Author: Cynthia Leitich Smith
Quincie Morris has never felt more alone. Her parents are dead, and her hybrid-werewolf first love is threatening to embark on a rite of passage that will separate them forever. Then, as she and her uncle are about to unveil their hot vampire-themed restaurant, a brutal murder leaves them scrambling for a chef. Can Quincie transform their new hire into a culinary Dark Lord before opening night? Can he wow the crowd in his fake fangs, cheap cape, and red contact lenses — or is there more to this earnest face than meets the eye? As human and preternatural forces clash, a deadly love triangle forms, and the line between predator and prey begins to blur. Who’s playing whom? And how long can Quincie play along before she loses everything?
So finally this book wooed me. Tantalize is a very very interesting book. But when I say interesting, it doesn't mean that it was perfect. In fact, the characters are far, far, far from perfect but surprisingly, the whole story really hooked me up.
It's a story of 17-year-old Quincie (I love the name) has a lot of things to think of. She's in her senior year, trying so hard to catch-up with school, have a crush with her best friend, Kieren who apparently a half-werewolf and the re-opening of her family's restaurant after her parents' recent death. Unfortunately, just days before opening, Quincie's long-time family friend and head chef, Vaggio, is murdered in the restaurant kitchen, brutally. This violent event begins a series that change her life forever. And this occasions blames a were-people, or to be exact, a werewolf. Were-people (possum, cats, wolf, anything can be a were too in this world), vampires and humans mix and together in a community. Cool. I thought it would be even curiouser when they blamed a werewolf instead of vampires. And of course, Quincie cannot trust Kieren anymore. And I even thought, "why Kieren is the bad guy? I want him to be the hero!"
**Then come the best part. The werewolf is actually the hero here. And not vampires! Finally. But, the interesting part doesn't stop there. Because it's going to be a vampire who fall in love with a werewolf. Awww.. I love the parts of Quincie and Kieren in this book. I kind of like that. A werewolf and a vampire really remind me of the Underworld movie.**
However, I have to admit that it's not a page turner book for about the first 50 pages. The problems of re-opening the family restaurant with a vampire theme really quite off the hook. But, it kind of worked a little with the plot she created. When there's a major plot twist toward the end of the book that I somehow completely missed, too, so I found the book to be full of surprises.
I enjoyed the short chapters with titles of each as they really helped move along the pace of the book also added a lot of interest. However, I was very disappointed in the abrupt and unsatisfying ending. Another cliffhanger. It reminded me very much of the "resolution" to Rachel Caine "Glass Housess" I've read last week. To put it simply, there isn't much of one. As readers, I were left hanging to hope that Smith ties up some of the obvious loose ends in her subsequent books. Urghhh..I felt this first portion of the story could have been a little more developed. But, it's OK I guess.
Overall, Tantalize is a tantalizing read. And luckily it did leave me wanting a little more. I can't wait for the next two books of the trilogy. I know the #2 is Eternal but I don't know when is the #3 installment. I don't even know the title. *LOL*
Have you heard anything about the trilogy? Hoping we could share some. =)