Friday, 8 March 2013

Review - Forsaken by Jana Oliver

By Jana Oliver
Macmillan Children's Books, 422 pages
Published: February 7th 2011

"Riley Blackthorne.
Kicking hell's ass one demon at a time...

Riley has always wanted to be a Demon Trapper like her father, and she's already following in his footsteps as one of the best. But it's tough being the only girl in an all-guy world, especially when three of those guys start making her life more complicated:

Simon: the angelic apprentice who has heaven on his side; Beck, the tough trapper who thinks he's God's gift, and Ori, the strikingly sexy stranger who keeps turning up to save her life.

One thing's for sure - if she doesn't keep her wits about her there'll be hell to pay..."

- from the book

4.5 out of 5

From the blurb, this book would probably be billed as a paranormal romance. It is in part, but that's not remotely the focus of the tale.
As a girl fighting demons in a man's world, Riley Blackthorne already has a fight on her hands trying to prove she's good enough, but when a routine capture goes wrong, Riley is started on a path that will soon have her world spinning out of control.

I fell in love with the characters in this book. Each one has their own distinctive personality, which blend seamlessly together to create a fantastic ensemble cast.
Riley has a 'never give up' attitude which has you wanting her to succeed from the word go. She isn't afraid to stand up for what she believes in, or fight for what she wants. She goes through a lot in this book alone, and you can't help but feel for her. Eventhough she is a very contained character, when she lets her emotions show, it's thrilling and heartbreaking at the same time. She shows such incredible strength throughout that you can't help but admire and be inspired by her.

As stated in the blurb, Riley has several love interests in this book, some of whom were a little less impressive than others. Let me start with Beck. Oh Beck. I loved you, I hated you, which only made me love you more. He is an incredibly complex character, who feels highly protective of Riley, and although he constantly keeps her at arms length and pushes her away often, there are emotions there under the surface that you will be begging to explode. He has hidden, sensitive depths and I can't wait to read more about him. His POV sections were some of my highlights of the book, as they allow us to see both Beck & Riley in a completely different (and highly illuminating) light.
Simon on the other hand. Well, there was just something about him that didn't sit well for me. Yes, he was sweet and charming, and obviously cares for Riley, but I couldn't in all honesty, figure out the big attraction to him. Their relationship felt almost rushed, and I didn't feel myself as drawn to him as Riley appears to be, and as perhaps I should've been.

This book definitely has a feel of the tv show Supernatural about it, which was not a problem for me, because I love that show. It has appeal for adults as well it's target YA audience, because it's a bit grittier than your average YA novel.
I loved the fresh take on demons & how the humans of the book interact with them, showing a world that is tough and slightly mercenary, but which has it's bright spots too.

Thrilling and action packed, I would definitely recommend this book, and I cannot wait to read the rest of the series.


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