Chosen by Kiersten White
Nina continues to learn how to use her slayer powers against enemies old and new in this second novel in the New York Times bestselling series from Kiersten White, set in the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Now that Nina has turned the Watcher’s Castle into a utopia for hurt and lonely demons, she’s still waiting for the utopia part to kick in. With her sister Artemis gone and only a few people remaining at the castle—including her still-distant mother—Nina has her hands full. Plus, though she gained back her Slayer powers from Leo, they’re not feeling quite right after being held by the seriously evil succubus Eve, a.k.a. fake Watcher’s Council member and Leo’s mom.
And while Nina is dealing with the darkness inside, there’s also a new threat on the outside, portended by an odd triangle symbol that seems to be popping up everywhere, in connection with Sean’s demon drug ring as well as someone a bit closer to home. Because one near-apocalypse just isn’t enough, right?
The darkness always finds you. And once again, it’s coming for the Slayer.
Hello, book friends! It has been a while since I’ve popped over on the blog to share some of my thoughts on books. Reason behind that is during the month of December my family was sick with the flu and pneumonia for pretty much the entire month, and that just killed my whole wanting to read or do much of anything mood. I was stuck in a slump, but I have since recovered thanks to the New Year lighting a fire under me. I decided to put aside the book I was slowly making my way through for something that I knew was going to be fun. I mean when it’s a New Year you want to set the tone with something fresh and exciting, so it was goodbye germs and hello wooden stakes!
I started 2020 off with Slayer by Kiersten White. The book reminded me a lot of another book I read by Kiersten White this past Fall, The Guinevere Deception. Both books are slow to get into because there is so much set-up, and that is totally not a bad thing. I needed that set-up with both books because in the case of The Guinevere Deception, I didn’t know much about King Arthur and his knights, and as shocking as it is for someone who was a preteen in the 90s to have never seen Buffy…I have never seen Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I had no idea what a watcher was and how it was different from being a slayer, so it was nice to really get a firm grasp on how it all works. In the end I enjoyed the book. It was predictable and a tad angsty with all the “my mom doesn’t love me as much as my sister” and “nobody gets me” stuff, but I was right that it was a fun read, and really that’s what counts the most in my world!
Now, let’s talk about the next book, Chosen. I enjoyed this book way more than Slayer, and I think it’s because there was a much clearer theme to this book, plus we got to see more and even read from Artemis’s perspective. Really I would go so far as to say that this story is Artemis’s and not Nina’s. Both sisters are struggling emotionally, but while Nina came to terms with herself in the first book-Artemis is the one in Chosen that is really having a rough time accepting the fact that Nina doesn’t need her anymore, that she’s not the strongest anymore, she’s not her mother’s chosen daughter anymore. She has left the watchers, and basically everything has changed. So, Chosen is about Artemis trying to find her way to prove to the watchers and to her sister that she is still important and should be valued equally if not more than Nina, but in the process she keeps mucking things up and continually hurts those she loves.
Another aspect to this book that I really loved was the making of the castle into “Sanctuary”, a place where watchers, slayers, and demons could all live peacefully together. It really reminded me of Halloweentown High to the point that I kept picturing Nina as Marnie! Another movie/show that kept popping into my mind was Monster High. My daughter was obsessed with those movies and dolls a few years ago, and while the dolls were kind of creepy looking, I didn’t mind because the whole show was about acceptance, that no matter what type of monster you were, you were welcome at Monster High. The same applies to Chosen and the Sanctuary Nina started. Really, acceptance is what I felt was the biggest overall concept of the whole book. Because in the end, Artemis finds self-acceptance, and Nina was successful in accepting who she was (extra dose of demon and all), and other slayers, watchers, and demons, maybe even some gods sprinkled in, are accepted at the castle.
We’re not alone in the dark. Not as Slayers, not as sisters, not as friends. Not when we hold the people we love as close as we can.Kiersten White, Chosen