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4.6 out of 5 stars
Obsidian (Lux)
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73 of 83 people found the following review helpful
on April 22, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
Originally on Fiction Freak

So here's what happened: I was browsing through another blog when I came across Obsidian. I wasn't so sure if I should buy it, so I checked out all the reviews I could find and with all the great reviews, I finally bought it. I was wary; usually 3/10 books I buy are absolutely horrible, but thankfully, Obsidian wasn't one of them!

Generally, I don't read sci-fi with aliens. I mean, come on! It'd just ruin sci-fi for me. After all, I never was a space person. But of course, with all the five-stars going around, I had to buy it. I'm so happy I did! I know I've said this for a few other novels, but Obsidian truly is a breath of fresh air. I bet no other author could make aliens sound so alluring like Miss Armentrout did! Usually, like many of us know, aliens just seem nerdy in fantasy books. No edge, danger, or much action. Obsidian was the opposite of all that, and I loved every moment of reading it!

Here's what happens: Katy moves to a tiny town where everyone knows everyone, so of course Katy feels just a tad nervous, Now imagine what happens when she find out that she lives next to sweet and bubbly Dee, but also gorgeous Daemon. Perfect life? She think so too until it turns out that Daemon is the perfect popular stereotype: gorgeous and a jerk. Cliche? Never. Sure, Katy felt attracted, but she truly hated him, something that stands out among all the "love at first sight" thing going on in the fictionworld.

Katy was a perfect heroine, strong and smart, but with her own insecurities. She wasn't a "total loser" like in some books or a "queen bee" either. She was...normal. And you know what else I loved about her? She had her own love of books, her own book blog even! Even memes like Waiting on Wednesday and In My Mailbox were mentioned. It was fun reading about a protagonist who not only readers can relate to, but even more so for bloggers!

I was ensnared within the first chapter and kept flipping through the pages, dying to know what was going to happen. Obsidian was a great read filled with romance, jealousy, danger, and sacrifice. It's honestly one of the most enticing sci-fi novel I've read!
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67 of 79 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2012
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
Déjà vu. That's what I felt when reading this book.

Let me tell you a story. Once upon a time, there was this girl who met this boy, and the boy was a gorgeous, but a jerk. She was kind of fascinated with him (because he was gorgeous, and also mysterious), but they didn't get along. One day, something happened that almost killed her, but the boy saved her, and he did it by doing something that should have been impossible. Turns out the boy's not human, and he has enemies. Now she'll be targeted by those enemies too.

Sound familiar? That's because not only is that the plot of Obsidian, it also perfectly describes Twilight, Die for Me (Revenants),Hush, Hush (Hush, Hush Saga), and probably other books I haven't read. It's not a bad plot, exactly, but I'm getting a little tired of reading the same thing in every YA paranormal romance.

I'm not a fan of the "human girl meets supernatural boy" aspect, either. Either both parties should have superpowers or neither should. The discrepancy makes it hard to have a healthy relationship.

I did like Katy a lot. It was fun (and a little surreal) to read about her book blog, and I loved that she didn't just sit back and let everything happen to her. I also appreciated that, instead of whining about moving to a small town where she knew absolutely no one, she was determined to make the best of it, which was a nice change from the all-too-frequent YA angst. I think Katy's character made this book actually stand out from the crowd I mentioned before.

Granted, the alien aspect of the story was different as well, but it really just seemed like the same setting as I Am Number Four (Lorien Legacies). And while the Luxen were pretty cool, I was not impressed by the Arum. Evil should never be explained by saying, "that's just the way their species is." Good and evil aren't about what we are, they're about what we choose, and eliminating that choice by making a whole group innately bad makes the story seem superficial and juvenile. I want stories to give me reasons for people to do the things they do, and "they're all like that" is terribly unsatisfying, unless it turns out that they're actually not and that's a major part of the story. (From what I've seen so far, that doesn't seem likely here, but I guess you never know.)

This book the plot of Twilight with the world of I Am Number Four. If you liked those, I am sure you will like this one. Personally, I found it fairly unoriginal, but I liked the writing and the characters enough that I will probably read the sequels, maybe.
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29 of 33 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
4.5 stars

Take some really hot, sizzling character chemistry, two stubborn love interests who know how to push each other's buttons, and add in some awesome out of this world characters and you've got the makings for one fabulously written story. Jennifer Armentrout never fails to make me fall head over heals in love with her writing and her characters. How could I not? Her sizzling character chemistry, well written characters, and action packed books always leaving wanting more. Obsidian definitely does all that and more.

Talk about a refreshing, Obsidian will give readers a whole new take on aliens. What Jennifer did with this story was absolutely awesome! You do not need to be a sci-fi fan to enjoy it. Believe me, there's plenty of sparks and snarky come backs flying back and forth between Kat and Daemon, that fans of romance will love it. I loved the whole "boy next door" thing that happens between Kat and Daemon. Who ever thought you could live next door to an extremely hot alien? Certainly not Kat, and boy did I love every moment of her getting to know Daemon. If you guys loved Jace in City of Bones, just wait till you meet Daemon.

As a new comer to a small town Kat's in for a eye opening experience when she moves next door and meets Daemon, becomes best friends with his sister Dee, whom I completely loved and inadvertently gets mixed up into their world. What I love about Kat is that girl not only holds her own, she can dish it right back to Daemon. She's a stubborn, independent, resilient, character who doesn't take crap from anyone, and she can hold her own in some of the fabulous action packed scenes. Plus she's snarky and I love that.

To match her fiery character is Daemon, who takes everything up a notch and completely ruffles Kat's feathers, to say the least. Shoot, if I was Kat he would have ruffled my feathers too. Being a the big TMI fan that I am, I'm going to go out on a limb and say if Daemon and Jace where to battle it out, it would be a close call on which character would win. They both have a way for getting under the main characters skin as well as the readers, and yet you can't help but loving them. Not to be out done by her brother, Daemon's fabulous sister Dee really surprised me with how big of a role she plays in the story. I completely adored her! She's such an awesome, down to earth girls, and she's completely opposite of her brother. She's a well written loyal best friend to Kat.

If you're looking for a book that includes hot, alien boys, plenty of sarcasm, sizzling chemistry (which leads to one hot little scene), the right amount of laugh out loud moments and is over all is one of those books you can't get enough of, then I'd recommend picking up Obsidian! I think YA fans are going to fall in love with Daemon & Kat. There is some mild language found through out the book and one well written sensual scene.
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62 of 75 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
First off, let me say hell yeah to the shout out to bloggers. I absolutely LOVE that the main character is a book blogger, and that its authentic. I haven't seen that in any other book, and it rocks.
The writing is awesome, as I've come to know from Half Blood, the first in Jennifer's other series (I also have a copy of Pure screaming at me to be read... I just seriously need to find more time to read, but with the three year old and the newborn, its not as often as I like, but I digress).
As most of you probably know, I am a character person. They make or break books for me, and Jennifer sure nailed it. I love Katy's voice and character, she was so easy to connect with and to be in her head. It was natural and flowed so well. She's kinda shy but she fights to overcome it, which I admire greatly. I love how bold she is with Daemon sometimes, and the way the way that she handles him... well, it couldn't be done any better. Her internal voice, especially the running commentary about his lack of wearing a shirt is great.
And oh hot Daemon. Who knew that aliens could be sexy. But he totally makes it work. He has the bad ass vibe, and he really is an ass sometimes. By about half way through, I understand why, but still. And I really think that the jerkiness is mostly because he wants to protect her and his sister. He doesn't want her to be drawn into a dangerous world. But does that excuse it? I appreciate how Katy questions it, and doesn't just let the attraction totally drive things. She doesn't let his sexy overpower what she wants and what she knows she deserves. And there really is some tender beneath the jerk, even though it isn't the easiest to see or remember when he's being a jerk. I really appreciate Jennifer's genius in writing his character where I can totally see the appeal, but then again, I don't want anything to do with him, then the next minute I wish I were the one kissing him, and then I am totally questioning it again the next.
And I don't want to spoil anything, but just let me say, sweet baby jesus--the lake scene. Yeah. That's all.
Dee is pretty amazing too. She is the sort of female character that I wish were one of my best friends. She is perceptive, talkative, and understanding.
As for pacing and that good stuff... I was never bored, and always wanting to know what would happen next, and yearning to be reading when life and other books that I had a short window of time to read got in the way of that that is Obsidian awesomeness.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon September 26, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
See more of my reviews sooner on The YA Kitten!

Jennifer L. Armentrout is like one of those inescapable, Internet-conquering memes.

In my circles, I can't click on an adorable cat picture or even scratch my own rear end without hearing someone praise Armentrout's novels to Tibet and back. The campaign her Lux series street team put on before the release of the second book Onyx seemed to involve every other YA blog I could find and everyone wanted to get their hands on the series--and her other series, the Covenant novels. Trusting some friends who gave the novel very positive reviews, I took the leap and read Obsidian.

Trusting those friends was not a good idea in my case.

Sometimes, Katy has a brain. When Daemon acts like a jerk, she calls him out on it and gets mad at at him the way other YA heroines might not. Awesome! Well, until she starts going on and on about how hot Daemon is and I beg her to shut up and focus. One can only stand the drool for so long before they feel like it's time to take a shower. Another thing that should be commended: their chemistry. Armentrout can write some intense chemistry between her characters that makes the few make-out scenes extra-hot.

And as Katy points out, Daemon likes to have his shirt off. In my head, I heard Mai Valentine say "Fanservice!" every time he was shirtless. Because that's what it is: fanservice.

This may not have been a good idea from the beginning. Fluffy romances, contemporary or paranormal or beyond, are not a good fit for me unless the characters falling in love are interesting, dynamic characters who can keep my interest based on their own merits. Romance alone isn't enough of a motivation for me to keep reading. Daemon and Katy are not anywhere near interesting enough to hold my attention, and reading the book became a chore all too quickly.

Once I came to the part where three straight chapters of infodump tell readers everything they need to know about Daemon and Dee's kind, it seemed like the end was in sight. Not a chance! I was only halfway there. This was one book I desperately wanted to make shut up, but my determination to finish this book and try to see this book though everyone else's eyes kept me going. It almost seemed to slow down even further after that point as if to torture me, but I'm paranoid that everything (even my own body!) is out to get me, so don't take that seriously.

The writing itself was rough and rather bland. There are a quite a few good one-liners highlighted on my Kindle, but there's no prose I could specifically highlight as pretty or even memorable. I don't want to say it and therefore will not, but it's derivative of one very popular YA paranormal novel. Not as derivative as other books I could name, but there is more than one parallel that can be drawn between the two books.

I have no plans to read Onyx. Though the prequel novella Shadows is in my possession too, I don't think I'll be reading that either. There are too many other books to read.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on February 13, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
There has always been something in me that has been hesitant about jumping on bandwagons. Part of me waited so long to start Obsidian because the back cover just didn't really excite me very much. I'm going through a dystopian phase right now, and I'm in love with plot-driven books that bend the mind and challenge pre-conceptions. Admittedly, that's not what Obsidian is about. And yet, I literally stayed up into the wee hours of the night to finish this one. I finished Obsidian in near one (long) sitting. And I finished Onyx (book 2) even quicker - but more on that later.

As far as plot lines go, Obsidian isn't going to blow your socks off. It's your basic girl moves to new town, finds out neighbors are aliens, falls for one of them, and has to fight the bad guys. There really aren't many plot twists, and big mysteries aren't going to keep you up late at night. However, what WILL keep you up and engrossed in this book, are the characters. I've never read two main characters who had a chemistry like Katy and Daemon, and I'm guessing this is what has also led such a cult-like book blogger following for this book.

At first, I really really did not like Daemon. He was a douche, as Katy would so often put it, but I enjoyed every second of their interactions. They were explosive and hilarious and awkward and some of the things that came out of Daemon's mouth had me laughing out loud. But again, many of things that he did and said to Katy also had me wanting to slap him up the back of the head for being such a jerk. Then a dozen pages later, he'd do something that totally had me swooning. This is a quote from Onyx actually (no spoilers here, no worries), but I wanted to include it here because it really describes the character of Daemon very well:

"Deadly and sweet - that was what Daemon was; two very different kinds of souls rested in him, fused together."

In the end, it is this give and take between Daemon and Katy that kept me glued to this book. There are secondary characters that shape the story and frame the relationship between these two, but really - if I'm totally honest with myself - we're all just in it for Daemon. I was incredibly satisfied with how Obsidian ended as well, I was so glad that Katy is not just caving in. Instead, she is making Daemon deal with the consequences of having been so cruel to her, and for once, I was glad she was making him work for it.

As soon as I finished Obsidian, I downloaded Onyx and settled in for another late night. I'd love to see some more plot development in the coming books in the series. If you take Daemon and Katy, and add some plot twists and something that keeps me on the edge of my seat, this could easily morph into a 5-star series for me.
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27 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on December 16, 2012
Format: Paperback
Too much conversation, chit-chat and blah blah blah and no action. I abandoned the book half way through when Kat finds out that her friends (and probably half of the town? are aliens.

"Do you hate me now" - Alien friend Dee asks Kat.
" No! Why would I? You are an alien and that's way too cool!"
Seriously people? If you just discover your neighbors are alien you won't freak out... just a little bit?

So, Kat moves to this small town God knows where and makes friend with Dee, her neighbor who acts as if she has never seen humans before and Kat is the first doll she has to play with. Obviously, gorgeous Daemon and Dee's brother doesn't like Kat for no other reason than it has to be this way so they can fall in love. But Kat seems to wear some type of alien repellent because the other aliens, as soon as they see her, forbid Dee to be friends with her "because she is not like us," they say right in front of Kat.

Weird, you'd be a little more careful when referring to your not-human-condition, no?

Anyways, a couple of strange things lead Kat to suspect she doesn't know exactly what until one day Daemon (almost Twilight-like) saves her of being hit. In order to save Kat's life he had to use hi alien's abilities and reveal himself to Kat.

The entire book is pretty dull and the only thing that is obvious is that Daemon doesn't like Kat regardless finding her beautiful. Kat doesn't like Daemon either because he makes fun of her and has a hard time keeping her eyes away off his perfect body.

My favorite cliche in this book is when Daemon tells Kat that she is beautiful and she doesn't believe him... "really? I'm beautiful?"

Errr... noooo! A skinny girl with curves in all the right places, long curly hair and big eyes is not beautiful. Please! Get real. When are they going to write real freaking characters?

What I liked: Kat keeps a review blog (even if just for the sake of appealing to us bloggers :-) ).
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 1, 2012
Format: Paperback
Obsidian, the first book in Jennifer L Armentrout's new Lux series, introduces us to Katy; the lead character was someone I immediately adored. Katy is intelligent, self-aware, and feisty, when provoked. She's also a book worm and a book blogger, so for me, reading this book and seeing terms like "Waiting on Wednesday" and "In My Mailbox" dotting the pages was a real thrill. I was drawn to Katy right off the bat, for her good nature and that level below her surface that, once scratched, reveals a character with a ton of potential and a girl after my own heart. Jennifer did a fantastic job of creating a lead female who is both identifiable and at times, unpredictable.

The plot of Obsidian moved along fairly well. There were a few moments where, for me, the pacing felt off, but for the most part I read this book always wishing I could read it a bit faster, because I had to know what happened next. I've read a great deal more fantasy than sci-fi, so discovering this book was a treat for me. I love the whole idea behind the Luxen, as well as how Katy takes the revelation that her neighbors are aliens in stride. She isn't squeamish; nor is she rushing to get involved in their business - how she ends up involved is equal parts frightening, amusing, promising, and sexy all at once.

I can't review Obsidian without mentioning Daemon. Oh, Daemon. He is THAT character, that I apparently love to fall for - the bad boy with a secret, good heart. Snarky on the surface, but sink deeper and you'll discover the boy who will do anything to keep his family safe, and who, when he does care about others, cares so much, but struggles to admit he does. I fell pretty hard for him, although there were times when I wanted to slap him. I feel like although Jennifer Armentrout gave us an awesome character in Daemon, and although yes, the sparks were off the charts between Daemon and Katy, that at times it was a bit much. If there was one thing I'd have craved more of between them, it was more slow-burning scenes, and less snark. (Though that was highly amusing, don't get me wrong.) However for the most part, when it comes to Daemon and Katy, I am STILL fanning myself.

I really love Jennifer's writing style, too. She captures the teen voice very well, but more than that, her characters are all people you can relate to, the type of girl or guys we've all known - some we were friends with, broke up with, or loved to hate. Bravo to Jennifer for being able to reach out and not only tell a story, but draw me in and make me care about the characters I'm reading about.

My only other two complaints (and they're teeny tiny!) is that I wish the book had been longer, so I could have had more time with these characters, and that I wanted to know more about some of the secondary characters. There were one or two who I hope in the sequel, ONYX, we get to see more of, since they didn't have very many redeeming qualities. Overall, I am VERY excited for ONYX, and to give y'all a peek at the cover below! So if you don't have Obsidian yet...run, don't walk to go snag a copy, because it is steamy, heart-pounding, and unforgettable.

Originally posted at Once Upon a Prologue
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on April 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
I'm not sure how she did it, but somehow Jennifer L. Armentrout makes a novel built on top of the themes of many other novels seem original.
It's hard not to compare Obsidian to I Am Number Four (with a good dose of Twilight thrown in there)- aliens come to Earth after their planet is destroyed, followed by other mean aliens who want to kill them...extraordinary guy who usually only hangs out with his own kind falls for plain girl new to town. While the writing may be structurally better in I Am Number Four, Jennifer's aptitude for storytelling makes up for any lack in her technical abilities. In fact, that lack just may have made the story even better - it really felt like I was reading the story from a teenager's viewpoint. The crude and vulgar way Kat describes things are exactly how most teenagers I know would too.(I'm not sure I've ever seen the word "douchebag" written so often in a book!) I LOVED the tension she creates between Katy and Daemon -- it was so refreshing to not have the two heroes fall instantly in love, and instead be at each other's throats the majority of the book. Although it was extremely frustrating to watch Daemon go from hot to cold every few pages and act like a jerk most of the time- it gave weight to how Katy must have been feeling during those moments. Speaking of Katy, even though she made some idiotic decisions a few times, how could you not love her for being so brave and rescuing the guy more than once in the book! Oh, and one last thing...the decision to make Katy a book blogger? Well played, Ms. Armentrout, well played :)
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
Katy Swartz is forced to leave her life behind when her mother decides to move to West Virginia to start over. Having already lost her father, leaving her home, her friends and her school just before senior year isn't easy.

When it turns out her new neighbors are aliens, Katy can almost take that in stride. What she can't take is Daemon's hot, cold and colder attitude toward her. Tired of being a pushover, she is determined to stand her ground and fight back.

Which proves to be more difficult than she would have imagined. Because as much as she can't stand Daemon, she is drawn to him. With every insult, cruel remark or show of arrogance, her anger grows, but so does her attraction to him.

But there are rules. And there are risks involved with getting too close. And if she can't stay away from Daemon or keep him away from her, then it won't be only her, but Daemon and his entire family, that will be in danger.

***

Obsidian is the electrifying, action-packed and tension-filled first book in the new Lux trilogy by author Jennifer L. Armentrout.

The immediate, intense and sizzling chemistry between the main character Katy and her next door neighbor Daemon will instantly captivate readers and pull them into this world of rivals, danger and forbidden attraction, that won't let go.

In this story of aliens - both good and bad, beautiful and ugly - it is the thrill of danger and the excitement of the unknown that keep these two characters alternately drawn to and repelled by one another.

And it is this magnetic push-pull that will keep readers on edge, as they discover just who Daemon really is, just how much trouble Katy is really in and what lengths they'll have to go to keep everyone safe.

Author Jennifer Armentrout has managed to write a book about aliens that weaves together elements of science fiction, drama, action and romance in a way that is enticing and incredibly appealing to readers beyond those simply lured in by the science fiction aspect.

Right from the start, the tension between these two characters builds and continues to build until they and the reader are ready to explode, making this one electrically-charged and immensely entertaining story that is unputdownable.

As this is a novel aimed at a more mature young adult audience, there is a bit more violence, language and sexual content than is typical in a young adult story, but nothing that feels over the top, out of character or unnecessary to the story.

Obsidian is a deliciously tormenting, absolutely explosive must read with an ending that will leave readers begging for the sequel.
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