Book Review: Conjured by Sarah Beth Durst

20613812Title: Conjured

Author: Sarah Beth Durst

Format / Length: Paperback / 384 pages

Publisher / Date Published: Bloomsbury / September 16th 2014

Category / Genre: Young Adult / Paranormal, Horror, Fantasy, Romance

Source: Library

| Conjured on Goodreads|

Description: Eve has a new home, a new face, and a new name—but no memories of her past. She’s been told that she’s in a witness protection program. That she escaped a dangerous magic-wielding serial killer who still hunts her. The only thing she knows for sure is that there is something horrifying in her memories the people hiding her want to access—and there is nothing they won’t say—or do—to her to get her to remember.

At night she dreams of a tattered carnival tent and buttons being sewn into her skin. But during the day, she shelves books at the local library, trying to not let anyone know that she can do things—things like change the color of her eyes or walk through walls. When she does use her strange powers, she blacks out and is drawn into terrifying visions, returning to find that days or weeks have passed—and she’s lost all short-term memories. Eve must find out who and what she really is before the killer finds her—but the truth may be more dangerous than anyone could have ever imagined.


Conjured was one hell of a confusing novel. But I liked it.

Interestingly enough, in the author’s acknowledgements, she thanks her dreams — which I thought was awesome. I mean, creating a whole novel from a dream? COOL. But . . . in saying that — yes, this was a weird novel. And I can so see how, after reading this novel. You know when you wake up from an exceptionally weird dream, but it’s still all fuzzy, and confusing, and a little bit WTF? Well, yeah. That pretty much sums up this novel. And funnily enough, that’s what I liked about this novel.

Even though, admittedly, it left me feeling a little bit like this:

But, okay, I’m going to list some of the other things I liked.

  1. I loved the author’s writing style. Beautiful, and lyrical, and descriptive — and I loved it.

  2. THE STORYLINE. Magical, fierce . . . and hella creepy, too, at some points.

  3. The love interest! HE. WAS. GREAT. Zach spurted off random facts in a hilarious and loveable manner. I wasn’t too fond of his and the main character’s love story, but I’ll get to that later. Zach though, was fantastic.

Alas, I didn’t adore this novel like I SO wanted to. It was good, but there were a couple of elements of the novel which didn’t a) suit me and my reading style, or b) was not explained to my satisfaction.

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  1. Our main character was . . . distant. WHICH IS FINE. I get it! She doesn’t really know who she is . . . but then again that makes her a tough character to connect with, right?

  2. The romance. It was sweet, don’t get me wrong! I like sweet guys. And sweet romance. But I don’t know, it just didn’t really like it all that much. Whenever the novel shifted its focus from the main storyline I just wanted to switch it back. I liked the creepy, fantastical element to the story — not the romance.

  3. THAT. ENDING. Um, okay? I read this at one in the morning so perhaps I missed something, but it was just WEIRD. (Hence the whole, you know, being inspired by a dream, I guess.)

So overall, I liked it! Just not amazing for me.

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Have you read Conjured? I’d love to discuss it below! And if you’re a writer . . . have you ever written a novel based off a dream?!

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8 thoughts on “Book Review: Conjured by Sarah Beth Durst

  1. So I just read the blurb (which I hardly ever do) AAAAND yeah, it sounds creepy :P Buttons sewn into skin?? okay O_O

    Buuuuuuut dreams can be very powerful. Twilight was created from a dream, wasn’t it? I’ve had some really strange dreams, but only one has made it into a book. I was really high in the air and swinging back and forth, except there was no swing. Pretty cool. Made it into my Alice in Wonderland retelling :P

  2. Haha I was creeped out by the cover so I passed it onto Alana for review. I always get weird ass dreams and I’ve been meaning to start a dream diary to record them, so I think it’s so cool that the author was able to remember so much and be able to write a whole book off her dreams. I get why you may feel distant to the main character, but yay for a nice love interest for once!

  3. Ooh, I’m in the process of writing a novel out of a dream (it’s kind of creepy, but then again the human brain is freakin’ awesome…).

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