Vampires, witches, and funny intrigue. Okay, so that's three nouns, an adjective, and a conjunction. That means it's in the style of the book, so sue me. If you can find me, that is.
Rowling is really good at character. There are several characters that should have been cliche, but were instead rendered in shades of grey. A couple of the characters I found utterly vile, but in a three dimensional and interesting way. Rowling's also good at making readers cry.
Krystal, Sukhvinder, and Barry are my favorites. Barry because of his good heart, and Krystal because she's trying to hard with the unfair responsibilities placed on her young shoulders. And Sukhvinder because she steps up and does some good, brave things.
People compare this to the Potter books, but I think they're forgetting how dark the Potter books are when they do. The Potter books have murder, child abuse, racism, etc., and she's dealing with similar dark issues in this book. Her admiration of courage, her dislike of pettiness, and her horror at children being mistreated shine through in all Rowling's work.
Neil Gaiman has a lovely speaking voice. He very quickly drew me in to the story.
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