01 The Write Elements: August 2016

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Curse of the Warmbloods - Suzanne Collins

Suzanne Collins being Suzanne Collins obviously has to write thrilling, totally unique adventures; and she's come up with a fascinating story with this series. Apparently the books have had lots of cover art done up but I like this the best, by far. 

Unfortunately I could only find book 3 at time so I had to be clued in, but other than not getting in on the action of the last two books, we still get a clear depiction of what happened. 

This is the third installment of the Underland Chronicles, in which Gregor must stop a plague from spreading through the Underland. With two prophecies fulfilled, Gregor is now focused on the Prophecy of Blood, which calls for Gregor and Boots to return to the Underland to help ward off a plague. But this time, his mother refuses to let him go . . . unless she is allowed to travel with them.

When they arrive in the subterranean city, the plague is spreading -- and it claims one of Gregor's closest companions. Only then does Gregor start to understand how the illness plays with the fate of all warm-blooded creatures. But how can he help combat it?

The series is definitely for a younger audience, so it's nowhere near as gruesome as The Hunger Games.

The focus was heavy on Gregor "the Overlander" and new characters Hamnet and his son Hazard, whom I absolutely adore!

Because I'm not absolutely sure of the previous books I'm not sure if there's a significant character development for Gregor but you can tell how strong-willed he is. Mad love for him. And of course you can a sense of how great Temp (the story is seriously good for me to actually like a roach) and Ripred, which (which?) incidentally is meant to be Suzanne's favourite character. 

The journey to find the cure also revolves around Gregor's mum, Ash - a large. head-strong bat - and a number of other Underlanders. Obviously they've been hit by the dilapidating disease. 

Reading on there's no continuous action scenes since there's no way to always be attacking something, even if the plants surround you. 

That being said, the fights are epic. Not so much for what happens during but the before and after effect. 
The safest example would be Boots stumbling upon "fogs" - poisonous frogs - while playing with H and Frill. 
Collins really knows how to build the suspense at the right times. You can imagine the situation before you and only great writers can give you the idea. 
So when the frogs were just sailing through the air and landing wherever I had moments where it was tunnel vision - didn't realise a thing that was going on around me except for that moment. 
I was so sucked in to the events that I had to re-read certain...things to see what I missed. 

I honestly had the best ah-ha moment figuring out the riddle.

Turn and turn and turn again.
You see the what but not the when.
Remedy and wrong entwine,
And so they form a single vine.

Warmblood now a bloodborne death,
Will rob your body of its breath,
Mark your skin, and seal your fate.
The Underland becomes a plate.

Bring the warrior from above
If yet his heart is swayed by love.
Bring the princess or despair,
No crawlers care without her there.

Those whose blood runs red and hot
Must join to seek the healing spot.
In the cradle find the cure
For that which makes the blood impure.

Gnawer, human, set aside
The hatreds that reside inside.
If the flames of war are fanned,
All Warmbloods lose the Underland.

I just knew what would end up being the... end of the story.
Those gut calls make it a lot more fun to read a mystery. The plot and writing help otherwise the riddle is slightly confusing, turning round and round, after all.
SUCH a major twist, it was hard to guess in the beginning. There's always a perilous journey, though. And you always wish they wouldn't have to really go for one. 
What I didn't expect was the sudden deaths. They were Really unexpected and absolutely heartbreaking. I had started falling in love with the characters - even within the short time I got to know them from the book. 
(No reveal cause if I do...it's too cruel)

Though everything has its purpose, who wants to see a good guy die? I can't imagine writing it so I always wonder what the author thinks at that moment. 

It's definitely a recommended read. 

If I spoil this book I'll never forgive myself. So please let me know what you think when you've read it

*prepares virtual tissues*