Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Review: Die for Me by Amy Plum

Die for Me by Amy Plum
Die for Me (Revenants #1)
By Amy Plum

To Sum It Up:

After losing their parents in a car accident, Kate Mercier and her sister leave New York to live with their grandparents in Paris. Kate, still struggling with her grief, often spends her time in the company of only her books, but she’s about to be drawn out of her solitude and into an entirely different world once she meets the mysterious and handsome Vincent Delacroix. To be with a revenant like Vincent, though, means watching him sacrifice his life for others over and over again, and Kate is unsure if she can handle that. Being in the company of Vincent and his fellow revenants is also dangerous, because they have enemies who will stop at nothing to eliminate their foes.


Die for Me boasts a very novel premise, a gorgeous Parisian setting, and a beautiful cover. In the end, though, this felt like just another average YA paranormal book, mainly because the characters seemed all too familiar. If they hadn’t followed YA archetypes so closely, this could have been a standout read.

There were quite a few shades of Twilight in Die for Me. Human girl spots hot, enigmatic guy who later turns out to be not-so-human. Not-so-human guy follows human girl around for a bit. Eternal love ensues, but not without potential obstacles, like one character being immortal and such. Now, I confess to being a Twilight fan (though not as much as when I first read the books), but Die for Me doesn’t add anything groundbreaking to what’s become heavily traveled territory in YA.

Kate is yet another heroine who becomes entangled with the paranormal and gets all angsty about whether or not her relationship with her supernatural boyfriend can work. Vincent is another insanely good-looking, superhuman knight in shining armor with a tragic past. I had a hard time finding these two characters exciting to read about because there was nothing to distinguish them from the other Bella and Edward types I’d read about before. Kate spends quite a bit of the novel mulling over the Vincent situation, and that does not make for especially compelling reading, at least for me. There are some action scenes towards the end, but the book is more of a love story than anything. That would have been fine if I’d been able to take more than a mild interest in this couple and what happened to them.

I would have given this three stars, but there are a few things that merit an extra half star. Amy Plum brings Paris to such vivid life that I wanted to grab my passport and hop on a plane. I easily pictured Kate sitting in a sidewalk cafĂ©, lost in her book. Reading Die for Me was like getting a mini-tour of Paris, and I loved that aspect of the novel. I also liked the camaraderie between Vincent and his fellow revenants; they obviously cared for each other like family. I thought that some of these secondary characters, like Jules, showed a lot of personality, and I would have welcomed reading more about them. Finally, I found the concept of the revenants unique; they’re kind of like superheroes, in that they exist to throw themselves in the path of danger in order to save others. I would not object in the least to being rescued by one.

While Die for Me didn’t bowl me over, I feel I should give the sequel, Until I Die, a chance in the hopes of seeing some character growth for Kate and Vincent. Overall, I thought this book had potential that wasn’t realized, and it’s enough to make me willing to take a gamble on the second book. Plus, I’d love to revisit Paris.

All in All:

Have you ever finished a book and thought, “Well, that wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t amazing, either”? That’s how I feel about this one. I found the main characters lacking, which is often sufficient to sink a book for me, but in other ways, like the descriptions of the setting, Die for Me was too good to give it a lower rating.


  1. I long for some fresh characters and premises, too. Sigh. I guess it really all has been done!

    1. I liked the unique concept of the book; I just wish that the characters had been equally original.

  2. I've seen a lot of similar thoughts/reviews about this one. And for a lot of people, the setting and Parisian descriptions had a huge impact on their overall impression of the book. I found this one as an e-book a while back for a really great bargain. Glad I didn't splurge on a hardback or anything ;) Great review Lee, here's hoping the sequel will really impress you!

    1. I hope it does, too. There have been a few series where I was on the fence about continuing because I wasn't crazy over the first book, but the series got better as they went along. Fingers crossed that this series will be like that.

  3. I tried so hard to get into this but I can't. Maybe I should give it another try but I think I won't give it any higher than three stars.

    1. I loved the setting and thought that the revenants were an interesting idea, otherwise I would have given this three stars, too. If you decide to try it again, I hope it works out better for you this time!

  4. It sounds like such a cool premise, too bad it didn't live up to expectations!

    1. It's so disappointing when that happens. Unless I really dislike the first book in a series, I try to hang in there and give the second book a chance.


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