It's Twilight if Bella were a boy and Edward moved down South instead of Bella moving up North.
No, you don't get a better plot than that. Because really, take any Young Adult book published in the last 10 years, and that's this book's plot, characters, setting, and story.
Sure, some people are like, "But this is DIFFERENT! The protagonist is a BOY! And it's got SOUTHERN FLAVOR."
But you know what? A duck is still a duck if you put it in a chicken suit and sit it out on your back porch. It doesn't matter if it's dressed like a chicken, IT'S A DUCK.
DNF at 36% or somewhere in October (because Chapters are so yesterday).
Let's talk about cliches and tropes for a moment. Sometimes, they can be useful - a quick descriptor for people, a typical plot or character for a story (like the down and out Private Detective or the Rebellious Emo Teen). Most of the time (99% of the time, to be precise), though, cliches suck. They suck, because they are boring, they are overdone, and they have no nuance.
This book is loaded with Cliches.
Wheel 'O Cliches:
+ MC reads
+ MC reads CLASSICS and LOVES THEM OH SO MUCH
+ MC's favorite book just HAPPENS to be the book discussed in English class
+ English class
+ MC has quirky "friend", whom he uses and doesn't do anything else with
+ MC wants "more"
+ Absentee/dead parents (Quadruple points because BOTH the MC and the LI have them!)
+ No/incompetent adult figures
+ New kid/Love Interest (LI) at school - LOVE INTEREST ALERT!
+ New kid/LI is WEIRD but effing gorgeous too
+ LI is UNIQUE! and SPESHUL! because she wears ripped up skirts with Converse Chucks
+ No one will f#$%ing say what the f#$% is going on
+ Slut-shaming!! Because if you wear a black bra and a short skirt, you are TOTALLY A SLUT!
+ Bitchy cheerleaders
+ HIGH SCHOOL DWAMA
+ Heavy handed allusions to classic literature
+ MC and LI are mopey, emo teens who are all like, "BUT NO ONE UNDERSTANDS MY PAYNE!!!"
+ EMO POETRY
+ Visions/dreams of love interest wherein MC falls in love BEFORE HE'S MET THE LI
+ Falling in lust before meeting/at first sight
+ All conversations center around Love Interest
+ Potentially racist (Amma sounds like she's supposed to be a Mammy black stereotype)
+ People play ring-around-the-rosie with information until about 1/4 of the way through the book
+ Neither the MC nor the LI can just ask, "Hey, you wanna date?"
+ Neither the MC nor the LI have any sort of real sex drive. They are perfectly content with blushing and giggling about how Deep and Unique the other person is.
Good God, even *I* didn't realize how bad this was in the cliche department until I started to type it out! Look at that list! JUST LOOK AT IT! It's enormous! And that's only in the 36% I could stomach!
The two highlights of this book were as follows: Macon Ravenwood (Jeremy Irons - yes, I know, combining movie/book, so sue me!) and Ridley.
Why is it that authors can never write stories about the interesting characters? I don't give two sh!ts about Dork In Disguise and Emo Poetry Girl (who cares about their names, they don't even really matter in these types of books) - I'd much rather read about Ridley tearing people to bits, and Macon being deliciously cheesy Southern Gentleman Boo Radley Rip-Off.
At this point, given how reliant this book is on cliches, I can already imagine how the book ends, and I don't like what I expect. So therefore, I've come up with a better ending, one that takes all the cliches and turns them upside down.
To be fair, this book isn't THAT bad (the writing is mostly competent and THANK GOD Ethan is NOT Patch!), but if you've read ANY Young Adult Urban Fantasy, you can predict from page 1 what will happen. It's terribly generic and formulaic, and I don't really recommend to anyone, unless you absolutely LOVE everything from this genre, particularly Fallen.