Review: Crow Moon by Anna McKerrow

Danny is a fun-loving 16-year-old looking for a father figure and falling in love with a different girl every day. He certainly doesn't want to follow in his mum's witchy footsteps.

Just as his community is being threatened by gangs intent on finding a lucrative power source to sell to the world, Danny discovers he is stunningly powerful. And when he falls for Saba, a gorgeous but capricious girl sorceress, he thinks maybe the witch thing might not be such a bad idea...

But what cost will Danny pay as, with his community on the brink of war, he finds that love and sorcery are more dangerous than he ever imagined?

Um . . . A couple of my favourite bloggers are really big fans of this book.

*shivers nervously*

It wasn't bad, exactly. Many parts - the intreguing premise of a post-apocolyptic fuel crisis; the vivid setting that was the Greenworld, and certain secondary characters *cough* Melz *cough* - were compelling enough to keep me interested, and I did finish.

But it was really hard to wade through the perspective of a main character I really, really didn't agree with.

I must admit that this was almost solely because of his attitude towards girls. The Goodreads blurb says he's "falling in love with a new one every day", which I'm not sure I'd have a problem with if they knew what short-term relationships they were getting into, but they absolutely don't. First, there was Sadie, the childhood friend who was effectively his girlfriend; he pretty much just forgot about her when he left to train in witchiness. And didn't bother actually telling her they'd broken up.

Then there was Saba (I'm not sure if I have a valid reason to be suspicious of her or am just being judgy). In my opinion, their entire relationship was just me screaming "no, don't", "this is not going to end well" and "are you even listening to me?", but I won't go through all the other complicated details because a) the book wasn't utterly terrible, and I don't want this to turn into a rant, and b) if it does sound like your sort of thing, it would be awful of me to spoiler.

Now! Shall we talk about some nice things?

Firstly, the entire setting and premise of this book was unique and really well-imagined: it worked because the idea of a fuel crisis is quite an immediate danger to today's society, and the Greenworld's (a sort of huge hippy commune who live self-sufficiently and without power) formation seemed like a perfectly logical reaction to that. It's refreshing to see a sort of dystopia that properly does have its heart in the right place, and I can't help but wonder if even the darkest societies - Panem, home of The Hunger Games, The Society from Matched, or even Divergent's twisted Chicago - started out like this. I also really enjoyed page 185.

I like a lot of the secondary characters, too. If only Omar could have been around for a younger Danny as a father figure, because he was just the right kind of rough around the edges. Lorwenna was fabulously scary, I loved the portrayal of Danny's Mum, Zia (who he was actually good to, so silver linings) slowly losing her influence, and Melz, a shy, eyeliner-wearing sharpshooter, was utterly glorious. I might read the sequel just to make sure she's okay.

Danny had a nicely realistic relationship with his sister, too. There were good elements. I just wish my arguments with him hadn't existed, because then I could have given these elements a better star rating.
In the comments: Do you agree with me about this book? Or are you here to stop me being so judgemental about Danny? Or have I actually convinced you to give this book a try?
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