34 kids missing. Vanished without a trace.
Believing she is possessed, Genie Magee's mother has imprisoned her all summer encouraged by the sinister Reverend Schneider. Beautiful Rian, love of her life, sets her free, and their escape washes them up at Marshall's remote farmhouse downriver. But why are there newspaper clippings of the missing kids pinned to Marshall's bathroom wall? And should they believe his stories about the experiments at the Fortress, an underground research station nearby?
Genie meets Denis. Missing two years now, but hasn't grown an inch. Rian is haunted by Renée, who insists she's not actually dead. Soon they discover the terrible truth about Reverend Schneider and worse, Genie is next ... and Rian can't do a thing to prevent it.
The Repossession is just the beginning.
However, what the book actually turned out to be, was more a science fiction thriller. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's just that I had expected something a little different to what I actually received.
The premise of the novel is a really interesting one. It's set in Spurlake - a small town in Canada, where 34 children have mysteriously gone missing, over a period of a couple of years or so.
The story kicks off with Genie, the female protagonist, being locked in her room and aaccused of being the devil, by her own mother, for displaying a 'gift' (which is the fantasy element that I mentioned above. This isn't really mentioned much, past the beginning of the book, though). While locked away in her room, a face appears on her wall - that of the latest child to go missing from the town - who warns her that she is next. At this point, her boyfriend, Rian, breaks her out of her makeshift prison, and together they attempt to escape Spurlake, only to end up at a farm, a few miles outside of town.
At the farm, they meet Marshall; an ex-scientist, who used to work for the Fortress, and with him, they begin to discover exactly what has happened to the missing children, but in doing so, put themselves in the line of fire.
Obviously I'm not going to tell you any more, seeing as saying more could potentially lead me to tell you something that the various synopsis' online don't tell you, but the idea behind what has happened to the children, is a really interesting one, and it definitely piqued my interest.
This interest was also held throughout most of the rest of the book. I did find myself skim reading a little somewhere around the middle of the book, but apart from that, I was keen to carry on reading and find out what would happen next. It was also really well-paced all the way through - so there weren't any parts of it that were too slow, or too racy - the pace was just right for what was happening, and every page took the plot somewhere new.
However, I did have a couple of problems with the book (one I can't mention due to spoilers). The first, and largest problem, was Rian and Genie's relationship. We don't actually get to see their relationship develop at all. We're just informed through Genie, at the beginning of the book, that they found each other, fell in love, and would suddenly do anything for each other - In Rian's case, this included pulling an entire window out of a brick wall, to get Genie out of her bedroom, and then quit school to run away with her. Nothing about this felt natural, or even realistic to me, and I just didn't believe in their relationship at all.
Saying that, though, I did grow accustomed to it, later in the book, but I had to try hard to ignore my doubts about just how realistic they were, both as characters, and as a couple.
However, despite my problems with the book, I did want to continue reading to find out what would happen next.
I would want to say more about the plot, because the idea behind the technology in the book was pretty good, and definitely makes it worth reading - as does the evil corporation behind the technology - but I can't really say any more than this, because the synopsis doesn't explicitly reveal what it is, and I wouldn't want to spoil anything, for anyone.
Take it from me, though; the revelation about what is going on, is really exciting!
As for the characters, I've already mentioned what I think about the two protagonists, but there are characters in the book that I did really like.
For me, the best character was Marshall, but not because I liked him any better than the others - he just felt much more realistic to me. He used to be a scientist, working on the experiments at the Fortress, before the children began to go missing. However, after an accident, that caused him to lose one of his legs, he was retired to the farm, at the edge of the Fortress' property.
When the children begin to go missing, he is convinced that the Fortress have something to do with it. His character begins to feel more real to me, when he, Genie and Rian, discover evidence of what is going on beyond the Fortress' walls.
Marshall is then caught between his sense of morality (he knows and feels that what they are doing is wrong, becomes angry, and looks to help stop them), and a feeling of great excitement, at the prospect of the scientific breakthrough that has been achieved. This is exactly how I would expect his character to react, had he been a real person, and so he becomes much more believable, because of this.
Overall, I did really enjoy this book. It was fast-paced and exciting, and the premise was really interesting. However, at times, I wish that it had felt a little more natural, rather than like it was being forced along.
I was interested enough in the story, to want to continue reading, though, and I definitely want to find out what happens in the next book, The Hunting (the ending was particularly exciting)!
So overall, an entertaining read, but nothing overly special. I would probably recommend this to younger teen readers, as I think they'd get more out of it that I did, as an adult reading YA, but it is still light, easy and entertaining for any fan of YA fiction.
And now for more excitement - an international giveaway of The Repossession, courtesy of the wonderful people at Hachette UK!
Before you go to enter though, there are just a few rules and guidelines for the giveaway:
- You must be a follower of Pen to Paper via Google Friend Connect (GFC) to enter. I reserve the right to disqualify any entrant who does not fulfil this requirement.
- The giveaway is international, so anyone can enter.
- As the publisher will be sorting out posting the book out to the winner, I will ask the winner for their address, and then pass this onto the publishing house. This is the only place that your details will go.
- Please do not leave your email address ANYWHERE on this blog. I use Rafflecopter to keep your details safe, so please take advantage of this.
- The giveaway will end on August 31st 2012, at 23:59 EST.
Now all that's left to do is make sure you're a follower, and then get yourselves entered. Good luck to everyone who enters! :)