Half Wild - Book Review
Book #2 in the Half Bad Trilogy
UK Publisher: Penguin UK
After finally meeting his elusive father, Marcus, and receiving the three gifts that confirm him as a full adult witch, Nathan is still on the run. He needs to find his friend Gabriel and rescue Annalise, now a prisoner of the powerful Black witch Mercury. Most of all he needs to learn to control his gift — a strange, wild new power that threatens to overwhelm him.
Meanwhile, Soul O’Brien has seized control of the Council of White Witches and is expanding his war against the Black witches into Europe. In response, an unprecedented alliance has formed between Black and White witches determined to resist him. Drawn into the rebellion by the enigmatic Black witch Van Dal, Nathan finds himself fighting alongside both old friends and old enemies. But can all the rebels be trusted, or is Nathan walking into a trap?
This is the second book in Sally Green’s Half Bad Trilogy and much like the first book, it took me several chapters to get into. However once I fell back into the rhythm of Nathan’s unique voice, I quickly found myself swept up in the story and enjoyed each and every page of it.
Nathan now has his magical gift, but before he can use it, he must learn to control it. Yet with the White witches now organising, and targeting all who stand in the way of their new “Kill all Black Witches” regime, Nathan does not have the luxury of time. Joining the alliance of rebels - a group of White witches, Black witches and half codes - whose objection is to bring down the Council of White Witches, Nathan finds himself fighting alongside new friends and to his surprise — old enemies. But as more witches flee to the rebel cause, the chance of betrayal rises, and Nathan has more than his own life at stake…
Sally Green has a fresh writing style that, while I don't think everyone will enjoy, I myself really like. Because despite the story being about witches, she paints a very realistic, very plausible world where secret wars could really be happening, and the battle between good and evil is not at all black and white.
The story is told form Nathan’s POV and I love his simple way of viewing things. While his thoughts can sometime be a little disjointed, they are realistic for someone who has suffered through many years of both physical and mental abuse. However in this book, Nathan is a stronger and more confident character. Not only is he beginning to trust more and expand his circle of friends, but for the first time he has faith in his own abilities and is making the transition from boy to man.
However what I love most about his character is his blatant refusal to be moulded into something he isn’t. For years, only a few people have insisted he is a good person, while many others say his blood makes him evil. Yet Nathan follows his own path and has started to realise that people have the ability to be both good and bad, and that in reality, everyone is just a shade of grey. Himself included.
Yet all the characters in this book are pretty special. There is not a single dull character among them and they all bring something extra to the story. I especially liked how characters from the previous book who we labeled as evil, were now fighting alongside Nathan, even though many of their beliefs and personalities conflicted, showing that opposing sides can indeed work together.
The romance was all a big thing in this book. Nathan I think is beginning to come to terms with his sexuality, and realise that maybe he isn't just straight, but potentially bi-sexual instead. Since I’m actually hoping he will end up with Gabriel, I think this is awesome - however for readers who are uncomfortable with gay romances - this book may not be your thing. However the romance only plays a small part of a much bigger story, so it would be a shame to not read this book for that reason alone as Half Wild has so much to offer.
In terms of plot, this book was much more action based than the last one. I admit the beginning was quite slow going, but that was mostly Nathan trying to understand his gift and I myself found that really interesting. However the plot really picks up about halfway through and you will find yourself flying through the pages.
Overall, Half Wild is an original and darkly intriguing read. However it is one of those special sort of books that you either love it or you hate it. Personally, I cannot get enough and am looking forward to the final instalment of the trilogy, Half Lost, which will release in March 2016.
I give Half Wild 4 stars!