Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Calling by Kelley Armstrong

Genre:  YA Paranormal Fantasy
Darkness Rising Series, Book 2

Note:  Please read The Gathering before reading the description for this one.  And please be aware, my review is going to contain what some would consider a spoiler.  So don't read my review if you want to be completely surprised (but you probably should've caught on in the first novel anyways).

Description (taken from Kelley Armstrong's website):
Maya Delaney’s paw-print birthmark is the sign of what she truly is—a skin-walker. She can run faster, climb higher, and see better than nearly anyone else. Experiencing intense connections with the animals that roam the woods outside her home, Maya knows it’s only a matter of time before she’s able to Shift and become one of them. And she believes there may be others in her small town with surprising talents.

Now, Maya and her friends have been forced to flee from their homes during a forest fire they suspect was deliberately set. Then they’re kidnapped, and after a chilling helicopter crash, they find themselves in the Vancouver Island wilderness with nothing but their extraordinary abilities to help them get back home. Plentiful action and romance in this second installment in the Darkness Rising series will keep readers enthralled to the last page.

Note:  I tried hard to remain spoiler-free but failed...

Honestly, I don't really remember the little details from the first book.  Yes, I remember the main characters:  Maya, Rafe, Daniel, Nicole, Sam, etc.  Yes, I remember the main theme and how the first one ended.  But the subtle details and connections that were forming, yeah I can't recall those.  So, this book didn't really feel like a true second for me.  And I quite enjoyed this one.

First off, we're not going to see much of Rafe in this book.  Which was a total downer for me because I remember liking him in the first one.  But the awesome friendship between Daniel and Maya?  It's awesome, and I'm so happy to finally see a novel that doesn't have a love triangle and actually emphasizes the guy friend without the boyfriend material.  (Cue record ripping noise.)  Wait a second, I must not have read that far into the second book.  Yeah, once I finished it, I had to amend my thoughts.  Things started clicking, and I realized like Maya, I had not picked up on the subtle hints and clues.  And if you haven't figured it out, go read the book (I'm sorry, but I don't think I can spell it out for you - and who knows, I might be wrong with my assumption anyways).

But what I really loved was the mystery behind the characters' developing powers.  We don't even find out what all of them are (which kind of left me hanging).  And woah, I could gush and gush about these powers, but I glued my mouth shut to keep me from ruining it for you.  And how things from the first novel tie into this one.  Oh, and things from Kelley Armstrong's first YA series also tie into this one.  And the fact that we're in the same world as her adult Women of the Otherworld series (I should stop while I'm ahead).

Anyways, Kelley Armstrong is one of my favorite authors.  And I believe her books will keep you entertained.  However, if you're like me, you may want to wait until the whole series is out before reading them.  Otherwise, you forget the minor details.  Definitely recommend this book for paranormal fans out there...

Challenges:  Sensational Seconds and Young Adult Reading Challenge

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