February 24, 2014

Title: Scintillate

Trilogy: The Light Key, Book One

Author: Tracy Clark ♣ @TracyClark_TLC

February 4, 2014

Publisher: Entangled TEEN

Pages: 304

Source: publisher

Genre(s): Young Adult ♣ Fantasy

Summary from Goodreads: A mighty flame follows a tiny spark.

Cora Sandoval’s mother disappeared when she was five and they were living in Ireland. Since then, her dad has been more than overprotective, and Cora is beginning to chafe under his confines. But even more troubling is the colorful light she suddenly sees around people. Everyone, that is, except herself—instead, she glows a brilliant, sparkling silver.

As she realizes the danger associated with these strange auras, Cora is inexplicably drawn to Finn, a gorgeous Irish exchange student who makes her feel safe. Their attraction is instant, magnetic, and primal—but her father disapproves, and Finn’s mother orders him home to Ireland upon hearing he’s fallen in love. After a fight with her father, Cora flees to Ireland, both to follow Finn and to look for her missing mother.

There she meets another silver-haloed person and discovers the meaning of her newfound powers and their role in a conspiracy spanning centuries—one that could change mankind forever…and end her life.

Scintillate is the first book in this lush and exciting new trilogy, full of romance, adventure and metaphysical mystery.

Average Goodreads Rating (as of 02/20/2014): 4.01

  • Christina thought the plot was really original. It goes on her second shelf.

**SPECIAL NOTE:** An eARC of this title was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. However, that did not influence this review in any way. All thoughts, quotes, and opinions will be of this version and not of the published edition.

♣ Initial Thoughts and Rating: Actual rating of 3.5 stars! This was an interesting book with an original plot and decent characters. I’m curious of the direction the author plans on taking the rest of the trilogy and if she’s going to continue with the love triangle bit with a twist of forbidden love. Overall, it was an imaginative undertaking that holds a good deal of promise for future books.

♣ The Lowdown: After waking up from an illness that almost killed her, Cora has started noticing prisms of color radiating in a glow around people. This glow present around everyone else ranges from every color in the rainbow, but she only ever sees a pure silver around herself. When she doesn’t feel like her dad is taking her seriously and that maybe the fever from sickness fried her brain, she goes on a search for her own answers. Soon she discovers that she’s seeing auras, finds herself with an unexplainable attraction to an Irish exchange student, followed by a strange man, and suffocating under her father’s protectiveness. All this pushes her into the land of her birth, Ireland, where she finds even more mysteries and some surprising answers. But most importantly, she finds guy that has the same silver-hued aura as herself and that they are a bit of a wanted commodity… and a dying breed.

My Thoughts: There was a good bit to this story that I enjoyed. The plot was original and the way the author allowed the story to unfold made for an engaging page-turner. I was even a bit surprised by some of the twists and turns along the way which is a camp that I don’t often find myself in. I also believe the author really captivated the spirit of her characters; making them sound like the appropriate age and giving each personality quirks and flaws to make them truly believable as people. I also liked the lush descriptions of the Irish setting and thought the author a great job on how she eventually incorporated certain characters.

While I was pulled in almost immediately by the uniqueness of the story, I did find that I had to hold back some on my rating because of a few particular issues. While I’m not ever against love triangles or insta-love if they’re done well, I found that in the case of this book, they came across as a bit contrived. I also felt like I was missing the emotional attachment between any of the potential love interests to be persuaded to believe in their undeniable gravitational pull to one another. It all seemed so… forced. (Though I will give the author props on a quasi-reasoning of the insta-love later in the novel. But I wanted more. I wanted to actually feel it.) However, I really did genuinely like both guys, so perhaps I can be convinced of their chemistry/love/attraction in later novels. There’s also the fact that Cora didn’t realize she was seeing auras. I mean, I don’t see them, but if I were to suddenly develop that supernatural ability that I would absolutely know what I was seeing even if I didn’t understand why at the time.

Swoons: Sometimes they came off a bit cheesy, but other times, I was totally reeled in.

Swoony teaser:

You’re radiant, Cora. It’s the only word I can think of. You have a special light about you. People try so hard to shine. You do nothing, and you eclipse them all.”
~quote taken from my eARC of Scintillate, pg. 103

Rec It? Yes, I would. Though Scintillate may have adopted few of the more well known, less-desired tropes in YA, it still made for a very entertaining read because of the originality of the plot alone. Due to the relatively short chapters shrouded in mystery and the effortless flow of the narrative, the book moved quickly and I read it in a few short hours. I’m very curious to see where the author plans on taking this trilogy with the second installment.

A very special thanks to Entangled TEEN for providing me with an early copy of this title in exchange for an honest review.


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