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August 8, 2011

Review: Tris & Izzie by Mette Ivie Harrison

A modern retelling of the German fairytale "Tristan and Isolde", Tris and Izzie is about a young witch named Izzie who is dating Mark King, the captain of the basketball team and thinks her life is going swimmingly well. Until -- she makes a love potion for her best friend Brangane and then ends up taking it herself accidentally, and falling in love with Tristan, the new guy at school.

I've never read the original tale of Tristan and Isolde, so I jumped into Tris & Izzie without any particular expectation. What I got out of it was a fast, easy read with no exceptional elements.

Izzie is the typical popular high school student and girlfriend of Mark King. However, she's also an elemental sorceress. She has powers that one can only dream of, and because of them, Izzie is being hunted. Her love interest aside from Mark is Tristan, the transfer student who seems to fit in just fine amongst Izzie's group of friends. As Izzie soon finds out, Tris is much more than just new eye candy.

Izzie was certainly not my ideal protagonist. She started off as shallow and basically stupid--what kind of girl whips up a love potion to give to her best friend without asking at all? On top of that, Izzie is blind in regard to what this best friend, Brangane, truly wants in a guy. Tristan was nothing special in a fictional male, either--in fact, his constant use of formal language really started to bother me. The fantasy aspect was interesting but underdeveloped, and I wish the author had done more with it.

In my opinion, Tris & Izzie would be fine as a middle grade novel if the characters were younger. I didn't see anything special about it, but at the same time, it wasn't bad. If you're looking for some quick entertainment, check it out.

Rating: 2.5/5 stars

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