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Down with the Shine by Kate Karyus Quinn

Down with the Shine

by Kate Karyus Quinn

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557214,390 (2.94)None



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A 17-year-old "white trash" girl discovers she has the power to grant wishes, but those wishes don't turn out like the wishers intended.

An excellent premise that, sadly, falls short in its execution. I sense there could've been more edits and rewrites to really polish the hidden gem of a story that IS in Down with the Shine. The biggest problem, for me, was the inconsistent tone: what started off dark and foreboding quickly deescalated into a mess of silliness. I couldn't take any of the teenagers seriously at all, and I think that's an injustice to real teens. Lennie's crush, Smith, was a major douche and her best "friend," Dylan, a textbook narcissist, was equally douche-y. Apparently, Lennie's self-esteem is so crappy she's able to see that toxicity but she's too apathetic to do anything about it?! I won't even address the "romance" between Lennie and Smith which made me cringe repeatedly; thus, I didn't respect Lennie at all. And what's up with W2? One minute he's sexually assaulting Lennie, the next he's part of the group?! Lots of mixed messages everywhere.

Don't get me wrong, I'm a HUGE fan of horror comedies, but that's one of the trickiest subgenres to pull off; it takes a skilled hand at balancing the grotesque right next to the funny, and it requires subtlety. Otherwise it ends up just being ridiculous.

Yet, I could not put this book down last night because I wanted to know how it would all turn out. That's a testament to the idea more than the actual story, though. Darn it that was such a GREAT premise... Then I read the blurbs for the author's other two books and I almost want to read those because their ideas sound downright tantalizing. But am I willing to risk another three hours? I don't know yet.

3 stars (because I feel in my gut that Quinn had a good story there, somewhere, underneath all the flaws) ( )
  flying_monkeys | Aug 26, 2016 |
Rating: 3

I really enjoyed this book. The pace was dead on. The plot line was unique. There was constant action, and the characters made you root for them. I had some pretty high expectations going into this book, and they were met. If you want an entertaining thriller with a pinch of magic, this the book for you.

I loved the friendships and relationships. I loved how the author made even the villains somewhat heroic, though let's face it, the dad is just one messed up guy. And on top of the entertainment factor, the book also shows that bad choices have real consequences, and not everyone can wish their way out of the aftermath.

I loved the ending on this book. It would have been so easy to go the easy route, but the author chose to make things more difficult, and therefore more believable. End the end, I didn't get the sad ending I was expecting. I got a hopeful one.

This story, though entertaining, doesn't shy away from being a bit gritty. There's abuse, murder, lots of death, and tricky situations. Almost everything was wrapped up at the end, but I'm still left to wonder what happened with Smith's mom, because that was messed up. I really liked Smith's transition from brooding to charming. Lennie didn't make it easy on him by being overly sensitive, but things worked out in the end. When I was reading the finial chapter, I was crossing my fingers wondering if anything would happen between them. I love the way the author handled it.

All in all, this was a great book with an important lesson. I'll definitely be reading more from this author in the future. If you like this book, you might like [b:The Compound|2696181|The Compound (The Compound, #1)|S.A. Bodeen|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1441643571s/2696181.jpg|2721510] [bc:The Compound|2696181|The Compound (The Compound, #1)|S.A. Bodeen|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1441643571s/2696181.jpg|2721510]. It doesn't have magic, but they both have a thrills and an ultimate creep factor. ( )
  ZetherBooks | Jun 15, 2016 |
When the book first started out, I was sure that I was going to LOVE it. The first few chapters were deliciously dark, with a girl (Lennie) whose father is a notorious bank robber (and apparently still on the run) and whose best friend was chopped up into pieces and left in a suitcase. The darkness was JUST RIGHT and wonderful.

And then it stopped.

And then the author apparently decided to switch from creepy darkness to light and fluffy comedy, and my head was spinning wondering why in the world she would decide to do that.

The rest of the book was crap. I do not mince words. ;)

So instead of being a creepy story about wishes coming true in a sense, it was like "oh hahaha this guy asked for balls of steel and now his balls are literally made of steel hahahaha isn't that sooooo funny?"

That was not what I wanted to read, and not what the first few chapters were like, so the switch to comedy was bizarre and weird. I ended up powering through the book hoping that it would get better, but it didn't. In fact, the way that the book ended and the conclusion were both pretty meh. Throw in a completely unnecessary and rather stupid love story, and that's the book in a nutshell.

Also, when Dylan was first brought back to life, she was asleep - so soundly, in fact, that they couldn't wake her up even when shaking her. But then she just sort of woke up and no one questioned it or made a big deal about it or even asked her "hey, when did that happen?"

Another thing - it was made sort-of clear that Smith, Lennie's love interest, was being at least molested by his mother. There was one scene that made that clear, and it was never addressed again. WHY in the world would this be introduced (and that is a BIG THING) and then it never be brought up again in the story? I have no idea what this book is except a huge mishmash of poorly thought out plots that do not mesh well at all.

I have no idea what this book was trying to be, but it didn't do anything for me. Meh. The cover is absolutely gorgeous, and that is virtually the only good thing I have to say about the book (except that the first few chapters were GREAT and I am not sure why the author decided to leave the creepiness behind - VERY disappointing). ( )
  schatzi | Jun 12, 2016 |
"May all your wishes come true, or at least this one!"

A common enough toast, but one that turns out poorly in this book. I liked the way this started, with Lennie and her background of a super dysfunctional family ("Yeah, we were watching "Road House" and you know how that movie always makes him real emotional...") and a best friend who had been brutally murdered. And I liked the twist of the wish granting and the moonshine. But, for me, it got a little "silly" after that, with wishes like Cheetos midas, bat wings, etc. And it also went into the fantasy realm as well, which didn't appeal to me. And exactly how big was Michaela's house anyway? Anyway, loved the set up, not a fan of the execution. In the book's defense, it was labeled "Teen" by my library, so there's that. And, for me, I'd say it should be older teen, as it has a whole lot of f words in it. ( )
  Stahl-Ricco | May 11, 2016 |
I wasn't sure about DOWN THE SHINE when I decided to give it a try, but it ended up being a neat and unique story.

I really enjoyed the way that Lennie's magic worked. On top of her neat gift, Lennie was an interesting character and I found her pretty humorous. Lennie's Uncles really brought some more fun to the story. They are pretty crazy, but n a fun way. I enjoyed the overall storyline while Lennie learns how important it is to be careful what you wish for.

So why the 3 star rating? There was a LOT of weird going on. There is some cool mixed in, but there is just too many things that were way out there that made me roll my eyes or make a 'you've got to be kidding me' expression. There was some really odd dialogue is some situations that really didn't need to be in the story. The relationship between Lennie and Smith just didn't do anything for me. There was a lot of on again, off again and just not enough spark.

All in all though, it was a neat read and I'm glad I gave it a shot.

* This book was provided free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  STACYatUFI | Apr 27, 2016 |
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