Friday, July 23, 2010

Fantasy Friday: Manifest

Manifest, by Artist Arthur

Published by: KimaniTru (Harlequin) (ARC)
Pages: 256
Reading Level: 14 and Up
Enjoyment Level: Medium-High

I’m very excited to review this book mainly because it’s one of the first imprints that (looks like it) will be exclusively for African American main characters in the teen market. I was more than happy to read the book and I was pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed it as much as I did.

From the publisher:

Fifteen-year-old Krystal Bentley is royally miffed. Why her mom had to divorce her dad and drag her from New York City to the middle-of-nowhere Connecticut is beyond her. She's never lived outside of The City and doesn't know what to expect. But there's one thing she never could have expected: the cute dead boy standing in her bedroom asking for help.

As she juggles being the new girl, resisting the requests of Ricky, the transparent dead boy, to find his killer, and dodging the demands of every other ghost on the planet, she can barely find time to hate her mother's new husband.

When she begins to think it's all too much, she finds comfort in a bizarre friendship with Sasha, a disappearing socialite and Jake, the telekinetic boy from the wrong side of the tracks. They both bear the same M shaped birthmark as her and the alliance of their powers seems to have a history that dates back to the 1700s.

But what are their powers for? Can they be used to get themselves out of the dangerous mess they're currently in, or will they prove to be more dangerous than anything they've ever imagined?

I did have some trouble seeing this character in my mind sometimes, but her reactions did feel natural to me. The author didn’t change Krystal’s attitude immediately just because she found out she had some new powers, which was nice to see. Often in YA, I feel like the characters don’t develop out of their depression in a way that makes sense. Krystal grew up in the right time and place. She may not be easily relatable to some readers, but she’ll be especially understandable for anyone who’s gone through parents’ divorce.

This also felt to me more like an exploration of character, rather than plot. There is a plot, definitely, but the mysteries are few and far between up until the last few chapters. I can’t even really say that I found a lot of places I felt were foreshadowing. The mystery of the birthmarks didn’t feel like part of the plot, either, but like the introduction of an overarching idea for the series.

So it’s not the plot that kept me reading. Not really. The mystery of the kids and their birthmarks overshadowed everything, and that, along with Krystal’s development made it all interesting. And I liked the resolution found for Krystal and her parents. The mystery of her new ghost friend’s death ended the book nicely and showed the three kids coming more into their powers.

Manifest will be out in stores August 1, 2010. Fans of fantasy will enjoy the urban quality and interesting premise. I definitely suggest picking this one up!

Until next time, go read something!

~ Vilate

1 comment:

  1. 與人相處不妨多用眼睛說話,多用嘴巴思考. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .