April 3, 2013

Review ~ The Athena Effect by Derrolyn Anderson

The Athena Effect (The Athena Effect, #1)

The Athena Effect (The Athena Effect #1)
By Derrolyn Anderson
Published August 30, 2012
221 pages
Genre ~ Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance 
My Copy ~ Kindle edition for review
Average Rating ~ 4.10 / 5.00
My Rating ~ 5.00 / 5.00
~Synopsis from Goodreads~
Country girl Cali has been kept a secret her entire life, raised in isolation by two very troubled people. Despite her parent’s disturbing fits, Cal is perfectly content, living at one with the nature that surrounds her, and finding adventure inside the pages of her beloved books. When an awful tragedy tears her away from her remote cabin in the woods, nothing she’s ever read has prepared her for a world that she knows very little about.

Girls and motorcycles are what bad-boy Cal’s life is all about. Brought up in a raucous party house by his biker brother, he’s free to do as he pleases, going through the motions on his final days of high school. Aimless, Cal stopped thinking about his future a long time ago.

Attacked by a gang of thugs while running an errand for his brother, Cal is in serious trouble until a fierce girl appears out of nowhere to intervene. She chases off three grown men, sparing Cal a brutal beating before disappearing into the night like a spirit. He can’t stop thinking about his mysterious rescuer, and when she turns out to be the weird new girl at school who goes out of her way to avoid him, he can’t contain his curiosity.

He’s never met anyone like her before, and the more he learns about the unusual girl who shares his nickname, the more he wants to know. Cal can’t help falling for Cal, but can he keep her from falling victim to a dangerous enemy from her parent’s tragic past?

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through the Goodreads group Never Too Old for YA Books. Wow! I can't stop thinking about this book even though I finished it three days ago. I need to buy a hard copy for my shelf because I'll be reading this over and over. I love this book! It's extremely well written - I was completely engrossed in the story, feeling like I was right alongside Cali, experiencing everything she experienced. I hated having to sleep. I'd tell myself, 'One more chapter, just one more chapter,' but that one chapter would turn into three or four more. :)

I was completely invested in the story and the characters. I could see why Calvin was living his life the way he did with all of his grief and bitterness bottled up inside. I could understand why Cali was so reluctant to spend time with Calvin, fearing he could never change. Cali had a lot to process for a girl her age - she has an ability she needs to keep secret, she's in danger but is unsure who poses a threat to her, she feels out of place after living in the wilderness away from other people for her entire life, and then she also has her grief.

Cali's ability begins developing and becoming stronger, changing in ways that surprised me (I won't give away how her ability changes, sorry lol). She can see colors around people based on how they're feeling, and I thought the author did a fantastic job showing Cali's ability rather than telling the reader about it - I felt like I was able to see the color of emotions, too. I loved how Cali was so strong but also had her vulnerable moments. Those moments made her so real and relatable.

Just when I thought I knew the extent of the evil intentions Dr. Reed was capable of, they became much much worse than I could have imagined. His plans are absolutely chilling!

An entire range of emotions were brought out in me, and I love it when a book can do that. My heart melted with the best swoon worthy moments I've read in a long time. During the times of danger, I'd find myself so into the action I thought my heart would burst out of my chest from the stress! I felt the sting of loss and grief right along with the characters. At times I forgot I was reading words - I was experiencing them, and that's exactly what a book should be able to do for its reader.

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About the Author
 Derrolyn Anderson
Derrolyn Anderson is a visual artist and writer. She is the creator of the four part "Marina's Tales" series,the YA/NA romantic suspense, "The Athena Effect" and its sequel, "The Mackenzie Legacy".
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