The Faceless Ones by Derek Landy
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The idea that a "normal" girl, albeit one mentioned in a prophecy and possessing incredible strength and other powers, could be involved with some secret semi-monstrous group of Others has been done before (namely, Buffy). Of course, the living-skeleton-as-mentor hasn't been done before, and that's part of what sets this series apart.
Unfortunately, this third book in the series seemed far more serious, and far more violent, than the previous two. There were few moments of by-play, and those only served to set up the next fight scene. I would have liked to learn a little more about some of the newer characters, and perhaps to spend a little time with "Stephanie", Val's reflection - the contrast would have been interesting. There were a few brief moments of downtime but the rest seemed very rushed, as though the author didn't quite know how to slow down his plot effectively. Fewer fights, more exploration of the world, and some humor to relieve things would have made for a far better book.
I also wonder about the fact that there was a huge pile of ARCs available for this book. Usually by the third book in a series, ARCs are less freely available (in the Percy Jackson series, they'd stopped giving them out; ditto Harry Potter).
(Free ARC provided by publisher at ALA)