THE SUNDAY REVIEW: Half Bad by Sally Green


Screen Shot 2015-01-04 at 10.49.15 AMSixteen-year-old Nathan lives in a cage: beaten, shackled, trained to kill. In a modern-day England where two warring factions of witches live amongst humans, Nathan is an abomination, the illegitimate son of the world’s most terrifying and violent witch, Marcus. Nathan’s only hope for survival is to escape his captors, track down Marcus, and receive the three gifts that will bring him into his own magical powers—before it’s too late.”

So, let me first say, this description did not really appeal to me. It sounds kind of vague and dry, but the book had gotten so much buzz, and I’m always on the hunt for YA/NA with male protagonists – so, I gave it a shot. And I’m glad I did, because Half Bad is pretty darn good. (I really really wanted to say “it’s not half bad!” but I couldn’t bring myself to do it.)

The main character, Nathan, is pretty likeable, his sister Jessica is deliciously awful, and the rest of the side characters are great (although does anyone else sort of dislike Annalise, for no specific reason? No? Just me? Mmk). Honestly, the whole thing is very well-written, and I would have no qualms recommending it to anyone looking for a great YA read.

That being said, can anyone explain to me why the first few chapters (and then a few random chapters in the middle) are written in second person while the rest is in first person?? It’s not that I didn’t like it, exactly, I’m just confused. Is it just a gimmick, or is there some sort of meaning to it that I’m missing? Anyone??

xo Elizabeth