Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Unleashed is the first novel in a new YA supernatural series called Wolf Spring Chronicles, co-written by Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie.
Though sixteen-year-old Katelyn McBride is devastated, she can't find the energy to fight it when her grandfather insists she move to a small town in Arkansas to live with him when Katelyn's mother dies. The mixture of the shock of being an orphan so suddenly and the guilt that lingers in her over her drugged, helpless state at the time of her mother's death (a painkiller prescribed by her gymnastics coach) has left her semi-catatonic.
She's only partially aware of the fact that moving away from California is also taking her away from her best friend, her life, and all of her big hopes and plans for a future of dance and gymnastics - something she's been training for, for years. Once the reality of it does come crashing down on her, her grief expands.
For now, though, she's stuck trying to start over in Wolf Springs. Katelyn soon finds some distraction from her mourning as the inhabitants of the town seem odd and secretive. And it doesn't take long to find out that it might not be the safest of places... a girl her age was found dead in the woods recently - apparently the deed of a wild animal.
This is a place of longtime roots, grudges, century-old families, forbidden love, and perhaps sinister intentions. Maybe even something... not entirely human.
And now Katelyn McBride is in the thick of it.
Unleashed is a very entertaining and magnetic novel - and I can tell you right now that I'm glad it's the first in a series!!!
There is certainly a sadness to Unleashed as poor Katelyn misses her Mom. I felt for her very quickly. But her new home in Arkansas with her grandpa is certainly spooky and full of unspoken mysteries and danger. We've got hot guys, creepy occurrences, and secrets galore that had me whipping through pages!
Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie have supplied a fun, blockbuster-feel book with weird, suspicious families, bizarre animal attacks, and an oddly standoffish vibe from her new friends that puts Katelyn in a lonely, relatable situation. I liked that they took the time to make me care about our main character, but never really slowed down the plot of Unleashed - it kept moving.
A horror story fusion with supernatural romance = awesome collaboration! Unleashed is the kind of story that envelopes you and whisks you away with it - pure escapism entertainment! Plus, there's a sweet family element and bits of humor that balance out the overall intensity and secretive nature of the book.
And I always appreciate sneaking in a little Shakespeare - and I don't think it's just me when I say there's a creative twist on King Lear in here... Very cool!
Unleashed is certainly suspenseful and scary - so of course how else could they finish the book but a cliffhanger?
I definitely want more. Now.
And I'm guessing most of you will want the same thing...