I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Emerge by Melissa A. Craven
Series: The Awakening,
Published by Midnight Hour Studio on April 1st 2015
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Fantasy
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook
Reading Challenges: 2015 Flights of Fantasy Reading Challenge
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
2015 International Book Awards Finalist!!
Allie Carmichael has always believed life is simple. You’re born. You live. You die.She has no cause to believe that equation works differently for her, but there has to be a reason the world treats her like a pariah.When an unexpected move to Kelleys Island brings Aidan McBrien crashing into her life, Allie is thrown by his reaction. He doesn’t shrink from her touch. He doesn’t stutter or make a quick exit. He smiles and welcomes her into his circle of friends, who aren’t exactly comfortable with Allie, but they seem to get her in a way most people don’t.Finally, Allie has a real shot at normal and rides that high right up to her sixteenth birthday when she wakes in agony—an experience Aidan insists they have all faced. She struggles in ignorance, uncertain of what is real and what isn’t. When she emerges, Allie is different. She has always been different, but even among her extraordinary friends, she and Aidan are special. As Allie struggles to maintain her tenuous grasp on the power that threatens to overwhelm her, she worries she will lose herself in this strange new world. A dangerous world where she will have to fight tooth and nail to defend the power and freedom that is her birthright. …only Allie hates to fight.
Author Melissa A. Craven’s new young adult, fantasy novel, Emerge, is a nice beginning to her brand new series The Awakening. The story is rife with strong bonds that transcend blood ties. Allie Carmichael is a strong heroine, mostly, who is likable and relatable. For most of her life she feels alone, as most people shy away from her touch. She spends most of her life completely clueless to why she gets this reaction, until her parents move her to Kelleys Island. Once there, Allie meets people she feels a connection with, and begins to know what it is to have true friends and a large family. It turns out Allie is special, and the people she meets are special, too.
One of my favorite aspects of the story was the relationships Allie forms with Aidan. Yes, these two could find a love-match sometime in the series, but despite any romantic feelings that may exist the two have a strong friendship built on trust and respect. Both are perfect together, but they also can stand on their own. Allie doesn’t need Aidan to be complete. Aidan and Allie aren’t the only strong characters. Emerge is full of strong male and female characters who support each other, and have healthy relationships. While I loved how the men and women were able to have strong friendships, I also loved how the women had great relationships with each other. There wasn’t the usual in-fighting between females over guys. No jealousy. I found this to be refreshing.
Craven does an excellent job building their wold, but at times resorts to info dumps to move the story along. Unfortunately, it is during these times that the story slows down to a crawl. I also found the info dumps to be a bit contradictory. There were times during the story where rules previously stated get forgotten. For instance, there were moments where Allie and her friends knew the identity of a previously unknown person out of nowhere. How Allie learns the new information is never relayed to the reader. I also found there to be a jerky feel to the story that made it read as if it were originally a script for an episodic television series. As I read there seemed to be places where I imagined commercial breaks could be placed. If this was intentional, or a figment of my imagination, I don’t know. Overall, I thought Emerge was entertaining to read, and I look forward to the sequel. I recommend this book to fans of fantasy and science fiction. Emerge has a bit of romance and teen angst, but it doesn’t overshadow the main plot.