This is science fiction well and intelligently written, with solid internal consistency (written as former science nerd, this science is not shoddy! Phew - love it. It's imaginative - stretches the bounds - but stays just-plausible and internally consistent).
Evie is changing: she’s growing taller, more beautiful, stronger, bigger-boobed – like some kind of superwoman. Oops – it’s because she is! She’s got modified genes, due to a secret experiment that went wrong a couple of generations back, and now the different progeny tend to activate on exposure to each other in different ways. Some become Strays – evil assassins – and others Shields – protectors of the innocent – and some Sparks – innocent subject of the assassin’s obsession. Evie is a Shield, activated by her very own best friend Kitty, who turns out to be a Spark. So Evie’s job is to protect Kitty. But then of course it turns out there is a shadowy organisation in the background of all this mayhem, Affinity, and they’re very sinister and controlling. Evie’s life is no longer her own.
The plot thickens: Kitty’s twin brother Jamie, another Shield, is super-hot and has a history with Evie. Different kinds of sparks begin to fizz. Then all the familial relationships turn out to be far more complex than Evie understood – twins figure large (always a favourite plot device of mine!) And who is the assassin Stray after Kitty?
This is very well-written and a lot of fun to read. If I had to quibble, I would wish that Evie didn’t swoon quite so much – but that is explained by her super-charged developmental phase, so she should grow out of it. And what a gorgeous cover!
Great choice for curling up in an armchair on a rainy afternoon – whizzed through it and looking forward to book two!
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We read to escape, enjoy, engage, and find out more about our world. So reading is great - but what makes a great read? A page dedicated to short analyses of how writers engage readers.