Author: Maureen Doyle McQuerry
Series: Stand Alone
Source: ARC Netgalley
Published By: Amulet Books (May 1, 2012)
Genre: YA Fantasy
My Rating: 3 Stars
This dark and thrilling adventure, with an unforgettable heroine, will captivate fans of steampunk, fantasy, and romance.
On her 18th birthday, Lena Mattacascar decides to search for her father, who disappeared into the northern wilderness of Scree when Lena was young. Scree is inhabited by Peculiars, people whose unusual characteristics make them unacceptable to modern society. Lena wonders if her father is the source of her own extraordinary characteristics and if she, too, is Peculiar. On the train she meets a young librarian, Jimson Quiggley, who is traveling to a town on the edge of Scree to work in the home and library of the inventor Mr. Beasley. The train is stopped by men being chased by the handsome young marshal Thomas Saltre. When Saltre learns who Lena’s father is, he convinces her to spy on Mr. Beasley and the strange folk who disappear into his home, Zephyr House. A daring escape in an aerocopter leads Lena into the wilds of Scree to confront her deepest fears.
I was pretty interested in this book from the first time that I saw the cover and read the synopsis. It sounded like it would be something different and fun to read. Something unique than what is out there right now in the world of YA.
With those high hopes in mind, I was a little sad when this book started out so slow. I admit, I had to put this book down a few times and come back to it after reading something else for awhile.
Thankfully it did pick up a little and while it was still sort of slow it was very interesting, wondering about the mystery of where Lena came from exactly and what her father was and why he left.
I felt bad for Lena, having to put up with the superstitions and harshness of her grandmother as well as others that judged her by the appearance of her hands and feet.
I think if I had been in her same situation I would have done the same things she did, I would have searched for my father and his history so I could finally once and for all just know if the rumors about him were true. To know if she too were a Peculiar no matter what dangers met her long the way. And there are dangers and adventures and discoveries.
Unfortunately, I still struggled through this read even with all the adventures and dangers and discoveries. I think maybe this book just wasn't quite for me but, having said that, I could appreciate the uniqueness of it and do think people that enjoy fantasy a little more than I do would really enjoy it.