Half Bad (Half Bad Trilogy Series #1)

Half Bad (Half Bad Trilogy Series #1)

4.3 40
by Sally Green
     
 

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“An enthralling fantasy in the Harry Potter tradition.”— Time magazine

“A bewitching new thriller.” — The Wall Street Journal


In modern-day England, witches live alongside humans: White witches, who are good; Black witches, who are evil; and sixteen-year-old Nathan, who is both.

Overview

“An enthralling fantasy in the Harry Potter tradition.”— Time magazine

“A bewitching new thriller.” — The Wall Street Journal


In modern-day England, witches live alongside humans: White witches, who are good; Black witches, who are evil; and sixteen-year-old Nathan, who is both. Nathan’s father is the world’s most powerful and cruel Black witch, and his mother is dead. He is hunted from all sides. Trapped in a cage, beaten and handcuffed, Nathan must escape before his seventeenth birthday, at which point he will receive three gifts from his father and come into his own as a witch—or else he will die. But how can Nathan find his father when his every action is tracked, when there is no one safe to trust—not even family, not even the girl he loves?


In the tradition of Patrick Ness and Markus Zusak, Half Bad is a gripping tale of alienation and the indomitable will to survive, a story that will grab hold of you and not let go until the very last page.




From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

Nathan is a witch who lives in a modern-day England where witches live alongside humans, but even in his own community, he is an outsider. Nathan is a Half Code, the offspring of a white witch and a black witch. As such, he is tormented and abused; handcuffed or kept in a cage; beaten and encouraged to plot the murder of his father. He escapes, but his newfound freedom brings no relief, only the realization that he is being hunted by witches of every stripe. Sally Green's debut effort is already stirring excitement among teen readers in the know. Watch it rise on the hit lists.

Publishers Weekly
★ 12/23/2013
Nathan is the Half Code son of a White Witch and a Black Witch, and no White Witch will let him forget it. While Whites try to fit in amid normal "fains," secretly manipulating society, the Blacks are dangerous loners who, according to the Whites, have no purpose but murdering other witches to steal their powers. Nathan, whose father is Marcus—the most hated of Black Witches—falls in love with a White Witch girl, is taken into custody by the all-powerful Council, and, for years, is both tortured and trained in secret to murder his father. Then, just before Nathan's 17th birthday, he escapes, with only months to find someone to help him receive his own magical gifts. This grim and thrilling tale, first in a planned trilogy, features understated prose that lets readers' imaginations fill in the blanks, as well as a well-developed sense of Witch culture. Nathan, the damaged survivor of horrific abuse, is an unforgettable protagonist, and Green expertly captures his torment at being caught between the mutually hostile sides of his heritage. Ages 12–up. Agent: Claire Wilson, Rogers, Coleridge & White. (Mar.)
From the Publisher
Praise and accolades for Half Bad
 
"Highly entertaining and dangerously addictive."—Time Magazine
 
“Genuinely engaging.”—The New York Times
 
“Gripping.”—US Weekly
 
“Bewitching.”—The Wall Street Journal

“Captivating.”— Los Angeles Times

 "A page-turner."—The Boston Globe

"An epic journey."—D.J. MacHale, New York Times bestselling author of Pendragon and Sylo
 
"Brilliant and utterly compelling." —Kate Atkinson, New York Times bestselling author of Life After Life

"This will haunt you." —Marie Lu, New York Times bestselling author of Legend

"Edgy, arresting and brilliantly written." —Michael Grant, New York Times bestselling author of Gone

* "A thrilling tale . . . Unforgettable." —Publishers Weeklystarred review

* "Marvelous." —Bookliststarred review

* "A unique take on witches." —Library Media Connectionstarred review

A Spring 2014 Kids' Indie Next List pick

A 2014 Booklist Top 10 SF, Fantasy, and Horror for Youth

A Publishers Weekly Best Young Adult Book of 2014
 
Holder of two Guinness World Records
 
Optioned for film by FOX 2000
 
Rights sold in 50 international markets

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780698143760
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
03/04/2014
Series:
Half Bad Trilogy Series , #1
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
19,550
Lexile:
HL680L (what's this?)
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

     Kieran says, “You know what this is, Connor?”     Connor has to think about it, but eventually says, “A hunting knife.”     “Yes. To be exact, it’s a French hunting knife. They make great knives, the French.Look at that blade.’     I squirm and grunt and curse them.     ‘Hold him still, Niall. The blade folds away beautifully into the handle. Great design.The Swiss go for all the fancy gadgets in their knives, but all you need is a goodblade.”     I hear the rip of my T-shirt and feel the cool air on my back. I buck and curse again.     “Hold him still.”     I feel the blade brushing over my back and now I hold still. The knife stops in themiddle of my left shoulder blade. The point goes in.     “I’ll start here. This half is the Black half, I’d say.”     And slowly the blade cuts down my back.

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What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
Praise and accolades for Half Bad
 
"Highly entertaining and dangerously addictive."—Time Magazine
 
“Genuinely engaging.”—The New York Times
 
“Gripping.”—US Weekly
 
“Bewitching.”—The Wall Street Journal

“Captivating.”— Los Angeles Times

 "A page-turner."—The Boston Globe

"An epic journey."—D.J. MacHale, New York Times bestselling author of Pendragon and Sylo
 
"Brilliant and utterly compelling." —Kate Atkinson, New York Times bestselling author of Life After Life

"This will haunt you." —Marie Lu, New York Times bestselling author of Legend

"Edgy, arresting and brilliantly written." —Michael Grant, New York Times bestselling author of Gone

• "A thrilling tale . . . Unforgettable." —Publishers Weeklystarred review

• "Marvelous." —Bookliststarred review

• "A unique take on witches." —Library Media Connectionstarred review

A Spring 2014 Kids' Indie Next List pick

A 2014 Booklist Top 10 SF, Fantasy, and Horror for Youth

A Publishers Weekly Best Young Adult Book of 2014
 
Holder of two Guinness World Records
 
Optioned for film by FOX 2000
 
Rights sold in 50 international markets

Meet the Author

Sally Green lives in north-west England. She has had various jobs and even a profession but in 2010 she discovered a love of writing and now just can’t stop. She used to keep chickens, makes decent jam, doesn't mind ironing, loves to walk in Wales even when it's raining, and will probably never jog again. She really ought to drink less coffee. Half Bad is her first novel. 

Customer Reviews

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Half Bad 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 40 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'd like to begin my review by commenting that I haven't been so enraptured with a world of witchcraft and magic since I read J.K. Rowling's beloved Harry Potter septet. Now, don't misunderstand me, Harry Potter and Nathan Byrn are in no way similar to one another, and if you go into this novel expecting to visit the wizarding world of Harry Potter, I'm afraid you'll be thoroughly disappointed. Instead, this planned series offers an entirely different, and somewhat more sinister, world where Nathan is forced to endure pain and persecution inflicted on him by both family and foes alike for being something he had no choice in being, something he was born as: a halfcode. In short, I commend Sally Green on her debut novel and I eagerly await what she has in store for Nathan next. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book, was more than I expected because I am not much of a witches novel reader and I actually don't like reading them, but I gave myself the oppotunity to read Half Bad, and from the beggining got cought in it and was desperate to finish it and see how would it end. I recomend this book for all the people who want a good twist and adventure read. You can easily become the characters in the book, I was really touched by Nathan (the main character), I laughed with him and even cried with him. Books that can make you laugh or crie or make you think are the best books ever and this is one of them. I'm expecting the second book despretly and the third one too. Hope is as good as the first one. You won't regret reading Half Bad.
Anonymous 4 months ago
Love it with all my soul.
vampiregrl123 7 months ago
I had a lot of mixed feeling while reading this novel and even after finishing it. I picked up this book solely based on the cover of the novel. It was so pretty and normal the novels I pick up with pretty covers end up being great. This one was a bit of a disappointment. I enjoyed the world that Sally Green created a lot. I could picture it perfectly in my head while reading. I really like the lore she creates about the witches and the different types: White witches, Black witches, Hunters, and Gifts. The traditions and stories she creates are great as well. I didn’t mind the characters so much either. I thought that Nathan was intriguing, the son of a White witch and a powerful Black witch. Everyone looks down Nathan on because he is the product of a Black witch. He is discriminated upon because of something he can’t help. I felt for him. Annalise was a little iffy for me. I felt like she didn’t do much to help the story. I kept waiting for the whole “We can’t be together because we are completely different” storyline but it just wasn’t there. She felt boring to me. It was the pacing of the novel that got to me. The beginning of the novel wasn’t that bad but as it progressed it felt long and drawn out. I couldn’t connect to the story. I really wanted to but it just felt like I was being dragged along in a bad way. The climax was sorely disappointing. It didn’t feel like a climax at all, just another long, drawn out part of the story. Half Bad is not a bad novel at all it just didn’t impress me that much. While a lot of people don’t like cliffhanger endings, I feel like this one should have had one, especially since there are two more novels in the series. This review is not meant to sway anyone’s opinions or to tell you not to read the novel. This review is simply my opinion of a novel that was not executed as well as it could have been.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book will always be a favorite.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AvaJae More than 1 year ago
Okay, so I'll start by saying I haven't read a book about witches that I really loved since HARRY POTTER. Not that there aren't any out there (there are), but one hadn't really caught my interest until HALF BAD. Well. I was on the fifth page when I realized this was very likely going to be a new favorite. And I was right. First and foremost: THE VOICE. If you're a YA writer looking for a great example of powerful, immediate, raw voice, pick up this book immediately. Nathan's voice is so real and intense and I honestly could not have loved it any more. Secondly: the second-person POV. There are indeed sections of second person POV, including the opening, which I was pretty surprised to read. But holy wow, it worked so well! Ms. Green broke the rules on this one, and it really really worked. Now the characters and the plot. HALF BAD has you question right from the start who the good and bad guys are. There isn't a clear-cut this person is good, this person is bad element, which I absolutely adore because gray characters, to me, are so much more realistic and interesting than morally 100% good/evil characters. What made all of these even better was the pacing—even in the flashback sections that show us how Nathan ends up caged--are full of tension and conflict and events that had me racing through the book to find out what happens. Overall, I absolutely loved HALF BAD. It's now one of my favorites and I can't read to get my hands on the sequel, HALF WILD. If you like dark, intense YA Fantasy, I couldn't recommend this one any more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I have ever read! I am an avid reader and I just could NOT put this book down! A++++++++! I just pre ordered the sequal, I CAN NOT WAIT TO READ IT!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
After being dissapointed by many books this book was a welcome suprise, it is so well written and captivating
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The next book will come out on March 25, 2015, which is pretty disappointing, but now people who have not read it have some time to.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book!! When will the next one be for sale??? Hopefully not a year!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thoroughly enjoyed this book, I can't wait for the next one  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I finished it too quickly, truly a wonderful read. Very raw, but totally worth your time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A slow but intriguing start to a great series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very quick read and I love the story line. But the character just felt simple to me very cut and dry, and it wasn't until the end that I connect with the main character Nathan.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was completely immersed in the story through the whole book! I loved the storyline and the ending kept me wanting more!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
First saw this book advertised in Entertainment Weekly with great reviews. Read it without putting it down. AWESOME. Sally Green you have found your calling. Waiting patiently for the second of this trilogy.
EverAfterEsther More than 1 year ago
The story in Half Bad is one bursting with emotion and tension. The writing is thoughtful, and Nathan's character stayed with me long after I finished reading this book. Reasons to Read: 1. A story that simmers (slowly): The main character, Nathan, is absolutely filled with pent up emotions but the plot progression is fairly slow - don't expect action-packed excitement. Despite the external circumstances endangering Nathan, much of the story revolves around his internal struggles. I found that worked very well for the story in Half Bad, but you have to prepare yourself for a slow-moving plot. 2. Harry Potter (without Hogwarts): Let me explain what I mean by this: Half Bad is not at all the same story as Harry Potter. However, it felt to me like it could very well be set in a similar type of world - but not Hogwarts. Think of the United Kingdom where there are social divides between witches, and the magic is subtly woven into the real world. More like the later books in Harry Potter where the Ministry of Magic takes a more prominent role in the story. The way the magic works is interesting as well, because it isn't exactly something that can be learned but more like a skill inherited or gifted to the witch.  The story isn't quite told in chronological order though, and I found it jarring at times to jump around in the book's timeline. There were some ways in which it was effective and kept my focus narrowed on certain aspects of the plot. But overall, it felt mostly jumbled to me as a reader.  I was most confused by the second person narration used briefly on occasion. Second person narration is so hard for me to connect with as a reader! And it didn't feel like it added anything to the story. I had no problem relating to Nathan's character or his circumstances otherwise and the second person narrative was just confusing. And the use of this technique was so minimal, it seemed out of place. That being said, Half Bad is a remarkably emotive book. Sally Green's storytelling is beautiful, and she touches on a wide range of issues and feelings with it. I felt a complete connection to Nathan and I was fully invested in what happened to him. For that reason alone, I would recommend reading Half Bad along with the benefit of a curious magical world. This story is utterly heartbreaking and the events endured by Nathan are horrific and shocking - which is why his story has stuck with me.  ARC received from Penguin Canada for review; no other compensation was received. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Maybe. This is a very strong 1st book. It was quick paced and enjoyable throughout - no slow or boring parts at all. The characters were likable - especially Nathan himself. And the narrative was spot on. However - comparisons to Harry Potter are going to happen. And there are times that the book reads like a Harry Potter fan fic. - mostly within the first parts of the book. But it never felt like a 'copy'. Bottom line? One of the best YA books I've read post-HP and I'm looking forward to the 2nd book.
Gamergeekchick More than 1 year ago
This series has definite potential.  I'm a little miffed at where the first book left off but then again, cliffhangers always bring you back to read more. I am going to reserve any further judgement until I can finish the other(s) that have yet to come out because sometimes, an ending can ruin an entire series for me.  I do, however, have high hopes for this one!