Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Review: Velveteen by Daniel Marks

Title: Velveteen
Author: Daniel Marks
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 9, 2012


Velveteen Monroe is dead. At 16, she was kidnapped and murdered by a madman named Bonesaw. But that's not the problem.

The problem is she landed in purgatory. And while it's not a fiery inferno, it's certainly no heaven. It's gray, ashen, and crumbling more and more by the day, and everyone has a job to do. Which doesn't leave Velveteen much time to do anything about what's really on her mind.


Velveteen aches to deliver the bloody punishment her killer deserves. And she's figured out just how to do it. She'll haunt him for the rest of his days.
It'll be brutal . . . and awesome.

But crossing the divide between the living and the dead has devastating consequences. Velveteen's obsessive haunting cracks the foundations of purgatory and jeopardizes her very soul. A risk she's willing to take—except fate has just given her reason to stick around: an unreasonably hot and completely off-limits coworker.

Velveteen can't help herself when it comes to breaking rules . . . or getting revenge. And she just might be angry enough to take everyone down with her.

My Thoughts:

I really wanted to love this book! The cover: breathtaking. The premise: so intriguing. But I couldn't quiet bring myself to love it. I liked it, but I didn't love it. Velveteen has a pretty sweet job in purgatory and she still finds time to haunt her killer. Actually, the parts with Velvet and Bonesaw were my favourites from the book. I love the idea of a murdered teenage girl trying to get even with her killer.

There was a lot of world-building necessary for this one, since Marks constructed an entire society of purgatory. Overall, I thought the world-building was well done, but occasionally I got a bit confused when certain aspects were touched upon, but then never revisited (such as the divining needles). Also, some of the secondary characters were very odd. Something makes me a bit uncomfortable about a 12-year-old addict

Velveteen prides herself on being a badass, which I always appreciate in my heroines. However, in Velvet's case, she tried too hard and generally came off mean and bitchy. Now, I'm not claiming to be an expert in badass, but I always appreciate characters who 'are tough' more than characters who 'act tough.' Velveteen's commitment to repress any and all feelings drove me a bit nuts. Sure she had more than her fair share of trauma, but it made me frustrated at her as a character.

On to the romance. Nick was confident and smooth, but at the same time comforting and vulnerable. Basically, he had the whole package of a YA love interest, not to mention that he's a saint for putting up with all Velvet's crap. My goodness that girl gives a lot of mixed signals!

The pacing of this book was weird for me. It felt like sometimes the author would focus solely on one aspect of the book (ie: romance, Bonesaw, Velvet's job in purgatory) and forget all about everything else for a few chapters. I would have really preferred it if the aspects were mixed together a bit more throughout. At one point I was so impatient for the romance to get out of the way so I could have more Bonesaw action! Morbid? Maybe.

Overall, Velveteen is a good read, but it fell a bit short of being great for me. It's still worth a try if you like somewhat morbid ghost stories, but it didn't quite make my recommendation list.

On the Cover:

I absolutely love this cover. Honestly wouldn't change a thing!

Rating: 3 Hearts

Source: I received a review copy from the publisher via Netgalley.

Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | The Book Depository

Find the Author: Goodreads | Website | Twitter

Don't Just Take My Word For It:
Books With Bite | The Bookish Brunette | Smexy Books


  1. Hmmm, based on the description alone, and then especially because of your thoughts, I don't think this is a book for me. It sounds like Velvet would really, really irritate me, and that's never a good thing coming from a main character.

  2. I do love the cover for this book! But, even though I like ghost stories, I'm not sure if I'd like this one.

    Great review, Megan!