Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick


Nora Grey is trying her best to do well in a summer school chemistry class, find a part-time job, and keep up with a group of dubious friends. Adding to this frenzy of activity is a difficult relationship with Patch, her guardian angel, the unsolved mystery of her father's brutal murder, and an often-absent mother. Interwoven into the complications of Nora's life is the escalating conflict between a band of fallen angels and their Nephilim hosts, which may soon take its toll on all of mankind. This sequel relies on the reader having knowledge of its predecessor, Hush, Hush (Simon & Schuster, 2009 / VOYA December 2009). Unfortunately a short recap does not appear until the middle of the book. Nora, the story's narrator, is a walking contradiction. She is an outstanding student who continues act foolishly. She is a self-professed good girl who has no trouble using a fake identification card, dressing provocatively, visiting shady pool halls, and slugging people. She steals her nemesis's diary, but is too ethical to read it. She trusts bad-boy Patch with her life (even though he tried to kill her in the prequel), but not with another girl. Although Nora's sensual dream sequences advance the story and add romance while keeping her innocent, they come across as contrived insertions. More information about the paranormal world the archangels inhabit may have made up for an overly long story with unlikable characters, a convoluted time frame, and contrived plot twists.

Product Details
Pub. Date: October 2010
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing
Format: Hardcover , 427pp
ISBN-13: 9781416989431
ISBN: 1416989439

My thoughts:
I ordered this book for myself a few months ago but just got a chance to read it now. I started it, then decided I needed to reread hush, hush first since it had been over a year since I had read it. Even without rereading the first book I would have been fine, anything that you needed to know from the first book was reviewed briefly, but I was still glad to have had it all fresh in my mind.

I like both Nora and Patch, but I am not totally sure I buy their relationship. Even in the first one, which I loved the first time I read, I kind of wondered upon rereading if they really had a relationship as such. This time they are happy to begin the story and then life and angels get in the way and complicate matters. That said, this book drew me in and I read it in two days. I just had to keep going to find out what was going to happen next. Fitzpatrick does a great job pulling the reader in and keeping the reader engaged and needing to know what will happen next. I can see this being popular with young adults, who after all are the intended audience for the book. I read the first book last summer as part of an advance readers group. I mentally noted when the second book was coming out at that time because I knew I wanted to read more about Nora and Patch.

I still have issues about Nora being left alone so much by her mother especially as more and more about her mother and her family is revealed throughout the story. Also, I questioned the need for her father to have died at all. His death wasn’t covered very much in the first book, but many more details are revealed in this book. The flashback to him at the beginning of the book was helpful in showing the kind of man he was before his death.

This is a book I would recommend to readers regardless of whether or not they had read the first book.


  1. I liked Crescendo too but had the same thought when reading it. No way would I be leaving any of my teenagers home alone so much. Patch didn't seem quite so snarky in this installment and I kind of missed that. I am looking forward to the next book and seeing how the story ends up. Great review!

  2. I think I will read this b/c I read the first one as ARC ages ago and liked it well enough. great review!