Monday, July 23, 2012
Grasping at Eternity, by Karen Amanda Hooper
I just finished this book last night, so I technically can't tell you exactly how long the afterglow lasts, but I was so surprised by how much I liked this book, I wanted to write about it right away. That sounds weird, so let me clarify. Karen is a friend of mine. We blog together at YA Confidential. I went into this book knowing I would at least enjoy it a little bit, because I know Karen's a fine writer, but to be honest, I was under the assumption that I wasn't going to like it as much as her last book, Tangled Tides. I don't know why, exactly, but I expect it had to do with my own preference for Fantasy over Paranormal/Supernatural.
Now, I'm not going to sit here and tell you that either of these books fits neatly into those categories, because they don't, but I will admit that I started reading Grasping at Eternity with the misguided assumption that I wasn't going to like it as much as I had liked Tangled Tides.
So, now that I've gone on rambling for a few hundred words about all the hang-ups I brought into reading this book, let me just say: I really enjoyed it. I don't know what the marketing experts would call it, but they might say it's a YA Paranormal Romance, and while I wouldn't completely agree, I also wouldn't be able to prove them wrong.
What I really loved about this book was the unique scenario Karen set up to provide the utmost tension between her two main (which are also both POV) characters. I don't want to give too much away, but suffice to say both Nathan and Maryah are more than just your average human teenagers. But, the cool thing is that Karen created a dynamic in which Nathan is aware of their ... special status, and Maryah is not. I can see how this could have easily led to some cringe worthy writing (and I don't mean awkward moments between characters), but it was done so well it left me rooting for both of them the entire way.
Sure, Maryah makes some poor decisions, but you can't even begin to blame her because she is basically 95% ignorant of the truth for 80% of the book. Anyway, I could go on in more detail, but it's easier to just recommend this book as a great YA PNR.
Both Karen Hooper's novels are the first in a series, so be sure to keep an eye on her as her career continues. You can find more of Karen:
At her blog
At her website