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Masque of the Red Death Hardcover – Deckle Edge, April 24, 2012
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“Luscious, sultry and lingeringly tragic, this story has my heart. I can’t stop thinking about this tale of a broken world held together by corsets and clock gears. Araby’s voice stays with me even now, making me wary of the air I breathe.” (Lauren Destefano, author of WITHER)
“Bethany Griffin’s Masque of the Red Death is gorgeous, compelling, and achingly romantic.” (Suzanne Young, author of A NEED SO BEAUTIFUL)
About the Author
Bethany Griffin is the author of Masque of the Red Death. She is a high school English teacher who prides herself on attracting creative misfits to elective classes like Young Adult Literature, Creative Writing, and Speculative Literature. She lives with her family in Kentucky.
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Why am I telling you how reluctant I was to read Masque of the Red Death? So that you don't make the same mistake I did. You need to get this book, sit down, and just read. You'll thank me for it later.
Araby is living a guilty life. Alive, but not really living. At first, I was confused as to why she was the one that got involved with everything happening in the book. She isn't the bravest or the strongest or the smartest character I've ever read. She didn't have that special something. But then I realized that was why she was involved. Because she was normal. She was in the right place at the right time and had something necessary. Her importance isn't apparent at first. But as you read, you'll discover that despite all her faults, there's a reason people need her like they do.
The love triangle. One of the things I dread the most on Young Adult novels. They usually annoy me because they become more important than everything else in the novel, instead of acting as a tool to help build the strength of the story. Not in Masque of the Red Death. Yes it's there, but it doesn't take over the story. Neither guy is completely perfect and I question both their motives. I'm not sure I trust either one, but I like that. It adds more mystery to the novel and more confusion.
Masque of the Red Death is a dark, edgy book that draws you in and won't let go. It wraps around your mind until you can't resist and then it seeps into your blood, making sure to bring you right into the story. It's a fantastic read and I can't wait for the next book.
At the beginning of Masque of the Red Death, we see a sad and lonely Araby Worth who blames herself for her twin brother Finn's death. She goes out clubbing with her friend April and uses drugs and alcohol to try to numb the pain and the guilt she feels over his death.
When Araby gets contacted about joining a rebellion, she jumps at the chance. She would like nothing better than to change the way things are. But by doing what she is asked not only will she be betraying her father but she also puts her family in danger.
Even though this book isn't about love or romance we do see a little bit of a love triangle between Araby, Will and Elliott. I have to say that I was expecting one of them to betray her but I never expected it to be who it was.
Ms. Griffin doesn't warm you up to the dark and ominous world that is Masque of the Red Death, but instead she throws you right into the action in the first chapter. Although most of this book revolved around surviving a contagion called the Weeping Sickness, it was never explained how the Weeping Sickness came about or what all it involved and the Red Death doesn't make an appearance until the last part of the book. I would have loved to learn more about the plagues and more about this world that Araby lives in and hopefully we will in the next book.
"Just because you don't want to see something doesn't mean that it will go away. Do you think inhumanity doesn't exist if you pretend not to see it? Or maybe get too drunk to understand? We've forgotten the things that make life worthwhile."
There are still some flaws with Masque of the Red Death that I want to point out. Like I said, the writing style keeps that vague approach all the way through the book. I feel like I'm being told only the basic details instead of shown things. There are some pretty intense action scenes towards the end, and it's easy to get confused on what's going on, because the minimum is described for the reader. It got on my nerves a bit. I would have loved more details about certain things and actions.
There is a sort-of love triangle, but it isn't unbearable in any sense. It actually becomes a little twisted and unconventional. I feel like there is a definite role reversal with the love interests.
I was surprised at how many twists this book had. Being based of the original Poe short story, I just sort of assumed I would know what was going on, and where Griffin's version would take me. That was my bad, and I won't underestimate the second installment.
As much as I like Poe's original Masque of the Red Death, most of it hasn't come into play yet. Aside from Prospero, his secluded castle, and the Red Death ravaging the city, not much else is mentioned. I assume Prospero's party will come into play in Dance of the Red Death since there was only a small line that the party is coming at the end of Griffin's version.
Anyway, I can't wait to read the second book Dance of the Red Death and see how Griffin handles the masked ball. I love the creativity she has applied to such a popular Poe short story. It could have been hit or miss, but Griffin's Masque of the Red Death is definitely a hit. I think it's able to thrill both Poe aficionados and newcomers alike.
Most recent customer reviews
Why did I give it 2 stars? because I got through the book. So, We’ve all read the Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe, or at least most of...Read more