Review of The Eternal City by Paula Morris

TheEternalCityThe Eternal City
By: Paula Morris
Release Date: May 26th 2015
Publisher: Scholastic
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

My Rating:

Laura Martin is visiting Rome on a class trip, and she’s entranced by the majestic Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon. . . . Everything in this city seems magical.

That is, until the magic seems to turn very dark.

Suddenly, statues of Cupid and ancient works of art come to life before her eyes. Earthquakes rumble and a cloud of ash forms in the sky. A dark-eyed boy with wings on his heels appears and gives her a message. Laura soon realizes she is at the center of a brewing battle — a battle between the gods and goddesses, one that will shake modern-day Rome to its core.

Only she and her group of friends can truly unravel the mystery behind what is happening. As tensions mount and secret identities are revealed, Laura must rely on her own inner strength to face up to what may be a fight for her life.

My Thoughts:
This was the first book I’ve read from Paula Morris and so I really didn’t know what to expect. The writing was easy to read and I was excited by the idea of the setting being in Rome. Some part of me, based on a vague recollection of the summary, thought our main character, Lauren, would be traveling back in time. I only briefly read the summary before requesting this one and when it arrived I jumped in without refreshing my memory. I kept waiting for something to drag Lauren back through time but that didn’t occur. Instead, things happened in present day.

Though this book proved to be a fast read it wasn’t overly enjoyable mostly due to my disconnect to the characters. They each felt rather flat to me especially our lead, Lauren.  She never felt more than two dimensional. We read about her attachment and past with her grandfather but I never felt it. Sadly, I never felt any of the emotions she was described as feeling. There was a tiny bit of romance and even that felt meh to me.

The setting was beautifully described and it did seem easy to picture what was happening around Lauren and her friends. I really enjoyed the visuals of a modern day Rome being overrun with statues (did seem a little Jumanji esq.) As for the big mystery about why the mayhem is occurring it wasn’t overly difficult to figure out. Little tips led me easily to predict what was coming which did detract a tiny bit.

Final Thoughts:
Regardless of my disconnect to the characters and the predictability, Paula Morris’ writing was engaging and I had no problem finishing The Eternal City. It wasn’t a book I regretted reading and I felt that I did derive some enjoyment from the story, especially the setting.


  1. says

    Aw, sad face 🙁 I’m so sorry that this book was so disappointing. It looks so pretty, though. But yeah, characters doesn’t sound that good :\ And aw, getting disappointed by the plot is never any fun. But you are awesome for finishing it 🙂 I never wanted to read it, okay, I haven’t even read the summary before, but now I won’t read it, hih 🙂 Thank you for sharing about it Kristen. <3

  2. says

    Hmm. I read Morris’s Dark Souls when it came out and wasn’t a big fan because of flat characters who read very young. I’m sorry to hear this book suffered from the same issue but at least it was a fun read in spite of that.

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