Sunday, June 26, 2011

Book Review: A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young

Release Date: June 21, 2011
Published by: Balzer + Bray

Book trailer:

A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young

We all want to be remembered. Charlotte's destiny is to be Forgotten... 

Charlotte’s best friend thinks Charlotte might be psychic. Her boyfriend thinks she’s cheating on him. But Charlotte knows what’s really wrong: She is one of the Forgotten, a kind of angel on earth, who feels the Need—a powerful, uncontrollable draw to help someone, usually a stranger. 

But Charlotte never wanted this responsibility. What she wants is to help her best friend, whose life is spiraling out of control. She wants to lie in her boyfriend's arms forever. But as the Need grows stronger, it begins to take a dangerous toll on Charlotte. And who she was, is, and will become--her mark on this earth, her very existence--is in jeopardy of disappearing completely. 

Charlotte will be forced to choose: Should she embrace her fate as a Forgotten, a fate that promises to rip her from the lives of those she loves forever? Or is she willing to fight against her destiny--no matter how dark the consequences.

Ten likes/dislikes:

1. (+) Charlotte, the Protagonist - You know how there are a lot of books with girls who tend to be self-sacrificing?  Well, Charlotte puts them all to shame.  She has an incredibly good heart when dealing with such a tough situation and she also stands up for herself and her friends.  Her loyalty and fierce personality with her smart-ass comments were a nice addition, and because I really liked Charlotte, I was able to empathize with her situation that much more.
2. (+) The Idea - I haven't really read many angel books, and whether or not Charlotte's an angel is left up to the reader.... but nonetheless, Suzanne Young really turns the scales with her interpretation of good and evil, of good deeds and their lasting mark on all of us.  It was a really well developed supernatural idea that I'm not likely to forget for a long, long time.
3. (+) The Message - The author doesn't press the message on you.  It sort of just comes with the idea, you know?  And I'm glad, because it allows each and every one of us to find our own message within Charlotte's tale.  These kind of books among others are the ones that really get you thinking about them.
4. (+) The Other Characters - The rest of the characters were well developed.  Even if I only got a few slices of their lives--by nature, since Charlotte's consumed by the Need and is losing her time--I still felt like I had a sense of who they really were.  At first, admittedly, I didn't like Sarah, Charlotte's best friend, but she grew on me, and I particularly loved Charlotte's family dynamic and how her past comes into play there.
5. (+) The Romance - At first, I was a tad concerned, because in the beginning, some of the descriptions hinted at a sort of dependence I'm not fond of, but it was a wrong assumption.  Harlin and Charlotte, at the start of the story, have been together for two years, and Charlotte has her own life outside of him.  Plus, the romance between them was not only steamy at some points but also tragic and touching at others.  And I didn't think that a guy who drives a motorcycle and dropped out of high school (typical "bad" boy) would have such a good heart, but Harlin is a wonderful romantic interest.
6. (--) The Ending - I really wish the last two pages were not included.  I already knew that there'd be a sequel--A WANT SO WICKED--and Charlotte basically tells you what the focus of the next book will be... So I would've preferred that last line, which by the way was so beautiful and fitting, to the last two pages. They just made for an ambiguous ending that I would have rather read about in the start of the next book.
7. (--) Pattern - I just listed out all the Needs Charlotte has in the course of this book to make sure I wasn't bringing this up falsely.... I couldn't find a pattern.  I personally would have liked it if her Needs grew more drastic just as they grew in intensity for her, but mostly they seemed the same.  It wasn't like she helped a family out and then saved a life--it was like constant saving of lives.  Sorry, this is just nitpicky of me... I did think the Needs growing more intense and the consequences therein were really interesting though and added a lot to the story.
8. (+) Writing - It's easy to slip into Charlotte's world.....  I loved the characters names... the way Charlotte's transformation kept building and building... the power of the Need and seeing the situations people were in... etc. etc.  The details in this story make it even more poignant. Her writing makes this possible.
9. (+) Pacing - The only time I put the book down was because I was so exhausted I couldn't see the words anymore.  That being said, once the book gets its hook in you, you won't want to let go.  The book has constant tension... it sort of reminds me of character-driven fantasy in that way.  I don't know if I'd actually call it that because Charlotte's Need isn't really realizing things about herself so much as her abilities, but it has that same sort of feel, in my opinion at least.
10. (+) The Cover - It's incredible.  It captures the essence of what Charlotte is so well while still maintaining the same tragic tone of the book.  I love how the colors and her hair all swirl together like that.

This book is one you don't want to miss.  It has an absolutely unforgettable premise with such drastic circumstances that make Charlotte's relationships and the loss thereof even more heartbreaking.  You'll want to keep reading until the end.


  1. I don't think I've seen a single negative review of this! I can't wait to read it :)

  2. This sounds fantastic! Great review. I've heard such good things about this one all over the place!

  3. this looks like such a good book! I really want to read it!


  4. Great review! I really want to read this book. Thanks for commenting on my IMM post!

  5. Great review! I wasn't too into this book. There are so many angel books, yet this book has a different story compared to others. :)


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