Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

(Paranormalcy #1)
by Kiersten White

Weird as it is working for the International Paranormal Containment Agency, Evie's always thought of herself as normal. Sure, her best friend is a mermaid, her ex-boyfriend is a faerie, she's falling for a shape-shifter, and she's the only person who can see through paranormal's glamours, but still. normal.

Only now paranormals are dying, and Evie's dreams are filled with haunting voices and mysterous prophecies. She soon realizes that there may be a link between her abilities and the sudden rash of deaths. Not only that, but she may very well be at the center of a dark faerie prophecy promising destruction to all paranormal creatures.

So much for normal.

My review
First, I have to say that I was drawn to this book for one (albeit odd) reason. Not because of the cover art or the blurb, as neither were available on GoodReads when this book ended up on my TBR list. It's because Kiersten White spells her first name the same way as my little sister. Not many people spell it that way, so it's oddly exciting to see someone else do it too. Strange, but true.

I loved this book! If I hadn't had a 7 AM wake-up call, I would have finished it all in one sitting. Absolutely fantastic. Evie is such a great character. It's so easy to empathize with her, because she's always the odd girl out. Not really paranormal, but not a normal human either, Evie doesn't truly belong anywhere. She has an admirable inner strength yet still has flaws and limits, so she's not a supergirl as a lot of urban fantasy tales tend to make their heroines these days. Evie's ex-boyfriend, Reth, is a faerie - but not one of the cute Tinkerbell kinds. He's dangerous, even more so because no one believes Evie when she raises the alarm about his behavior. He's obviously manipulating her, but why, and for what? Then there's Lend, a shape-shifter who breaks into IPAC's office at The Center. Everyone thinks he's dangerous, but Evie is drawn to him. Probably because he's the only person not trying to boss her around.

The Center, Evie's home, was a nice touch. For anyone who remembers a 90s-era show called The Pretender, the corporation's hq was called The Centre, and they performed many strange experiments there, even holding the main character, Jarod, captive from his childhood well into his thirties - when he escaped - so they could exploit his genius for research and capital gains. It still is one of my favorite shows, so it was nice to see this idea parallelled in Paranormalcy. I'm sure all similarities are coincidental; however, this is one of my favorite concepts, and I so enjoyed seeing it in a new context.

Paranormalcy is definitely one of the best debut books of the year! It's a fresh and new concept, and the details, like Evie's pink taser, only add to its greatness. I hope you all enjoy the book!

The second book in the trilogy, Supernaturally, will be available next September. White also has an anthology coming out next week called A Visitor's Guide to Mystic Falls, which will be various authors contributing their opinion on the first season of The Vampire Diaries.

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