Friday, February 10, 2012

On Carriers: A Review of Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon

I'm going to be honest right from the start: I hate this book. Quite a bit. And while I don't usually write ranting reviews, sometimes one is called for...I'm trying not to go over board. But I really hate this book.

First off, whats the plot? Bella Megan is a teenage girl who lives with her single father, Charlie Caleb. The two have just moved to Forks Kinsale. Megan makes instant, close friendships on her first day of school, despite having a fairly bland personality. More importantly, she finds herself helplessly drawn to Edward Adam, a mysterious boy from a mysterious family. There are a lot of rumors surrounding Adam's family, rumors that suggest he's a vampire werewolf magic user. Adam seems to have influence over water. His sister, Alice Aine has earth powers and can sense the future, but not at any point where it becomes useful. Their older brother, Rian, mostly broods and smolders. Anyway, it seems that Megan is their missing link--the final member in their magic team, which is destined to complete the alignment and bring balance to...something. But first, Megan has to accept her power, and a destiny that might prevent her from being with Adam romantically.

Positive Comments:

The use of magic approached interesting on one or two occasions. And I like that this book was set in Ireland. And...the cover is nice.

Critical Comments:

In case I didn't make it clear above, this book has very strong parallels to Twilight. And, remember, I skimmed through Twilight only once a few years ago, and I've seen the movie twice, so I'm far from an expert, but even I could not stop spotting the similarities. This strikes me as lazy and unoriginal. Though, I guess if you are a big Twilight fan this would probably be a plus for you.

Megan is unlikeable. She's the blank slate, average girl character that author's write because they want every reader to be able to relate to her directly. I don't like that trope, because I think it makes the characters boring. But that's not even the worst of it. As described above, Megan has powers that she needs to evoke, an action that by all accounts would be good for the whole world. The catch is, if she evokes them, she might not get to be with Adam romantically. She decides she doesn't want her powers, because she can't bear not being with Adam. She's willing to sacrifice the power that is hers by right, thereby potentially endangering or screwing over the world, all so that she can keep her boyfriend. Our heroine, ladies and gentlemen!

Now, I could have gotten in Megan's corner about the whole "Love is more important than anything" idea, if I actually believed for one second that Adam and Megan were in love. But I just didn't buy it. It's insta-love, which is irritating enough by itself. There's no relationship development. There's no real "meet cute" or "getting to know each other" phase. There's no chemistry. The author tells us they're in love, but fails utterly at actually showing us.

This brings me to my final complaint, which is all of the telling and info-dumping that goes on in this book. The exposition goes on and on. The action is sparse and uncreative. The author feeds us all of the world building in character dialogue, instead of finding an exciting way of showing us the world. It's very bland and very boring.


I'd recommend this book to those who really love Twilight and want more of the same, and those who like the insta-love trope. Personally, I despised this book. 1 star.

Buy Carrier of the Mark from Amazon


  1. I agree with this. I was SO excited for Carrier, but I ended up pretty disappointed since most of the conversations seemed stilted and incredibly staged, and I got really bored while reading, which doesn't happen often. In fact, I felt next to nothing while I was reading this, which explains why I completely forgot Aine's name by the time I needed to write the review (2 days later).

    Great review!

    1. Oh yes, the dialogue is supper forced. I only hope I'll forget about it all in two days! LOL

  2. Urgh! I've totally been put off this book not only because of the similarities to Twilight and the poor character development but because the author seems to be a bit of a bad apple as well. There's so much stuff going on over at Goodreads about her losing the plot (sorry about the pun) at a reviewer who didn't like her book. All in all, I'd only read this one if I were desperate for some self affirmation that no matter how bad anything I write is, stuff like this manages to get published.

    1. Seriously, I would not waste my time on this one is I were you. It's painfully aweful.

  3. I've read some very mixed reviews about this book and after seeing how the author behaves if she gets a bad review then I really don't think I'll be bothering with this one.

    1. Honestly, I hadn't seen any of the author's bad behavior, or I might not have read it either. It's a shame when authors decide lash out because of a couple reader opinions.

  4. "It's a nice cover..."

    LOL That's the blogging equivalent to, "She has a really great personality..." isn't it?

    Not a book I've had any interest in reading, but I must say I enjoyed your review tremendously. :)


Thoughtful comments are appreciated! I always respond to them, and I usually return the favor! Happy reading!

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