Every genre has its pitfalls, its tropes that get repeated all too often. In YA, it’s an overdose of angst and the dreaded insta-love. SOME QUIET PLACE has a premise that not only eliminates even the possibility of those annoyances, but creates a protagonist that is utterly distinct–and all the more compelling for her uniqueness–from any other heroine the genre has produced.
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
One of the biggest problems with any thriller set in a futuristic utopia is how the main character will be able to slip through the cracks. When everything is automated, when everyone is organized, where are the fringes that accommodate those on the run? When Elissa’s “illness” is revealed to be something more terrible than she ever imagined, the scope of this story expands from “teenage suburbia” to “the galaxy”, and it wasn’t until that change kicked in that I was really on board.
If you love vampire YA, The Watchers is THE series to read. Danger, desire, and delicious mythology make each book better than the last. Drew has grown so much over the course of this series. She now wields her body as the weapon it is, and coupled with the genius level IQ that brought her to the vampire’s attention in the first place, she’s skilled and clever enough to find the upper hand in most of the dire situations she encounters in THE KEEP.
The Black City series takes place in a well conceived world fraught with political oppression reminiscent of the Nazi regime (except instead of persecuted Jews there are Darklings aka vampires) with a religious and political leader determined to restore racial purity by any means necessary. The idea of a Romeo and Juliet type romance is fantastic in theory too, but in execution, it unfortunately squanders the potential of this interesting world.
IMPOSTOR, the first book in Suzanne Winnacker’s Variant series, is kind of like a teenage Sydney Bristow from Alias meets X-Men’s Mystique. Tessa has been recruited to the FEA (Forces with Extraordinary Abilities) branch of the FBI. She’s been training for two years and honing her chameleon-like ability to take on the appearance of anyone she touches. At sixteen she gets her first mission tracking a serial killer.
Pure fun. That’s what Natalie Whipple’s TRANSPARENT is. Universal themes regarding identity and independence are explored alongside twisty fun supernatural abilities like flight, the protagonist’s invisibility, and all the way down to seemingly trivial powers like fear induced stink. More series issues arise thanks to Fiona’s crime lord father and ‘jobs’ he literally charms her into carrying out for him.
The first page of SCHOOL SPIRITS opens on Izzy in the middle of an attempt to stake a vampire. It’s a fun, clever scene with Izzy explaining how easy it is to kill a vampire, but that capturing one is another story, all while she is sitting on top of a vampire, and mentioning that a lot about vampires is “dorky.” It sets the tone for the rest of the book and pulled me right in. What stands out about SCHOOL SPIRITS is its lightheartedness and humor, making it an easy book to sit down with and breeze through.
Why isn’t this series a TV show yet? The CW? ABC Family? The Morganville Vampires is perfect for primetime. The cast of characters has expanded over the series without loosing focus on the core relationships, the setting of a vampire run college town is the perfect blend of chills and intrigue, and the storylines that Rachel Caine continues to spin are even hotter at book fourteen then they were at book one!
When I was first asked if I wanted to review THE CIRCLE my first thought was whether or not is a based on the TV show THE SECRET CIRCLE. Thanks to Google I found out that it was most definitely not based on the TV show – which was apparently based on a different series of books. Oops.
After being severely disappointed by the last few YA titles I’ve read, I started LIFE AFTER THEFT with some trepidation. My worry was unfounded as I found this book to be quite a treat.