Author: Becca Ritchie
Details: Paperback, 384 pgs.
Published: Oct. 19th, 2008 by Outskirts Press
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: Author *for review*
Four hundred years ago a creature descended upon the Earth. The supernatural hunted innocent lives wanting blood and vengeance. Two families, the Wynters and the Chelseas, knew of the darkness that reigned over the world. For thousands of years they hunted and killed to protect those who knew nothing of the dangers.
Amanda Chelsea vies to be a part of the Wynter Chelsea legacy, constantly craving the thrill of a lifetime that her older brother, Jack, and the two Wynter boys experience. At seventeen, Amanda’s passion to fight is overwhelming, and she cannot come to grips with why the boys are protecting her. Abilities are cast upon the new generation of Wynters and Chelseas, only in hopes of guiding them to vanquish the impenetrable creature. Even as Amanda Chelsea receives the power of empathy, feeling other people’s emotions, it brings more harm than a vital potency. Through the turmoil in New Jersey, Dustin Wynter is the only one able to relate to Amanda with a similar gift. As Jack’s rage boils over the edge, Dustin must put the pieces back together and hold the legacy up with a shaking arm and a quirky brother by his side.
When the world couldn’t seem to become anymore dangerous, both parents of each family go missing. Now with no choice but to bring Amanda along, she finally is able to fight without hassle, but is it worth it? Is the disappearance of the ones she loved a price that she has to pay for her dream to join the legacy? Traveling across the United States, the four young adults must confront their hidden emotions and ultimate reason for living.
Wynter Chelsea is a novel about finding truth in oneself and truth in the world amid the darkness that follows. Readers of the young adult genre will connect with Amanda’s coming of age story, where life seems to be at the tip of her fingers but she can’t hold on to it. Wynter Chelsea has a spark of comedy with Trevor Wynter and love with the bubbling young romance of Amanda and Dustin. With a strong sense of love, loss, and sacrifice, Wynter Chelsea connects the sentiment of the reader to the page. When the reader closes the novel, their heart will surely be left within the lines.
This was definitely a book that sucks you in and brings out the emotions full force! It was a creative take on a supernatural story with many unique ideas. I like that the author wasn't afraid to create something new. What is hard for an author is making it believable. Yeah, we may know that these creatures aren't real, but an author needs to be able to convince us that it is real. And while I may have thought a few things far fetched for the most part I was sucked into the story enough that I could go along with her ideas and the way this world was.
I liked Amanda, the main character, most of the time and I think I connected with her well enough through the majority of the story. There were a few things that irritated me though. She was a bit angsty. I mean, she had reason to be angsty, but I think she overdid it a bit. And at a certain point near the end of the book she just went a bit too far and that made me angry. I think I wasn't quite connecting with why she was feeling those extremes, but she's an empath, so she's feeling everyones feelings around her. So maybe I was just having a hard time understanding how hard it really was.
The boys in her life, her brother Jack, and their 'friends' Dustin and Trevor are interesting enough characters but I didn't really like Jack and Trevor. Jack was too full of anger and Trevor just didn't really have much compassion in him. And while he was the funny guy I just wasn't feeling him. But Dustin, I really liked him and liked the connection that him and Amanda have.
The parents weren't really around enough to like or dislike them but I can say I did NOT like Killian (the father of Dustin and Trevor). He's one person that really got my blood boiling. He was suppose to be that way, that was his character, and the author did a fabulous job getting me riled!
The story line was great and kept me pulled in and the overall feel of the book, even with the negative things that bothered me, was that I really liked it. Becca wrote this as a teen and she certainly did a fabulous job. I look forward to reading the next one, The Sublimity.
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Disclosure: I received a copy of the book free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own and I was not paid or influenced in any way.