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103 of 111 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Need's Zara is Bella with a Backbone
Since finishing Breaking Dawn, I have been in a reading funk. My post paranormal romance pout came from Edward/Bella withdrawl and the conviction the no one could outdo Meyer but Meyer...until Carrie Jones' Need. Need filled my "need" (sorry for the unavoidable pun) for a deliciously dark romance with edgy action and mind-blowing paranormal fantasy. In fact, Need edged...
Published on December 27, 2008 by Jamie

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44 of 53 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Missing some of the story
I couldn't help wondering what happened to this book, because, in my opinion, parts of it were missing.

I like a tight story, I can think of several books that could have used some cutting; The Historian by Kostova and Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel are two examples. But this was brutal, I hardly had a chance to get to know the characters before the book was...
Published on February 16, 2009 by Jennifer L. Rinehart


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103 of 111 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Need's Zara is Bella with a Backbone, December 27, 2008
By 
Since finishing Breaking Dawn, I have been in a reading funk. My post paranormal romance pout came from Edward/Bella withdrawl and the conviction the no one could outdo Meyer but Meyer...until Carrie Jones' Need. Need filled my "need" (sorry for the unavoidable pun) for a deliciously dark romance with edgy action and mind-blowing paranormal fantasy. In fact, Need edged out Twilight in some important ways.

Main character Zara, grieving from her father's recent death, shows much more character arc than Meyer's Bella. In this page-turner, Zara transforms from a withdrawn, morose girl to a Laura Croft-style monster-whipping machine. Instead of waiting to be rescued by her gorgeous alpha male boyfriend, Zara hunts her hunters, turning the tables on them through her own ingenuity. This was a refreshing change from Meyer's Bella who is a strong, yet passive, damsel in distress. It was a relief to see Bella finally break out in Breaking Dawn (darn- another pun) and fight back- even if it was in a defensive/shield creating capacity. In Jones' Need, we don't have to wait four books for evidence of our heroine's backbone. A more comparable character to Zara would be Holly Black's strong and sarcastic Val in Valiant.

Zara's love interest, Nick, is hot and amazingly, as might be appreciated by conservatives looking for an edgy book that doesn't go too far, a virgin! Their first kiss is hot and pure with Zara comparing the feel of Nick's lips to an angel's breath. It melted my heart and set it pounding. It is every bit as romantic as Twilight's heart-stopping Chapter 13 "Meadow Scene."

Like Twilight, the setting in Need is unusual and interesting. The weather is equally miserable, this time deep Northeast winter. The frigid cold is a stark contrast to the hot romance and action brewing in this backwoods mystery town. The secondary characters are better in Need than in Twilight- particulary Zara's friends. Her quirky band of outsider pals share banter that is laugh-out-loud funny, breaking up intense moments of darkness and angst.

I highly recommend this book to any like me who are grieving the finish of Twilight. Need is an antedote and a promise that the renaissance of paranormal romance is far from over.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An intense page-turner, February 25, 2009
By 
Zara White lives in Charleston with her mother and stepfather. She loves running, is very active in Amnesty International and trying to save the world, and is a phobia buff; she knows each and every phobia by name, and even comes up with some that should have names. And then Zara's world falls apart --- her beloved dad dies from a heart attack.

After months of deep depression, Zara's desperate mom decides to send her up to Maine to live with her grandmother, which makes Zara very angry. Maine is frigidly cold with howling winds and lots of snow --- not the ideal for a southern gal. Slowly, though, with a few new friends and even a boyfriend prospect in handsome loner Nick, Zara begins to find her smile again. But that's not all she finds.

She first notices the eerie dark man outside her house the day her dad died. She sees him again at the airport, and then at her new school, and hears a voice calling her name. Two boys from school disappear. There is no way to prepare for what Zara is about to encounter. The evil being is the Pixie King, and he needs a queen. Zara and her friends do research and find that weres (werewolves and the like) are the natural enemy for pixies. And as luck would have it, this frigid Maine town has a handful of weres in the population as well. Zara and her friends begin the fight of their lives, and in the process uncover some deep family secrets that will forever change their world. She strives to save strangers with her volunteer work for Amnesty International, but will she be able to save herself and the ones she loves?

Carrie Jones brings readers an exciting venture filled with nasty evil creatures, nail-biting action and heart-pounding romance. She writes with an intense energy that electrifies each page and has a talent for description that brings the story to life (like Maine's charming winter). She has cleverly planned a prolific plot, building suspense and conflict, and revealing many hidden surprises and twists at just the right moment. Her vibrant characters thrive with life, especially Zara, who shares her entire self (including her hopes and fears) with readers. Zara also has a unique way of viewing life and the things around her: "There is something about libraries, old libraries, that makes them seem almost sacred. There's a smell of paper and must and binding stuff. It's like all the books are fighting against decay, against turning into dust, and at the same time fighting for attention."

NEED is an intense page-turner, sure to captivate young audiences with its charms and thrills.

--- Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman
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44 of 53 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Missing some of the story, February 16, 2009
By 
Jennifer L. Rinehart (United States of America) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
I couldn't help wondering what happened to this book, because, in my opinion, parts of it were missing.

I like a tight story, I can think of several books that could have used some cutting; The Historian by Kostova and Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel are two examples. But this was brutal, I hardly had a chance to get to know the characters before the book was done.

I don't think it's a spoiler to say there are pixies in this book, but the way all of the characters seem to accept it was a little too easy.

I liked the story idea, but it just didn't add up. Why would her mother send her to Maine? Considering what happened there all those years ago it seemed almost like she was trying to mess everything up. Why was Issie so bubbly? Why was she so oblivious to Devyn? Why wasn't everyone freaked out about the missing boys? I've never experienced such a wholehearted welcome at school and the friendliness of the students seemed trite and unreal.

On the positive side, I loved her Gram. I loved the little humorous bits. I wanted to know more of the day by day stuff, did she ever get her car registered? I know it's a bummer to write that part of the story, but skipping it is awkward.

Furthermore, why didn't anyone do anything about the pixies before?

Then again, I did finish it, which means it's at least ten times better than some of the books I've bought recently. I'm sending this to my little sister, I have a feeling that she'll end up liking it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 and 3/4 stars - Great read with a couple flaws, June 5, 2009
I really did devour this book, just like the book trailer said. It was a fun, fast paced read. I'm very much looking forward to the sequel to see what happens next. The twists and turns this story takes makes it exciting and fun to read. There were even a couple parts that literally had me scared, it gave me chills!

A lot of reviewers are comparing Need with Twilight, and I agree with the comparisons. It is very similar to Twilight in several ways, however, it *is* it's own story. And a good one. Better than Twilight, in my opinion. Zara is a much better and definitely more developed heroine than Bella. As a reader, you're sure to like Zara and everything she stands for. Our hero, Nick, is also a more realistic character than Edward ever was, and he has his flaws. Despite that I'm comparing Need to Twilight, I don't think it deserves to be compared (it's just bound to be) and I do think it deserves more praise.

That said, there were two minor flaws that irked me a little bit about Need. The first being that there were a couple plot holes, a couple things that didn't make sense or add up. Some readers might not even notice them:

(SPOILERS AHEAD!)

One that stuck out to me was why the King couldn't just fly over the iron ring. Maybe there was some reason, but whatever it was it was never explained and Zara never pondered it either when coming up with her plan so it left me wondering.
Some characters knew a lot one moment but the next moment they weren't sure what was going on... sorta seemed like they knew what they needed to know when it was convenient to the story to have them know it.
There were other little things, such as the fact that if someone has a bone break and come through the skin they *have* to have surgery to prevent an infection. No surgery was mentioned in the book, and it's a little goof anyway probably most people don't know that. Still. I do.

(END SPOILERS)

The second thing that irked me just a tad was the incredibly frequent use of the curse word "Jesus". I realize a huge population of our country doesn't find offense to that, but there are many many Christians out there who are bothered by it. I cringed every time one of the characters shouted it out (and it was the ONLY curse word used in the book, lame!)If you're going to use a curse word, Carrie Jones, use one that doesn't offend someone's religious beliefs please. (Why not also have them shout out "Mohammad!" here and there if it's ok? Oh, but wait, that would offend people...) Agree with Christianity or not, you don't have to offend us. And a good book doesn't have to have curse words anyway, I think a lot of authors make this sort of immature mistake.

But overall, I would definitely recommend this book. In my opinion, books like Twilight and Wicked Lovely can't hold a candle to Need. I'm very much looking forward to the sequel.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Anxtiey Teen Takes Control of Writing After Page 50, April 21, 2010
This review is from: Need (Paperback)
I have read a lot of books, and while not a fan of Twilight, I have to admit even they were better composed than this book. The first 50 or so pages were pretty good, but then dialogue just fell apart.
The level of awkwardness between the two main characters skyrocketed while the connection between them deteriorated. Their depth bottomed out, which was a shame becasue they all seemed to have a lot of potetional to be very intruiging and deep characters.
I've done a lot of tutoring for middle and high school children and honestly thought perhaps the author was very young, but to find that she graduated from an actual writing program shocked me. Additionally, it could have just been that my electonric version misttranslated over from the print, but there were even spelling and grammatical errors in it.
The plot sounded very intriguing, but was eventually full of so many holes I wasn't even able to finish it - and this is the first book for that to ever happen to me.
My advice: Stick to Holly Black, Melissa Marr, Kelly Armstrong, Rachel Vincent, Kim Harrison, or Tamora Pierce. Sorry Amazon, but this recommendation was a complete bust.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Well Deserved 5 Stars, February 6, 2009
I am almost thirty and still really enjoyed reading this YA book. I have ended up just skimming through plenty of books of the same genre due to boredom. This was definitely not one of those books. I was fully interested from beginning to end.

The characters are well developed and have believable relationships. The plot is predictable but still good. It does not have any vampires in it but does have shape shifters and pixies.

If you enjoyed reading Wicked Lovely, which I did, you will probably like this book, too. Both books have similarities, but Need is not a rip-off. Another book I recommend is Evernight, which does have vampires.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable read that NEEDs a little more, December 22, 2009
This review is from: Need (Hardcover)
Though strikingly similar to other young adult paranormal romances, Carrie Jones' Need was an enjoyable read, even if a predictable and choppy one. After her beloved father's death, Zara sinks into a depression that prompts her mother to send her to her grandmother's home in Maine. At the same time that she must adjust and make new friends, Zara must contend with her grief and the appearance of an apparent stalker. In addition, two different boys at the school take an interest in her and other boys around town start to disappear without apparent cause. Supernatural beings are afoot, some with sinister plans, and Zara ends up squarely in the middle of things.

Pros: Zara was a well-drawn character, complete with an obsession for naming phobias and for human rights work. She was a strong female lead who faced her perceived threats head-on, even if done foolishly. Though much of the plot was predictable, there were a few interesting twists regarding her family's history and the true purpose of the stalker. Some of the secondary characters had better development (e.g., Gram/Betty was a sassy delight) compared to other YA books. The depiction of Zara's grief was also done well. In those moments Zara was thinking back to her father, the emotional pull was strong and visceral. Finally, the romance, once developed, was sweetly sexy.

Cons: The writing was rough in many places, with a stilted voice, but it was unclear whether the author intended this to represent a teen voice or whether it was just poor writing. Plot development was predictable, with only a few twists or variations. Clues about the plot and the true identity of certain characters were dropped heavily and obviously, reducing suspense that might have existed otherwise. Despite little evidence, the characters were too willing to believe in (and act on) a specific supernatural explanation for the stalker. Also, some secondary characters, like Ian and Megan, were flat caricatures.

Regardless of these qualms with the first book, I know I'll plan to read the sequel, Captivate, one day when I need a little mind candy. I hope that Jones can tighten and smooth her writing in the sequel and work on flushing out some of the secondary characters.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Top Contender for Worst Book of All Time, July 29, 2011
This review is from: Need (Paperback)
Alright, so working in a bookstore sometimes you come across some pretty ridiculous looking books. Beach Vampire anyone? But as a child of the early 90's my threshold for cheese can be pretty high. I love The Lost Boys and all the Living Dead movies and sometimes if the moon is high in the sky, and the stars align, I can find a teen horror/paranormal book that I can enjoy in an equally cheesy fashion. Picking up and sifting through all of these books day after day I could only wonder if one of these books might not be the next milk based jackpot. One day I mentioned this to a coworker and was surprised to find that she too felt the same way. So putting our heads together we devised an ingenious plan to be able to read our way through these and still keep our dignity intact. The Bad Teen Book Book Club! Perfect! We would both take turns picking the worst of the worst and would read them together, secretly enjoying some, spurning others, and if any of our coworkers asked we could always respond with a roll of the eyes and say "Oh yeah, we're trying to outdo each other on the bad book scale. I didn't really want to read this one but you see she insisted . . ." And so with the plan in place we marched foreword and in the process found some comedic gold, some unexpected favorites, but mostly just bland, boring teen lit.

And then one day we picked up this.

It was amusing for awhile to talk about this one at work and watch other's reactions.

Me : So I got to the part where the villain is leaving sparkles everywhere.

Fellow Conspirator : I laughed so hard I cried. How on earth . . .?

Me : If I saw some dude pointing at me and then leaving sprinkles on the ground I'd think it was an escaped mental patient with a penchant for glitter, not a pixy king out to woo me.

FC : That pretty much sums it up right there doesn't it?

But soon even the novelty of that wore off as the looks on others faces suddenly went from baffled horror to straight up disgust. I found myself suddenly reluctant to be seen in public holding the thing. I had the vague, unpleasant sensation of being seen with slightly seedy porn. I took to covering the thing up with a stack of old Subway napkins when I left it in my car between lunch breaks, terrified someone might see it and know that I was in possession of fairy, incest wish fulfillment.

This book can best be summed up by World Stupidest Teenagers meet World's Stupidest Villain.

Zara is being haunted by a dark and brooding figure who follows her across state lines to her new home. This dark and evil creature stares at her across great distances and . . . points at her before vanishing. No really, that's it. He also leaves massive amounts of glitter in his wake but how that's supposed to be frightening is beyond me. Zara instantly makes new friends at school and, upon hearing her plight of woe about some stranger's pointer finger, instantly jump on the idea that he must be a malevolent supernatural force. A quick trip to their handy dandy neighborhood library that just HAPPENS to have ancient tomes on fairy lore handy reveals that Zara is being haunted by a Pixy King, which almost makes me feel sorry for the girl since she isn't even being haunted by a real fairy. It's like she got downgraded before the story even began. Also in the book are the ever memorable lines of, I kid you not, 'it's pretty rare for a pixy king to be interested in someone so you should be flattered, it also means you're probably not 100% human'. Weeee lookee me! I'm Carrie Jones! Writing a book is easy! Got any other fantastically easy ways to get the plot along with minimal effort that will solve all your writing problems that you can push out you lazy cow?

Anyway, I made it to the point where Zara starts arguing with her car after naming it Yoko and gave up. The situations were sloppily drawn, the characters little more than tools to keep the bland plot moving, and the incest implications more than unfortunate. I also found all the political stuff vaguely insulting since it's handled in such a sitcom, 7th heaven type way that it seems to cheapen rather than raise awareness to the various causes the author seems to be trying to promote.

My friend stuck it out as per rules of our agreement that whomever picked the book must finish it. What she told me of the plot after that did more to horrify rather than inspire.

In short : Save your cash, save your brain.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Slow, eerily similar to Twilight, March 21, 2010
This review is from: Need (Paperback)
When I saw this book, I was excited to read it with all of the good reviews raving about it in the front. When I opened the book I was a little more than disappointed.
First off, it's like a bad Twilight re-tell; through out the book I couldn't help but draw parallels to the worlds and plot lines.
Overall, I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone. It lacks a believable plot and never really engaged me into the story. The ending was unbelievably cheesy and horrible. If you want to read another twilight-wannabe, don't let me stop you.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Promising Beginning/Disapointing End, April 10, 2009
We all know a good book about a chapter in, or at least we know if the book is going to hold our interest. The more books you read the more apt you are to give a book a few more chapters if it doesn't flow just right. In Need's instance I knew two pages in I would finish it. It was not until a few chapters in that I noticed the choppy writing, small annoyances (i.e. Zara's name being repeated by every character in the book 500 times), thin story line, and Zara's immature point of view.

Was the book enjoyable, yes, but it left a little to be desired in the end. There were so many holes in the story I kept reading in hopes they would be closed. They weren't.

Zara the main character is a Junior in high school; her step-father has just passed away from a heart attack. Her mother sends her to live with her Father's mother in Maine. Her grandmother is a hearty good natured women who lives in the boondocks and works as a EMT. Zara is of course suffering from depression considering the fact that her father just passed. She feels as though her mother has sent her away because she couldn't be bothered after the death. She also is obsessed with Amnesty International and phobias. She likes to repeat phobias to herself when she is uncomfortable.

Zara meets a boy (Nick) at school who looks like a jock but acts nothing like one. He seems unnaturally concerned about her well fare and is pretty attentive. She also befriends a sweet bouncy girl names Issie, a boy named Dyven (Issie's bo), and an overachiever named Ian who also has eyes for her.

Zara keeps noticing a tall shadow of a man in the woods who she believes to be stalking her, but the reality or strangeness of the fact is never actually addressed. In fact a lot of things are never really addressed properly.

It turns out that the small town that Zara has moved to is full of Pixies and Shape Shifters. Her mother knew this, because her mother grew up there. Yet, her mother decided to send her away to the strange town knowing all the while that the Pixies were dangerous blood hungry kidnappers and murders. Yes, that's correct, the pixies are not sweet little glitter dusting tinker bells. Instead the Pixies are large males, and beautiful females who live in the town and "glamour" their way into peoples lives.

There has been a string of kidnappings; young men gone missing. Supposedly the young men are being drained of blood by the pixies in the woods, they need to do this until the King of the Pixies finds his queen. The only protection from the crazed Pixies is iron or shape shifters.

Spoilers:

The twists in the story are easy to see coming. It turns out that Ian is a pixie who intends to steal Zara (who happens to be the illegitimate daughter of the pixie king) for himself. Her mother is also half pixie and the king wants her back. Her step-dad meanwhile who is deceased was a werewolf (shape-shifter) that used to protect her and her mother from the insane pixies. Zara's love interest (Nick) is also a werewolf and her grandmother is a tiger (shape-shifter). Dyven is a eagle (shape-shifter) - phew!

Its never explained why the Pixies need what they need (Zara), not fully. Its never really explained why Zara's mother thought it would be a good idea to send her unknowing and defenseless daughter back to Maine to be hunted by pixies either. To top it all off the King pixie seems to have a unhealthy perverted interest in his own daughter. I mean imagine your biological father calling your name from the forest repeating that he needs you, over and over again. Uh okay???

The end of this book is the worst part. The shape-shifters and Zara all band together and trapped the pixies in a house with iron rail way ties and silverwear tapped to the window, and thats it. I guess all those pixies, including Zara's real father are just left to rot.

This book is hard to rate. It was a fun read, but it was certainly not a great one. What the writer is really good at is giving you highly likable real charters that you care for. The grandmother and Nick for instance are the best parts of the book. Zara's strained relationship with her mother is realistic, and her undying love for her lost Step-father is palpable. I don't regret reading the book, I suppose I just thought I'd get more out of it in the beginning then I did in the end.
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Need
Need by Carrie Jones (Paperback - December 8, 2009)
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