Author: Kelly Keaton
Series: 1st in Gods & Monsters
Published: February 22, 2011 from Simon Pulse
Description: Her search for answers uncovers just one message from her long dead mother: Run. Ari can sense that someone, or something, is getting closer than they should. But it’s impossible to protect herself when she doesn’t know what she’s running from or why she is being pursued. Ari can’t help feeling lost and alone. With teal eyes and freakish silver hair that can’t be changed or destroyed, Ari has always stood out. And after growing up in foster care, she longs for some understanding of where she came from and who she is. She knows only one thing: she must return to her birthplace of New 2, the lush rebuilt city of New Orleans. Upon arriving, she discovers that New 2 is very...different. Here, Ari is seemingly normal. But every creature she encounters, no matter how deadly or horrifying, is afraid of her. Ari won’t stop until she knows why. But some truths are too haunting, too terrifying, to ever be revealed.
I Give This ...
I'm hoping by the end of my thoughts on this book, I will have a firmer grasp on what to rate it. And since my biggest problem with it seems to be not as much of an issue in the final copy, I'm really struggling with it.
I really wasn't sure what to think of Ari from the very start. She's a much more hardened character than you normally see in young adult. Her mother handed her over to the state when she was 4, and she's been in and out of various foster homes, etc since then. She's presently has a pretty good home situation, but I don't think it's helped with her attitude. Having spent the last of your teenage years with bounty hunters might do that to a person. Upon learning that her mother committed suicide 6 months after leaving her, she feels the need to go to New 2 to try and piece together her past. This in spite of the warning in the note her mother left her telling her to run.
I liked the descriptions of New 2, the events that lead it to it's current state, and the people who currently inhabit it. It just really fit were the story was going. I liked how the city was ruled by the 9 founding families and how each family had "unique" abilities. It was really a different take on how the paranormal can become part of the story. I was just itching to learn who/what Ari really was. I should have really listened to my thoughts at the beginning of the story. For some reason I completely dismissed them until the facts were staring me straight in the face. I really enjoyed that. I loved the twist on mythology that I was not expecting to be a part of the story.
In fact, I really liked the entire story, so I'm back to giving it a 4 rating after initially giving it a 3. What caused me to give it that in the first place? The profanity. I thought perhaps that the main character dropping the f bomb on the first page was just a fluke and that it wouldn't be scattered throughout the rest of the story. I was wrong, and it was a real turnoff. But, I've since learned that a lot of that profanity was removed in the final copy. It made me feel a lot better about giving it a higher rating!