Saturday, March 21, 2015

Tea Time: I See the Web

Alright, guys. So today I have the first of a three-part review series, which means that for the next three weeks (today included) I'll be reviewing Cait Spivey's THE WEB series. Why am I calling this a review series? Partially because I feel like it, and partially because the exciting thing is that each of the parts of Spivey's series are novellas, not novels. Novellas are tons of fun, and they're complete, quick reads, and they require a lot of talent due to their succinct form (my own humble opinion). Which means that I hope you're excited as I am.

Plus: there's a Goodreads giveaway going on right now for the first two books in the series. Make it to the bottom of the post, and enter!

**Warning: Spoilers May Bound**

I See the Web (The Web #1), Cait Spivey

Seventeen-year-old Erin has a lot to look forward to, even if it suddenly seems like everywhere she turns there’s a spider staring at her. She’s finally out to her friends and family, surprising exactly no one. When Dawn, the love of her tender teenage dreams, corners her in the library, a whole new world opens up to Erin. From here on out, it’s all make-out sessions with her beautiful girlfriend in rooms stacked high with books.

Until the spiders start whispering.

Turns out the spiders aren't just stalking her for kicks. They need her to be their voice, their vessel, whatever that means. But their timing is crap, because there's no way Erin is giving up her human life just when things are starting to get amazing. Too bad the spiders just won't quit. Like it or not, Erin will have to choose, and it won't be nearly as easy as she thinks.

A paranormal romance novella, I SEE THE WEB originally appeared in serial on author Cait Spivey's website, and is now available as a complete edition.(source:goodreads)

Narrative-This novella is told from the first-person POV of Erin, the quirky (very quirky) protagonist. I'd be lying if I said that the voice isn't what pulled me in; the very first page opens with Erin explaining her fear of spiders and the way in which she gently coaxes them out of her bedroom while curled up in fear as far away as she can get.

It made me smile. It really, really did.

Erin's well-constructed voice tells the story in a fun manner, which is impressive given the creepy content. I'd love to spend more time in her head, just to follow the hyperactive thought-processes that are both handled with ease, and extremely easy to relate to as a reader.

Plot-Erin's trying to get her best friend to believe her when she says she's a lesbian, and when Geri (the best friend) finally does believe her, then things go pretty alright. Then her mother and brother find out, and nobody's surprised, and the very next day the girl she's been crushing on at school finds her at the library (sent there by Erin's brother), and the two hit it off.

So life's going pretty good for Erin.

Except for all the spiders that keep showing up.

That, alone, is enough to make me shiver. The spiders just keep showing up. And then when Erin tells them to go away, they go away. They just crawl into whatever dark corner they decide to hide in. And then there's a really creepy nightmare, and then a really creepy dream, and Erin starts to figure out why the spiders have suddenly started showing up. And it's not for a good reason.

I SEE THE WEB is horror. And it's horror that's written very well. While I wasn't crazy about how intense the relationship between Erin and her girlfriend became (it was just really super quick), overall the pacing was well done and all of the pieces of the puzzle fit and flowed together so well that I was hanging onto every page and read it through in one sitting (it's a novella, about 55 pages; quick and extremely satisfying read).

Characters-I've already kind of gushed about Erin, but let me do it again: she's realistic, funny, smart, quirky, and all-around the kind of girl I'd like to call a friend just because she'd keep life interesting for me (that's before the spiders, by the way).

Moving on to other characters: Morgan (the brother) is an intimidating presence, but I think that's only because he's described as being intimidating...and he's a bouncer at a night club. And that's kind of cool. But underneath the grizzly appearance he's just a giant teddy bear who cares about his sister (it's hinted that the only reason he hasn't left the small town after graduating high school yet is because he's waiting for Erin to graduate so he wouldn't be forced to leave her alone). Plus, he's the one who sent Dawn to the library to find Erin so the two girls could hit it off. I mean, does he deserve brother points, or does he deserve brother points?

Dawn. Dawn...honestly, Dawn confused me. She was shy and intense and kind of adorable as far as being Erin's girlfriend went, and I'm pretty sure she had a heart of gold. What confused me was her dialogue sometimes, and the way she acted; it made it really hard for me to really pin her down as a character, which would have been a good thing if she was deeper into the paranormal stuff happening than she actually was. So while I can say that yes, I liked her, I didn't think she was as well written as I would have liked.

Last is Theo, but all I really have to say about Theo is that oh my god he's such a creep. So.

Guys, I mentioned before: this is a novella, and it's a well-written one. Go read it in one sitting, and you'll see where I'm coming from. And you'll see why I've already picked up and read the second in the series.

Final Answer: 4.66 / 5

As promised, there's also a chance to win THE FIRST WEB, which is a paperback version of I SEE THE WEB and its sequel, A SINGLE THREAD. So if you're interested, check out this Goodreads Giveaway (open through March 31). You can also Buy Direct straight from Cait Spivey.

Meet the Author:

Cait Spivey is a speculative fiction writer and freelance editor. Fiction is a passion she doesn’t see giving up any time soon. In her spare time, she plans her next tattoo (there will always be a next tattoo) and watches too much Netflix. Anything left over is devoted to her tireless quest to make America read more. She lives in Portland, Oregon, with her darling husband Matt and adorable dog Jay.

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