Harper Price, peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper’s destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength and lethal fighting instincts.
Just when life can’t get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she’s charged to protect: David Stark, school reporter, subject of a mysterious prophecy and possibly Harper’s least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him—and discovers that David’s own fate could very well be to destroy Earth.
Description taken from Goodreads.
So here’s a wildly unpopular opinion for you: I didn’t love Rachel Hawkin’s HEX HALL series. I got about eighty pages in to the first book and didn’t read the rest. The main character of the HEX HALL series just didn’t cut it for me, and it’s not like I’m really into paranormal in the first place.
Honestly, I can’t say whether I think people will enjoy or won’t enjoy this book. I was in the middle. I think that because I didn’t love the HEX HALL series, it was easier for me because I came in not really caring. I didn’t know what to expect. All around, I do think this book is worth a shot because if you are a Hex Hall fan, I’m sure you’ll be eager for more of Hawkins’s writing. If you aren’t a Hex Hall fan or haven’t read the books, well, REBEL BELLE is attractive, has good writing and a unique premise.
The thing is that I feel like Hawkins captured the personality exactly of what I expected Harper to be like. Haughty, arrogant, somewhat shallow, somewhat stupid in a “it’s common sense, c’mon” way, that’s what I expected her to be like and in my mind, that’s exactly what I got. Those are her defining traits and even though I didn’t like David either because of what a jerk he was especially in the beginning, I pitied David because he had to put up with her “slightly superior” self.
The action in this was okay, at the very least and the very most. The whole book has this sluggish feel to it, mostly–I feel–because of the contemporary start. The fighting scenes are good, but still felt a little dragged down and not as intense as many of the fighting scenes I’ve seen, even in contemporary-fantasy fiction. The adventure, mystery and paladin themes were quirky and hard to understand but it was still a cool concept and I liked the way David and Harper had to learn to work together and eventually became a couple. I’m still on the fence about how I feel about them in a romance, but I feel like Harper and David both grew due to it so I’m open to it.
Overall, the plot and pacing to this were thrown off–but I was entertained by the story overall. Pacing got a little faster and a lot more stable towards the end of the book and things only got better after the initially rocky beginning. I would like to see more of where the book was going when it ended in the next books, because it is going in a good direction. I’d also love to see more growth in the characters, because Harper, David and countless other supporting characters were just really shallow for me, but overall 3 stars.
pg count for the hardback: 345
Series: Rebel Belle