Set against the backdrop of a dystopian London where thugs and criminals run rife, Skye Archer possesses a rare gift, the ability to transform into her spirit animal at will. Widely regarding her morphing ability as a curse, Skye’s aim is to keep it a secret at all costs. But one day she meets the intriguing and affluent, Raphael Renzo, who soon proves to have a secret of his own, one that could heal the downtrodden city and affect Skye in ways she never thought possible…
This debut Young Adult Paranormal Romance novel from Sarah Brownlee is a compelling and gripping read, taking the reader into a world where both the heart of a city and the heart of a girl are simultaneously pierced by one man.
**Thank you to the author for a complimentary copy of this title in exchange for an honest review**
I’m not generally a YA reader, but look at that cover! It would take someone with stronger principles than I to refuse that cover!
Skye, the main character, lives in a version of London 200 years in our future. Society has changed and though some things have changed for the better (the technology and emergency services are really cool), there is a sense of lawlessness in the city. The only thing standing between London and full scale riots is the uneasy truce between the Renzo and Pearson families.
Skye herself is a moody, emotionally constipated whingebag of a wolf morpher, but I can hardly hold it against her – we’ve all had our off days and we don’t have the ability to turn into animals.
One day, she’s attacked by a group of thugs on the street – led by the son of the Pearson family. Thankfully, Raphael Renzo steps in to save the day. From this point on, Skye has a close up view of how tenuous the peace is in the city.
Obviously the two are desperately attracted to each other, this is a YA novel after all! I did find myself getting a bit irate with how much time and energy they wasted denying their feelings for each other when they have no apparent obstacle keeping them apart.
I love the original concept of the novel, I wouldn’t even call it entirely dystopian at this stage because shit hasn’t gone down yet. The world is well developed and the society is amazing, Morphers are people with the genetic ability to change into their inner beast as a result of an experiment performed 200 years ago. It’s a recessive trait and very rare in the world, however most Morphers suffer persecution and will be immediately executed for attacking a regular human. It’s just another form of racism and seems particularly relevant this year, I can’t wait to see what the rest of this series is going to be like!
While reading this book, I did get a strong sense of ‘debut novel’ as some parts were repeated and a lot of the text could be whittled down so that what was left made more of an impact but the ideas and characters more than make up for this.
If you like YA paranormal romance (like regular paranormal romance but without the boobies) or even standard paranormal fiction but you’re looking for something a little bit different from the usual, I can’t recommend this book enough!