Review: Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon

Review: Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon

Dead Beautiful by Yvonne Woon

On the morning of her sixteenth birthday, Renée Winters was still an ordinary girl. She spent her summers at the beach, had the perfect best friend, and had just started dating the cutest guy at school. No one she’d ever known had died. But all that changes when she finds her parents dead in the Redwood Forest, in what appears to be a strange double murder.

After the funeral Renée’s wealthy grandfather sends her to Gottfried Academy, a remote and mysterious boarding school in Maine, where she finds herself studying subjects like Philosophy, Latin, and the “Crude Sciences.”

It’s there that she meets Dante Berlin, a handsome and elusive boy to whom she feels inexplicably drawn. As they grow closer, unexplainable things begin to happen, but Renée can’t stop herself from falling in love. It’s only when she discovers a dark tragedy in Gottfried’s past that she begins to wonder if the Academy is everything it seems.

Little does she know, Dante is the one hiding a dangerous secret, one that has him fearing for her life.

Dead Beautiful is both a compelling romance and thought-provoking read, bringing shocking new meaning to life, death, love, and the nature of the soul.

As soon as I read the synopsis for Dead Beautiful I knew this was a book written for me! it had my name all over it. Why you ask?

Ψ Boarding school setting
Ψ main character with special powers (that she learns to discovery)
Ψ mystery revolving around supernatural or paranormal happenings
Ψ secret society/club

If you know me or have read previous reviews, you know any books with boarding school/school settings are almost always up my alley, especially combined with a supernatural or paranormal mystery involved..add in a secret society or club and I’m slobbering over myself.

Dead beautiful met all my expectations. I really felt the main character’s grief over her parents loss, the shock of having her grandfather suddenly enter her life. At first I hated her grandfather, thinking him so insensitive and almost cruel, not thinking of his granddaughters grief. But I was pleasantly surprised that Woon helped us see a different side or him and I grew to like him.

I loved Gottfried Academy. It’s very mysterious and they don’t teach the average normal subjects that most schools do, so it was really intriguing and unlike other school setting novels – you’re not really sure WHAT makes Gottfried Academy different at first. One of the most intriguing aspects of the school is the Board of Monitors and the Latin club, both of which has very particular members and don’t talk about their activities. We gradually learn the reasons and motives behind both groups.

I loved Dead Beautiful from start to finish and even shed a tear on the final page. It’s not often I rush to Amazon and pay almost $9 for the next ebook – let’s say nearly never, especially at that price. But once I finished that final page I HAD TO get my hands on the next book. It feels good to be that gripped by a series – and one that has a few books out. I haven’t figured out of Dead Beautiful is a trilogy and all the books are released or if there are more books to come. I’m scared to read the third books synopsis for more information, worried of spoilers.

Dead Beautiful

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• This book was provided by the publisher for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own. Please note that this post also contains affiliate links. To view our full Blog Policy, click here.

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About April

A twenty-something who's always had a love for reading and now that passion includes her nook! When not blogging or reading, she's probably chatting on Skype--or doing all those things at once with music and TV in the mix! More posts by April »


  1. I’ve been mildly curious about this one! I should so look it up properly! I admit, I’m not the hugest fan of the boarding school settings…but maybe that’s because I haven’t read many good ones?! I should rectify that, right?
    Cait D recently posted..The Dark Side of Being an ARC Reviewer

    • You should totally rectify that!! What I loved about this one is unlike some of my other favs – like Vampire Academy etc, we don’t KNOW what is special/unique about Gottfried Academy, so that’s just another one of the mysteries she has to figure out! 😀

  2. I tried to read this book , but I couldn’t get into it. Thanks so much for your review.
    julie@my5monkeys recently posted..Unforgotten Book Review

    • Bummers you couldn’t get into it! I do think it gets better as you go along – the more you read the more you learn about the “world” and it gets even more intriguing, imo! 😀

  3. Boarding schools are a great setting, because it always makes me think back to Hogwarts! And that is still one of my favorite places 🙂 I like it when you slowly get to unravel information, it makes it always so mysterious! So I’m definitely interested to see what is going on with those two groups.
    Mel@thedailyprophecy recently posted..Author spotlight: Danielle L. Jensen.

    • I agree, Hogwarts was my first fav boarding school setting that I can remember! 😀 I think you’d really love this one! I’m a little ways into the second one and even more intrigued, it definitely takes a turn I didn’t expect!

  4. This book must have been fantastic if you spent $9 on the next book. 🙂 I’m glad to hear that you really enjoyed this one. I love boarding school books as well. 🙂
    Pamela D recently posted..Top Ten Tuesday Rewind: Top Ten Childhood Favorites

    • Yaya I’m glad I have someone else who loves boarding school books too! There is just something about them that’s cooler than regular school settings to me. haha I know, i NEVER spend that much on an ebook! I just HAD have it!

  5. Jaime Lester says:

    So glad you loved this one. I just finished reading it for the second time, and I think I enjoyed it more this time around. I just started Life Eternal, and I am already hooked! Yvonne Woon is such a talented writer, and her characters are so relate-able. I wish the series received the hype that it deserves!


  1. […] Yvonne Woon which I read and LOVED and am now reading the third book. You can read my review here. So for today’s […]

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