Masque of the Red Death - Bethany Griffin
Masque of the Red Death is one that for some reason I kept putting off. I had checked it out at my library numerous times (including the month before this read-a-long), but for some reason just never could pick it up. Edgar Allen Poe is a favorite author for me. I love gothic literature. It had beena while since I had read his Masque of the Red Death, but I picked it back up and read it again in prep for this.
Masque of the Red Death has many paralells to Poe's short story. To me it seems that Griffin literally took the short story and expanded upon it, she made it a full featured story. She gave it depth and body. Griffin really did a great job and I did like how she kept the tone of Poe's short story. I loved that.
Araby Worth has a had a rough life and she lives in her grief and guilt. She pretty much totures herself and seeks to be numb. hse has put herself in a world that attempts to ignore the problems around them, but also in a constant state of fear. Fear of death and a horrible contagion that causes it. Araby has set standards for herself and keeps to them. Until she meets Will and Elliot. This begins a story of suspense, mystery, and awe. Araby embarks on a journey like no other and we have to figure out whether she can see it thorugh to the end. There were parts I didn't see coming and this book really kept me guessing and I like that a lot. That just doesn't happen often enough anymore sadly. This one did. It is full of twists, turns, betrayals, and just so much. it really is enjoyable to read. My only thing... I think the hype to the book may have killed it a little for me. Don't get me wrong it is really good and quite epic honestly, but the hype built it up so much more than that for me. Still loved it and marked it as a favorite though.
I like Araby, mainly because of the growth we see from her throughout the book. She really does come out of her shell and learn to deal with her grief and guilt, she begins to learn that she is allowed to move past it and the reasons for doing it. in the beginning she appears to be sort of shallow, but she is not. You can see that there is something to her that this line is fake. I completely understood her anger at times and agreed with her. Araby's parents drove me nuts at first, I did not like them. Her mother more so than her father. her father, I think, handled his grief sort of like Araby. He just threw himself into his work... my opinion of him changes as the book moves and i really like the man now and I see how much he loves Araby. Araby's mother... my opinion changed as well. I understand her now and I feel for her. April... I'm not all that fond of April. She seems sort of crazy, but I guess with the things she deals with in life she would sort of have to be to survive. She was just way too shallow for me, but we also see her true self later. I began to like her a little better by the end of the book and I plan on reading the novella to get more into her character. I see now that she was actually inmany ways like Araby, but did it more extravegantly. Will... the good bad boy. LOVE Will. I do. I can't help it. Even as the book concludes, I am angry with him and hurt, but I still love him. Elliot I did not like either. Really hated Elliot and at times just wanted to strangle him, but towards the conclusion I began to understand him better and began to really see him. I like him, not as much as Will, but I do like him a lot. I cannot wait to see how their stories will conclude. All the characters in this story have so much depth and deal with such extreme issues that seem so much older than they really are. They are mainly all still children, but dealing with such adult issues. The Prince... OMG I wish someone wuld have stabbed him already. He is just too manipulative and sneaky for me... he is probably one of the best bad guys I have read in a while to tell you the truth. I HATE him... despise him! Griffin did great with him and really kept the personality that Poe described in his story.
Overall, I truly did love this book. The only reason I gave it 4 stars is because the hype kind of did me in. So not the author's fault at all. I just read so many reviews to get myself to read it... which is probably in the end why I didn't read it sooner. I was scared this would happen. In fact, Griffin has written an amazing book that kept to the tone and themes of Edgar Allen Poe's Masque of the Red Death. This really is an amazing book and I cannot wait to read the conclusion Dance of the Red Death when I can get my hands on it. My library hasn't gotten a copy yet. Seriously people... read this book.

Quotes:
"If I pushed April and her sparkling silver eyelids out of the open carriage, the crowd lining this street might kill her." kindle location 85

"She is animated. I'm barely alive." kindle location 104

"'What do you want?" he asks in an amused voice. His self-assurance makes him seem older than he looks. I'm guessing that he would be a student at the university, if it were still open.
"Oblivion." It is what I am always looking for.
"What's a pretty girl like you trying to forget?"
A pretty girl like me, with my clean fingernails and my unblemished bill of health.
He doesn't know anything about me." kindle location 177

"LIFE IS SACRED. DEATH IS EVEN MORE SO." kindle location 365

"It would be too coincidental...but then, Father saved humanity and couldn't save his own son. I don't discount coincidence. Or ugly, gut-wrenching irony." kindle location 718

"'Talent doesn't disappear when you get sick," Elliot observes.
"Not until you die. Then it's gone forever," I say quietly." kindle location 2243

"'Thank you for keeping her safe," Elliot tells Will. His voice sounds sincere, but I don't trust sincerity from him.
"I will always keep her safe," Will says, raising his eyebrows.
They stare at each other, over my head. I look back and forth between them, trying to think of something, anything, to say. April rolls her eyes." kindle location 2916

"'Good, because one family should only have so many crazies, and I'm not going to compound these sins by wearing lipstick that is too red.'" kindle location 3781