Monday, April 8, 2013

Vengeance Bound by Justina Ireland Review

Vengeance Bound by Justina Ireland
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Goodreads Summary-The Goddess Test meets Dexter in an edgy, compelling debut about one teen’s quest for revenge… no matter how far it takes her.

Cory Graff is not alone in her head. Bound to a deal of desperation made when she was a child, Cory’s mind houses the Furies—the hawk and the serpent—lingering always, waiting for her to satisfy their bloodlust. After escaping the asylum where she was trapped for years, Cory knows how to keep the Furies quiet. By day, she lives a normal life, but by night, she tracks down targets the Furies send her way. And she brings down Justice upon them.

Cory’s perfected her system of survival, but when she meets a mysterious boy named Niko at her new school, she can’t figure out how she feels about him. For the first time, the Furies are quiet in her head around a guy. But does this mean that Cory’s finally found someone who she can trust, or are there greater factors at work? As Cory’s mind becomes a battlefield, with the Furies fighting for control, Cory will have to put everything on the line to hold on to what she’s worked so hard to build. 

I'm not really sure how to describe this one. It was a lot of fun to read. It starts out with a bang, seeking justice and how can you hate that. I love my husband and boys in YA in general,but maybe I've watched a few too many CSI's or too many news stories. I like it when men get hunted down and served justice that the courts didn't give them. So, I really love Cory. She's taking care of the bad guys, the really, really bad ones. I do not have a problem with that! Smite away.

However, the things that are helping her are the Furies, yes those, from Greek Mythology. They came to her in a time of great need and she's had them literally in her ever since. Cory busts out of a mental institution having suffered greatly at the hands of her psychiatrist with his drug treatments. She's been on the run for two years now and has finally settled down back close to home in PA. Her parents died in a car crash on their way to visit her in another treatment center when she was young. She then went to live with a grandmother who also died. It had something to do with the Furies. All of it had something to do with them. But Cory can't escape them. She is quickly becoming their third. When she starts at a new high school, they whisper to her about all the horrible thoughts and misdeeds of every boy that passes by. But never the women. They never speak about the bad deeds of women. But they are more than happy to pass judgement on the boys and men. Until Niko comes along. They are eerily quiet around him.

The romance is pretty quick, Cory and Niko not being able to live without each other happens too soon. But I remember high school and how hard I fell for someone and how quickly so, I do try to cut some slack in the insta love department. And I don't know, I think if I had Cory's problem I'd want Niko around all the time, too if he can shut them up. But their declarations of love are a bit premature. They don't know anything about each other. Still it was forgivable. I think if there are Furies there is also Fate playing a hand so maybe they were fated.

The really fascinating part of the book was how Cory sought justice. The Furies couldn't manifest in the human world unless she let them. So they would find a different way to let her know who the victim was. Then Cory hunts this man. Always a man. She plays the victim one time to a tow truck driver who she finds in a bar. She talks to the bartender pretending she needs a tow and he points her to the tow truck driver, even though she knows who he is. Now the bartender sees them leave together. She's the last person to be seen with him. But when he turns up dead the next day miles away and his truck is in the bar parking lot and Cory's car is gone, no one is going to think to ask about her? Fingerprints? She's apparently very pretty. The bartender won't remember her? Some of those details didn't feel very tight to me. I tried to explain them away, but they just kept bugging me. But police investigative work isn't the point of the story. Just know you're going to have to accept those parts and move along or you'll miss the important stuff. Don't worry about fingerprints.

The point is this, Cory needed the Furies once a long time ago and now she doesn't. Now she's in danger of losing herself over to them. They are slowly gaining control of her. And if she doesn't find an answer to how to get rid of them, she'll be their third forever and Lord help the male population then. Because they will kill innocent men just as quick as guilty. As the story builds, the reason Cory needed the Furies in the first place begins to be revealed, another terrifying tale. Cory hasn't had an easy life. But there is hope for her and the ending is solid enough that I was really happy I read the novel.

Cory has a bit of snark that comes out when it shouldn't. Actually, her asides in her head are wicked good. She is also very practical. She's not used to having friends but she tries her hardest to be a good friend to the raggedy band of kids she chooses to sit with on her first day of school. She tries to shield Niko from her evil. But you can't love someone and only know half of them. Did I say I love that she kills the truly evil guys?? To me, she's the only fully developed character. The story seems so hurried we don't have enough time to learn anyone else any deeper. I will say, in the end, justice is served in every way imaginable.

I don't think this is a series. It felt complete to me. It's fun, quick and violent. I recommend it to lovers of action packed YA novels with a fast pace and romance. There is a definite nod to Greek Mythology with the Furies. Not for the younger set, typical older crowd things are mentioned, drinking, sex, there might have been some language but it wasn't excessive since I'm not remembering it and I just finished the book today. I suppose I should make better notes. I think it's a winner!



  1. Fun, quick and violent has its place. Cory sounds like fun to read about as a main character.
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  2. "I do not have a problem with that! Smite away."

    Hahahaha I LOVE that Heather! This must have been the book you were talking about when you left your comment about Furious, I've been wanting to read this one but since I'd just read Furious and they're similar premise-wise, I held off. I do plan to pick this one up though, and I don't think the insta love will bother me too much. Like you said, if I was around a boy that made the Furies be quiet, I would likely develop feelings for him equally quickly:)

    1. Yes, this is the book I was talking about and since this book was an action book with the real Furies, I felt like Furious might be a bit I don't know not redundant but lacking after the excitement of this book. Furious is a contemp, from what I'm getting and this is supernatural. I liked this take better. And yes there is lots of Smiting!! But yeah, I'd hold off a bit before I read this one since you just read Furious.

  3. Man, I hopped over here on the perfect day. This is one of the (many) books sitting by my bed waiting for me. Even with the insta-love and poor police work, I think this one is for me. I need some good justice playing out on the page right now, I think.

    1. Oh, well you have come to the right book! This men definitely deserve their justice! It's awesome to read!

      Thanks for popping over. Apparently I didn't offend you about Warner!

  4. I can see the same things bugging me as it did you. I would probably also like it more developed in places. Still, it sounds entertaining enough for me and I do think I would enjoy it. Smite away indeed! LOL

    1. I DARE you not to be entertained by this. With the humor and the vigilante justice, there is no way you can't be entertained! You just have to realize, it's not a police investigation kind of book. These guys aren't really someone that anyone would miss anyway.

  5. I like that the story felt complete to you. I have this one on my shelf but I'm not sure when I'll get to it. I have heard some mixed things but I agree that sometimes we can let the insta love go a little. Especially if he quiets the furies. Early declaration of love is annoying, but might not ruin the story. Your review has me more excited to read this one now!


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