For the record I really don't like not liking a book. It's awkward for both of us, kinda like a bad first date (this is implying that I have much more dating experience than I do). It keeps talking and talking. I keep searching for something, anything redeemable, that'll make me want to give this book a second chance.
Me and this book just aren't meant to be.
The biggest issue for me is that it just moves so slowly. Half this book is spent running errands or on training montages. Maybe other people are more interested in what it's like to be a personal assistant to someone rich and glamorous, but that's not me. There's life threatening danger, mystery and evil looming. Instead of action, we get the two main characters delivering chocolate or uploading photos.
Almost everything is revealed by eavesdropping through conveniently placed secret passageways (that the owners somehow don't realize lead right to Haven's room) and almost all the plot is conversationally driven. 500 pages of errands, training montages, eavesdropping leading up to 30 pages of action just doesn't work.
To make matters worse they listen to a bossy book written by a mysterious force (and don't expect to know who that is by the end of the book). The messages in the book are cryptic, vague, sometimes contradictory, and creepily similar to those weird motivation posters they put up in offices and schools.
You will learn inner strength--to a degree far greater than you have ever known--and physical strength. None of this will be easy; all of it will be necessaryI'm not the type of person to blindly follow a bossy book. Haven is supposed to be smart, but as it becomes more and more obvious that the hotel is dangerous the stupider she seems to become. At no point does she ever think "Let's just leave," but just keeps on running errands for her demon-boss even after the book tells her she's probably going to die.
There were some believability issues with Haven for me. She's supposed to be a tomboy who doesn't care about fashion, but whenever it comes to describing clothes it reads like a magazine. Turns out the author is actually also a celebrity magazine writer. I have problems when author's interject their voice into a character when it doesn't make sense. Logically Haven, head more likely found studying math than in a magazine, shouldn't be able to describe clothes that vividly.
Overall this book just didn't work for me. I hope other people, maybe those who like magazines or celebrities more, will find this book more appealing.
Thanks to Southern Book Bloggers for letting me participate in this ARC tour.