explanation (again) of why there would be a second Malachi for them to battle against and we never “see” this second Malachi appear. In the middle of the book, we have one line asking us to find this certain object to reset the time stream and I thought that was going to be the plot but nope. That doesn’t come in until the epilogue.
I guess now is the time to reread this series. I remember this series started with zombie football players and a video game. If nothing else, it passes the time before the 7th book in the series comes out later this year.
Don’t betray your friends, y’all!