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Thursday, March 05, 2015

Deviate by Tracy Clark

I'm going to open with a very bold statement:  I think Deviate was even better than Scintillate!  And you'll remember that I did enjoy Scintillate very much.  A lot of times, the middle book in a trilogy can feel a bit flat, like it's only there to set up the grand finale.  But not Deviate!  Deviate definitely has it's own plot and excitement, and the reader gets to know all of the characters better.

*A quick note: this is a review of a sequel, so there may be slight spoilers to the first book.  If you haven't yet read Scintillate, you can check out my review here.

In Deviate, Cora and her friends and family go on the offensive against the Arrazi.  Cora is determined to not spend her life hiding, and she can't stand the thought of sitting idly by while Arrazi roam the world, killing innocent people.   Cora, Giovanni, and Grace know that they're special; do they hold the key to taking down the Arrazi once and for all?  With the help of friends, they seek answers no matter the cost.

Among many things that I loved about Deviate, the setting definitely stands out.  This entire book takes place in Ireland!  I could hear the Irish lilt in all the conversations.  I loved it!  Every time Finn interjected a "fookin,'" I smiled involuntarily.  A hottie with an Irish accent?  Sign me up!

Speaking of Finn, in Deviate he gets his own point of view.  The chapters loosely alternate between Cora's point of view and Finn's.  This way the reader gets to follow the action of both the scintillates and the Arrazi.  This is something I love about YA lit:  the lines between the "bad guys" and the "good guys" starts to get blurry sometimes.  Through Finn's eyes, we see him struggle with his identity.  The author does a great job with his voice; his actions are never sugarcoated, but yet I was somehow left feeling some compassion for him.  And it wasn't just because of his presumably adorable accent; he feels very real.  A teenage boy coming into his own, and having to struggle with right and wrong.

The third point of the love triangle  is more fully developed in this book too.  I'm still not sure how to feel about Giovanni.  Like Finn, Tracy Clark does an excellent job in keeping him real.  We only see him through Cora's eyes, and I'm left a bit conflicted about him.  Yes, he's a hot Italian scintillate who's trying to help Cora, but there are some things revealed about his past in this book that gave me pause.  I'll be going into the third book without picking "Team Finn" or "Team Giovanni."

Fascinating love triangles aside, the true gem at the heart of this book is the plot.  It feels much deeper in this book, of course.  The reader is right alongside the characters as they learn more and more about themselves and the world of scintillates and Arrazi.  I thought the action was a little more intense--maybe because I know Cora better and care about her more?  I absolutely love seeing her grow so much.  She went from being a timid, overprotected girl at the beginning of Scintillate to a very confident young lady who wears a slightly risky dress to a masked ball all by herself in Deviate.  She is fiercely loyal to her friends and family, and my heart broke for her whenever the danger hit too close to home.  Isn't that the mark of a great novel?  I was able to feel Cora's confusion; her love for her friends; her fear; her bravery.

I love that there was a definite story in Deviate, with all the build-up and then resolution you would want in a standalone.  Yet, there was deep character development, building off of the first book's introductions, and a hint at the end of what will come in the third and final novel.  I know that I'm hooked and ready for the third novel!


Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

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