Review: Mortal Danger

Mortal Danger, Ann Aguirre (Immortal Game #1)


Expected publication: August 5th 2014 by Feiwel & Friends

384 pages

Source: NetGalley

From Goodreads..

Revenge is a dish best served cold.

Edie Kramer has a score to settle with the beautiful people at Blackbriar Academy. Their cruelty drove her to the brink of despair, and four months ago, she couldn’t imagine being strong enough to face her senior year. But thanks to a Faustian compact with the enigmatic Kian, she has the power to make the bullies pay. She’s not supposed to think about Kian once the deal is done, but devastating pain burns behind his unearthly beauty, and he’s impossible to forget.

In one short summer, her entire life changes, and she sweeps through Blackbriar, prepped to take the beautiful people down from the inside. A whisper here, a look there, and suddenly… bad things are happening. It’s a heady rush, seeing her tormentors get what they deserve, but things that seem too good to be true usually are, and soon, the pranks and payback turns from delicious to deadly. Edie is alone in a world teeming with secrets and fiends lurking in the shadows. In this murky morass of devil’s bargains, she isn’t sure who—or what–she can trust. Not even her own mind…

We meet Edie as she is on her way to commit suicide, and this was the most intense beginning to a book I’ve had in a while.  She feels broken thanks to the “Teflon Crew” at her private high school and she’s given up.  Your heart kind of breaks for this poor kid.  Edie is saved at the last minute by the beautiful Kian who offers her a deal.  3 favors to be given in exchange for any 3 favors from Edie.

Does it sound too good to be true to you too?

Thankfully, Edie decides not to jump off a bridge and decides to take Kian up on his offer.  She chooses to be made perfectly beautiful and starts to concoct a plan to take revenge on the Teflon Crew when school resumes in the fall.  I was surprised at how much I was rooting for Edie.  I like to think I’m more of the turn the other cheek philosophy, but I wanted to see Edie get some of herself back against the bullies at her school.  I felt like Edie was growing up as the book progressed and she got to see a new side of the Teflon Crew as they accepted her new beautiful face into their circle.

Most of what I did not love about Mortal Danger was the romance.  I was ok in the beginning with Edie’s immediate romantic feelings for Kian.  The dude saved her life and then transformed it-of course she’s going to be in love with him!  My problems with the romance developed as it became more clear that Kian wasn’t entirely honest and that Edie refused to see it.  Edie was supposed to be a smart girl-but convinced herself Mr. Too Good To Be True was everything he appeared.  Edie finds out eventually that she is just a pawn in a large and brutal game.

This book is a whole lot more than the Goodreads description.  Mortal Danger explodes in the end into a what is kind of a mess of warring deities from all backgrounds.  There have to be supernatural forces at work to make Edie’s favors happen-I expected that.  But the scale this game was played on kind of came out of nowhere for me.  This made me think of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods for young adults with monsters from all belief backgrounds.  Now American Gods is one of my most favorite books in the whole world, so this gives me hope for the future of the series.  Edie gives me hope for the next book as well because I want her to come back to being smart!  I’ll keep reading because I want her to find her real self, not just the beautiful self.  I hope there’s more explanation and cohesion as the series continues.

Honestly, the most moving part of this book was Ann Aguirre’s afterward about suicide.  I hope that this book is well read for that alone.  And I’m echoing her plea to seek help if you’re thinking about harming yourself -someone will listen.  

3 Stars

Thank you Feiwel & Friends and NetGalley for this advance read copy in exchange for an honest opinion.

This was my first Ann Aguirre book but she seems to have some popular ones. Any suggestions for what to try next from her?


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