AUTHOR: Maureen Doyle McQuerry
RELEASE DATE: May 1, 2012
PAGES: 368 (ePub format)
PUBLISHER: Amulet Books
READ: February 23 - 26, 2012
BUY THIS BOOK AT: Amazon / Chapters.Indigo
SYNOPSIS 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.
This book had everything that I look for in a good book. It had mystery, it had a great adventure and it had awesome characters. I really enjoyed the story of this book, I did, but that being said I had such a hard time getting into it because of the writing. I also feel I should note that it felt very slow, although that could have been due to my inability to get into the flow of the writing. I'm not a huge fan of books written in the 3rd person and this one was also written in old speak (takes place in 1888). The thing that kept me going on this one was the mysterious land of Scree. I had to know what awaited in that peculiar place, otherwise I would have put this book down in the first 50 pages.
I was also drawn to out MC Lena. She had a longing about her, she had so many questions and she was willing to go to any length (and sometimes make terrible decisions with horrific consequences) to get her answers. I connected with her sense of displacement, she didn't feel that she belonged anywhere, she wasn't quite normal but she wasn't quite peculiar either. Jimson was also a great character, I loved his zest for life and he was a nice contrast, at times, to the serious undertones of the story. The character I loved the most was Mr. Beasley, he had such a great heart! The mystery that surrounded him for most of the novel was just as intriguing as the mystery surrounding the land of Scree.
I would definitely reccomend this book due to it's great story, but definitely warn of the style of writing and how it was difficult for me to adjust too.