REVIEW ✧ THE POWER

“I had to prove that what he believed wasn’t true. Prove that he was the total of everything he had done and not the dark things he was ashamed of, and I would do so because I loved him and accepted him for who he was, for all his faults. That was what love meant. Love fostered courage.” 

☆☆☆☆

With any great change, there is always strife, and the Covenant University has become the frontline between pure-bloods who want the Breed Order reinstated and the half-bloods who want the right to control their own destinies.

Fate has other plans.

The violence is escalating and war between the races seems inevitable, and it couldn’t come at a worse time. Hyperion may be out of commission, but Josie and Seth know they have only earned a reprieve.  Seth must get Josie fully prepared, which means controlling her newfound abilities, and they need to find the other demigods before the Titans do.

But the gods are sensing a greater threat. 

Only one thing is more dangerous than a bunch of starved Titans, and that’s an out-of-control Apollyon. The aether in Josie is drawing Seth in deeper, and when lust mixes with love and gives way to power, he knows being close to her is not only dangerous to her, but to everyone around them, but letting her go requires a level of selflessness that just isn’t Seth’s style.

The paths taken in the past are becoming the roads of the future.

Just as chaos breaks out, familiar faces from the past return, complicating the already strained bond between Josie and Seth, and when the danger from the Titans erupts with devastating consequences, the dark allure of power calls to Seth again, but this time Josie might not be able to pull him back.

 And when the struggle between power and love becomes the deadliest battleground, there may be no salvation.

I’m so glad I can finally give this book the full 4 stars because it truly deserves it. One thing I’ve noticed in me reading any of Armentrout’s series is that I tend to rate the first book higher than the second book so I think this is the first time that the opposite happened. I have two theories for why I’ve rated this book higher: 1) it managed not to suffer from the oh so exhausting second book syndrome or 2) it’s because Alex and Aiden are back and made everything better. I think it might be both but let’s be honest, Alex and Aiden made it all better. And I’m not even slightly ashamed to admit that. But in all seriousness, this book just felt so utterly and completely better than the first book in every single aspect of it and, I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but my enjoyment level right now is infinitely higher than it was when I was reading Covenant. To be fair, the second book of that series was kind of a mess and it was all Seth’s fault but he’s a…..slightly better person now? Sure, let’s go with that.

You all know the drill: because this is a second book in a series, I cannot properly review it without revealing spoilers so a giant SPOILER ALERT is now in effect.

THE GOOD

  • I’m gonna come right out and say it: Alex and Aiden being back is hands down my favourite thing of this book. It’s kinda funny because usually when I’m reading spinoffs, the characters from the original series make cameos here and there and don’t really add much to the plot of the spinoff. Even in NA series where it’s technically a 4-book series, all can more or less be read as standalones, the couples from the previous books barely make any appearance and that’s something that can bother me. So coming into this one, I did not expect to see a whole lot of Alex and Aiden nor did I expect them to contribute that much to the plot. Thank god, or gods, that I was SO wrong about them. Not only were they there for essentially the latter half of the book but they were important for the plot and for both Josie and Seth’s characters. I was afraid that Josie and Alex wouldn’t get on, due to the past that she shared with Seth, but I think that Alex has not only grown out of her slight “hating girls” phase (she did, don’t even pretend she didn’t) but she too has become a better person and really wants to have a relationship with Josie. I love that she used their connection to Apollo as a basis and built on that with various commonalities between them. They’re similar, for sure, but they’re also super different and I’m glad that, for me at least, Armentrout has written these two girls on different sides of the spectrum but still have them being strong and badass in their own ways. I also did not expect to see Aiden and Seth interacting in any way but it made me so happy to see that even though they don’t like each other, Aiden constantly recognizes what Seth did for him and I’m glad he was able to thank him. I also think that maybe deep down, Seth does like Aiden a tiny bit, or even respects him ever so slightly, and as the book goes on you can see some of it showing. I love how Alex and Aiden are being used in the story and even though at this point they’re more of secondary characters, they still have a lot of importance. It doesn’t feel like they’re taking over from Seth and Josie, either, and it’s still very much their story and they’re just along for the ride. I’m hoping these two couples can continue to bond and create a great friendship altogether.
  • Even though Alex and Aiden are really what amped up my enjoyment of this book, I will say that I firmly believe that in no way did this book suffer from second book syndrome, which is something I noticed in both Lux and Covenant. Part of me wonders if it’s because we don’t have a love triangle this time, but I think because Armentrout already knows majority of these characters and only needs to focus on truly developing Seth and Josie it just becomes a better book overall. I think the plot is continuing to grow stronger, which is absolutely one of Armentrout’s strengths, and I really think we’re heading in yet another solid direction. I like the focus on finding the other demigods and concentrating on how exactly they’ll be used to defeat the Titans but I’m confident that it’ll be crazy and insane, as usual. And I’m still enjoying the secondary plot point of the issues between the halfs and the pures and now that I think about it, I’m wondering if the Titans also have anything to do with the added animosity to the situation but I do think it’s another important social commentary and I love how Armentrout’s been handling it thus far. Even though I know the Titans issue is more important, I also know that she’s gonna work them both out in the end. Because Armentrout knows her characters and she knows her plot, it makes it so easy to escape second book syndrome this time around and everything can come together so much simpler this time around. She’s doing such a great job with this series so far and I’m really impressed that we didn’t go down the same path as her previous second books.
  • I know I’ve already stated how much I really love the romance between Josie and Seth, though they’re never gonna replace Alex and Aiden, but I really love what’s going on with them. We might’ve hit some drama here and there in the first half of the book but I think it’s a drama that I can understand. I think it’s really a testament to Seth’s overall development because he’s putting Josie before himself and not wanting to endanger her, especially when it’s him that could be the danger. It makes me respect him a hell of a lot more than I used to and it for sure shows how different he is. But what really does it for me is that Seth doesn’t believe he deserves Josie’s love because of all that he’s done and those kind of characters kill me. And then you get the massive explanation of why he deserves her love and not only does that show how different Seth is now, because everything that Josie says he is wasn’t what he used to be, though he is now, but I think it shows how strong her love is for him. I really respect Josie for everything she does but the fact that she doesn’t back down from telling Seth how she feels and doesn’t let him tell her how to feel is one of the biggest things I respect. She’s such a great character overall and one I absolutely love and relate to, since she’s like me but in book form, so all of this just adds to my love for her.
  • Armentrout freaking busted out Hercules in this book. The Hercules. Like, wow. I mean sure, Hercules is a giant dick but I never expected in a million years that he’d show up in this series. He definitely brought some solid comedic relief to the book and made every scene he was in more enjoyable. I was already really happy with all the mythology used in this series but Hercules was like icing on the cake. And it’s a Hercules that’s watched both the old and new Beverly Hills, 90210 so he might be irritating but the demigod’s got taste.

THE BAD

  • Seth’s character was doing so well up until the end of this book and it’s like he took two steps backwards. Like him, I also didn’t think he could become the God Killer but it felt like all of his development was thrown away based on that one action. I expected him to revert back to his old ways because I know Seth but it disappointed me a lot, for sure. It’s like I was enjoying everything in this book minus Seth and this action solidified all of that.
  • Can Armentrout maybe not kill some of my favourites? I still can’t believe who she killed. How could she do that? They didn’t deserve that. I’m upset.

THE BOTTOM LINE

  • This might be one of the strongest second books I’ve read by Armentrout and it’s because of a variety of factors. The plot continues to be solid, the characters are developing fantastically, and the returning characters are important yet aren’t overshadowing of Seth and Josie. I love finding books that escape second book syndrome and this did just that. But I still stand by the fact that Alex and Aiden made this book better. They make everything better.

BONUS: how this book made me feel in a GIF

ABOUT THE BOOK

Title: The Power (Titan #2)
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: February 23, 2016
Pages: 255 (eBook)
Goodreads

Until next time,

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What did you think of the book? Leave a comment below!

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