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Rampant: 11/25/11

cover art

When I first met Pam of Bookalicious, she was excited about Rampant by Diana Peterfreund. She hadn't started reading it yet but was eager to start. So I added it to my wishlist and it bubbled to the top, two years later.

Astrid ends up shipped off to Italy after she's attacked by the smallest species of killer unicorns. Think of a goat sized, blood thirsty beast with a poisonous horn. The only problem is, Astrid doesn't want to go to Italy. Her mother is the classic stage mother, except here she's fighting unicorns vicariously.

The set up to Rampant is an interesting one. What if the remembered virgin / unicorn connection is tied to Artemis's hunters. What if only virgins can see and kill unicorns? And what if they have to be of certain blood lines? It's an intriguing idea but it never quite plays out as I had hoped it would.

The character building, world building and plot all come together in a jumble. First there is Astrid's on again / off again romance with Giovanni. Then there is Astrid's cousin Phil who Astrid can't decide if she's best friends with or arch enemies with. Finally there are the unicorns themselves which come in so many different varieties and are constantly attacking the school that it's damn near impossible for the plot to progress at all.

In the end I found Astrid too dull of a character to keep me interested in this jumbled plot. It started out strong but it didn't keep my attention.

Three stars.

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