Nora should have known her life was far from perfect. Despite starting a relationship with her guardian angel, Patch (who, title aside, can be described as anything but angelic), and surviving an attempt on her life, things are not looking up. Patch is starting to pull away, and Nora can't figure out if it's for her best interest or if his interest has shifted to her arch-enemy Marcie Millar. Not to mention that Nora is haunted by images of her father and she becomes obsessed with finding out what really happened to him that night he left for Portland and never came home.
The farther Nora delves into the mystery of her father's death, the more she comes to question if her Nephilim blood line has something to do with it as well as why she seems to be in danger more than the average girl. Since Patch isn't answering her questions and seems to be standing in her way, she has to start finding the answers on her own. Relying too heavily on the fact that she has a guardian angel puts Nora at risk again and again. But can she really count on Patch, or is he hiding secrets darker than she can even imagine?
Crescendo is the thrilling follow-up to Becca Fitzpatrick's New York Times Bestselling debut Hush, Hush.
Truthfully, I have rather mixed feelings about Crescendo. Back when Hush, Hush came out, there were some rather dividing opinions on it - avid supporters and avid dislikers (whose main offense came from the anti-feminist actions of Nora). Personally, I thought Hush, Hush was a pretty enjoyable read (see review).
On the whole, Crescendo is still an enjoyable read. Fitzpatrick's writing and the particular font of the novel create a magnetic atmosphere that draws the reader in. Personally, I found the climax of this novel better than its predecessor. The twist at the end was a brilliant touch, nicely executed and a pleasantly chilling surprise. Basically, the ending of the novel was great fun to read.
Alas, it took getting to the end of the novel to reach the good stuff. The first couple hundred pages were... shall we say, frustrating? In Hush, Hush, Nora was a little annoying, but still in an endearing way. In Crescendo, she was just annoying. The things she did, the words she said, the thoughts she thought... it was all very damsel-in-distress and irrational and basically very PMS. Those were not the words and actions of a person who has aspirations to attend one of the best colleges in the States. And what happened to the whole summer school plot line? It kind of just disappeared. In short, characterization - not just of Nora, but supporting characters as well - detracted from the credibility of the novel.
So while the climax and plot twists improved in this sophomore novel, characterization seems to have gone the opposite way, unfortunately.
Nevertheless, Crescendo has magnetic prose and can still be an enjoyable read and will no doubt find an attentive, adoring audience.
The winner of Hush, Hush and Crescendo was Carrie from In the Hammock. Congratulations!