Saturday, November 13, 2010

Book Review: Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Vampires. Werewolves. Faeries. Hags. Banshees. Mermaids. Gremlins.

They're all real, but they're not what you think they are.

Evie is the only person, human or paranormal, who can see through glamours. Vampires, gorgeous? Yeah, right. Try shriveled, dried-out corpses. Gross. Evie's been working for the IPCA (International Paranormal Containment Agency) bagging and tagging paranormals since she was found in a graveyard at the age of 8, screaming at a vampire. Taken in and raised by the IPCA, her surrogate mom Raquel is the human director, her best friend Lish is a mermaid, her ex-boyfriend Reth is a faerie she can't trust, and her tutor is a werewolf. Still, some days all Evie wants is to know what it's like to have a locker and go to prom. Even if it means she'd have to give up Tasey - her pink, sparkly taser that really comes in handy when she's cornered by another leering vamp.

When shapeshifter Lend breaks into the IPCA looking for intel on a series of mysterious paranormal deaths, Evie sees through his disguise right away. She can't quite figure out what he is though - beneath the glamour he looks like water. The funny thing is, Lend can't figure her out either - he can't get her eyes quite right. He thinks there's something paranormal about her - but Evie knows she's human. Isn't she?

And then Evie discovers that she's part of a mysterious faerie prophecy that's linked to the recent paranormal murders. Except Raquel's too busy dealing with the murders to believe or even listen to Evie. Reth won't leave Evie alone, and Evie gets the feeling that his seductive persistance is more than just the usual faerie games. With Lend's help, Evie is determined to get to the bottom of the murders, her connection to the killer, and discover just who, and what, she is.

Paranormalcy is a fun, fast read that has just the right balance of dark mystery, snark, sweet romance, spine-tingling suspense, and action. If you're tired of reading books where the vampires are immortal, angsty and soulful and the heroines need to be a little (ok, a lot) more feisty and able to smack down some villains without their boyfriends, Kiersten White's debut novel is just what you're looking for!

(who should probably stock up on chocolate and caffeine before starting Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness, the final book of the Chaos Walking triology, this weekend - I have a feeling I won't be able to stop once I start!)