Archives for January 2016

January 7, 2016

Review: Sage’s Eyes by V.C. Andrews

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

It was as if I had traveled through time and for a moment lived and understood the life I would never have.

Sixteen-year-old Sage is a lonely child. Her adoptive parents watch her obsessively, as if studying her for warning signs of…something. And maybe they’re right to – even she can’t make sense of the strange things she sees and hears. She possesses knowledge that other teenagers don’t, that her parents and teachers-no adult-could possibly have.

So when Sage finally makes a friend who understands her alarming gift, he becomes her confidant, a precarious link to the truth about who she really is. For Sage and the alluring new boy at school share many things in common. Perhaps, they’ll learn, far too many things.

Expected Publication: January 26, 2016

I have been a huge fan of V.C. Andrews novels since I first discovered them when I was about 9 years old – so about 26 years ago. In fact, the first website I ever created was actually a V.C. Andrews fan and roleplay site called Midnight Whispers (and no, we will not discuss how ugly the first incarnations were) and I kept it around for years – approximately 8 years, in fact. I have loved both the original VCA books and even some of the books written by the ghostwriter, Andrew Neiderman – and chances are that if you have enjoyed a V.C. Andrews, you have read and also liked one written by Neiderman as he has written every one of the books since V.C. Andrews’ death in 1986. While My Sweet Audrina is my most favorite of all of the books, my favorite Andrew Neiderman written book is still Ruby. Interestingly enough, the Landry series is actually a tiny Easter egg in Sage’s Eyes.

I won’t lie. I miss the old magic of the older Neiderman stories. Even if they were slightly formulaic, they were at least intriguing and sucked you into the story. The newer ones … maybe it’s because they were so much shorter (instead of 5 book series they’ve been cut down to two books or even standalone novels that seem rushed) but the characters aren’t nearly as fleshed out, the storylines seem to become more and more outrageous, often feeling like things are added for simple shock value and they’re following trends – I highly doubt that V.C. Andrews would have ever written a vampire series … And sadly, Sage’s Eyes is no different.

I wanted to like Sage but quite honestly, in the attempt of trying to make her otherworldly and wise beyond her years, Sage just comes across as a bitter know-it-all who clearly needs to grow a backbone and learn how to confront her clearly unstable parents. The book was very slow, in fact it dragged. I felt like the same lines were said over and over again. “Your parents care for you, they know best.” “Don’t give up on your parents, Sage.” “Have you had any visions?” “Don’t talk about your visions.” Rinse and repeat. I was pretty sure where the story was going (for the most part) when Sage finds some interesting bones hidden in the house. I’m disappointed that the bones weren’t discussed further, which leads me to assume that there is a sequel in the works even though I haven’t found any information on a possible sequel. There were a few things that were left unanswered, besides the bones and I don’t understand why they were left that way, things that were mentioned several times, such as young appearances.

SPOILER: My biggest issue with this particular novel is that if you’re going to write a story about the Wiccan religion, which is an actual religion, at least get facts straight or don’t use the term Wiccan. If you want to write a book about magick and spirituality, that’s fine. Make up a magical religion for your character, call her a witch but don’t call it Wiccan unless it’s actually based in some sort of fact. Otherwise it’s a slap in the face to any actual Wiccans that are reading the story. I’d be just as annoyed if I read a book where the character was supposed to be Catholic and was portrayed like sacrificing newborns or stoning non-virgins was an everyday occurrence.

Sage’s Eyes isn’t the worst book I’ve read. But it’s also not very good and to have V.C. Andrews name on it, to me, is a shame. It doesn’t contain any of the old VCA or Neiderman magic. It truly feels rushed, is repetitive and seems incomplete. If you’re looking for a quick read, it certainly fits. If you’re looking for a gripping, family saga, this is not it. Personally, it wasn’t my cup of tea at all. I hate to be so blunt, but I am honest.