Official Review: Never Fear the Reaper by Ashley Pagano

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hsimone
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Official Review: Never Fear the Reaper by Ashley Pagano

Post by hsimone »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Never Fear the Reaper" by Ashley Pagano.]
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2 out of 4 stars
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In a world where ghosts, poltergeists, and demons exist, comes a ride where fear can never be the feeling you have. Never Fear the Reaper by Ashley Pagano brings supernatural into what seems to be a normal world.

Chase has unfortunately been dealing with an invisible entity in his house for days. Left with no other choice, he enlists Ryder, a ghost exterminator, to take care of the problem. What he learns is not only that ghosts exists, but that he has a strong connection to the supernatural world, as well.

Noticing this new ability, Ryder agrees for Chase to tag along in her next couple of jobs. With the power of Ryder’s weapon, Scythe, directly from the Grim Reaper himself, they find themselves in a wild and dangerous ride that Chase will likely never forget.

I found it great that Pagano uses a strong and very-driven female as one of the leads in this story. Anytime this is done, it positively reinforces that women can be strong, resourceful, and become good role models for young girls.

However, there were a number of aspects of this read that were off-putting. Perhaps one of the biggest concerns I have is the inconsistency of character perspective. In the beginning, the first-person, present perspective is clearly used. After a few chapters, a new voice is introduced – two police officers who become involved in Chase and Ryder’s adventure. In Chapter Nine, though, both of these perspectives mesh together into one, which threw me for a loop. It was still in the first-person narrative using words like “I” and “me”, but focused on the officers; the storytelling goes as far as to share the officers’ thoughts and actions. Presumably Chase is telling the story, but since it is in the present time, how does he know what other people are thinking and doing, especially when he isn’t with them?

Then the characters in general were very bland. The officers had no recognizable qualities, making it difficult to distinguish who was the captain and who was the deputy, or determining if it even mattered. I also found Chase, at times, to be unlikable with his disrespect and odd moments of thinking about sex. Ryder was the most likable and most developed character even though the story was told through Chase’s eyes.

My last thoughts are about the writing style and the grammar. Oftentimes, Chase clearly shows his feelings when he experiences something new, but then he proceeds to explicitly state what his feelings are, causing repetition. For example, when warding off the supernatural, Chase spits out several questions toward Ryder, showing much trepidation. Immediately afterward, he shares “Clearly, I’m starting to panic.” (pg. 57) within his thoughts. This obvious statement is redundant, which causes the intensity in the action sequence to drop.

Grammatically, there are quotation marks missing and words misspelled or misused. Such as, “taping his foot” instead of “tapping his foot” (pg. 71) and “It’s is a ritual...” (pg. 92) including both the contraction and an extra “is”. These were fairly distracting.

Though I can see how teenagers might enjoy this read with its simplicity, casual romance, and straightforward plot, I simply did not. Aside from the younger audience, I cannot easily recommend this to anyone else. With much consideration, I give Never Fear the Reaper a 2 out of 4 stars.

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Post by LINA M-EMBER AMA »

The author can revisit the book to make it more palatable to all ages. I would like to read this book because of the the supernatural component and the presence of a female adventuress.
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Post by hsimone »

The supernatural was definitely the part that made me first interested, and definitely a fun, sassy and strong female character is appealing. I've seen that others have liked this read, so there's a chance that you will too. If you get the chance to read it, hope you enjoy it!
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Post by Agbinone Destiny »

It's an encouraging book that needs to be read quietly for proper understanding of each words used because it contains lot of suspense and grammatical words.
I highly recommend this book for all to go through.

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Post by hsimone »

Thank you for your comment, Agbinone Destiny. This book wasn't one that I enjoyed very much, but it seemed like you enjoyed it, which is good.
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Post by kandscreeley »

It's too bad that this one was so riddled with errors. That along with the perspective changes would really be off-putting. Thanks for the review. I'll skip this one.
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Post by MrsCatInTheHat »

When a story line is hard to follow because of things such as confusing narration, I tend to not be able to go on. I do think the cover suits the plot of the book.
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Post by hsimone »

kandscreeley wrote:It's too bad that this one was so riddled with errors. That along with the perspective changes would really be off-putting. Thanks for the review. I'll skip this one.
It is too bad because the premise is definitely an interesting one. Perhaps with another couple of edits/revision, the story could have been stronger. Thank you for your thoughts. :)

-- 08 Sep 2017, 17:12 --
CatInTheHat wrote:When a story line is hard to follow because of things such as confusing narration, I tend to not be able to go on. I do think the cover suits the plot of the book.
It definitely is off-putting because it disrupts the flow of the story. I absolutely agree - the cover is very fitting for the plot. Thank you for your thoughts.
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You did a great job. This is not my kind of book though.
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Post by geoffrey ngoima »

It was weird with the perspectives and characterization, ...
Great review.
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Post by KlareAllison »

From the review, Never Fear the Reaper is a book I might not be very eager to get into. However, I share hsimone's sentiments on Ashley Pagano's representation of a strong female character who is given prominence in this narrative.
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Post by Quinto »

The book has quite some flaws on characterization and writing style making it unappealing to read.

Thanks for your review hsimone, i enjoyed it.

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Post by hsimone »

Mercy Bolo wrote:You did a great job. This is not my kind of book though.
Thank you for your kind words, Mercy Bolo! This ended up not being my type of book either.

-- 09 Sep 2017, 14:07 --
beroempire wrote:Was very interesting
Welcome, beroempire, and thank you for sharing your thoughts. :)

-- 09 Sep 2017, 14:08 --
geoffrey ngoima wrote:It was weird with the perspectives and characterization, ...
Great review.
I found the perspective switching and meshing a bit odd, too. Thank you, geoffrey ngoima!

-- 09 Sep 2017, 14:09 --
KlareAllison wrote:From the review, Never Fear the Reaper is a book I might not be very eager to get into. However, I share hsimone's sentiments on Ashley Pagano's representation of a strong female character who is given prominence in this narrative.
Thank you, KlareAllison, for your thoughts. Ryder was definitely a great character for the story.

-- 09 Sep 2017, 14:10 --
Quinto wrote:The book has quite some flaws on characterization and writing style making it unappealing to read.

Thanks for your review hsimone, i enjoyed it.
The characterization and writing style wasn't to my taste for sure. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts, Quinto!
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Post by jacklinedaniels »

loved the book and it was interesting

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hsimone
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Post by hsimone »

I'm glad that you enjoyed this book, jacklinedaniels. I wasn't a big fan, but I'm glad that there are others who have!
"Love is patient, love is kind." -1 Corinthians 13:4

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