Title: Elemental: The First
Author: Alexandra Ma
Series: Book 1
Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 509 KB
Print Length: 275 pages
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1463708343
Publisher: Pauma Publishing (9 July 2011)
Rose Frost is special. Her family has spent the last 16 years trying to hide her from the world. But now only her estrange grandmother can help her and she moves in to her grandmothers house near the tiny English town of Warminster. But then strange, terrifying and vivid dreams haunt her sleep and her migraines are getting more and more frequent. As if they were not troubles enough she has feelings for two local boys and is trying not to get on the wrong side of the local kids. But when her friend's father disappears it is up to her and her friends to find out what is going on and solve the mysterious disappearances and maybe solve the mystery that is Rose Frost.
This is a hard book for me to review as I did like aspects of it but disliked other aspects. I have written and re-written this review over and over not happy with either version of my review. Having read the book in its entirety I think a significant point needs to be clarified upfront before someone reads this book; its part one. The ending is a to be continued. I strongly suspect if I had known this I would have enjoyed reading the book a lot better, but at the time I didn't so my review is a little on the negative side.
What I Liked
I found the premise interesting and refreshing for the young adult sci-fi fantasy romance genre (is that a genre? it is now). Rose has a really cool ability and there is a secret society doing battle for a long time. There is also super powers, aliens and romance (though the summary implies it is more of a fantasy book) which all come together for a fascinating story.
The world the author built is great. There is a great story surrounding Halika Dacome and I wished we had learned about it sooner and explored it further (I am guessing that is where book two comes into it. I hope).
What I Disliked
I found the book to be quite slow to start with. Nothing really happened till about chapter four. Even half way through the book Rose and her Grandma had not had “that talk” about Rose’s abilities and the secret security surrounding her. They were supposed to have this talk virtually the second day Rose arrived but it never seemed to happen.
My biggest gripe with the book was the feeling that the relationships and even characters were “forced” to fit the story. Rose in particular had really strange reactions to new friends and people, she acted like they had been best friends for years and got super offended and mad when they didn't trust her when she had only just met the person.
The two biggest offending scenes were (potential spoiler but I kept the information vague):
- Where Rose had just met two new people, then precedes to have a major tanty and threaten to walk out because they didn’t trust her with their deepest darkest secret.
- When Rose meets the acknowledged toxic girl from school who already hates Rose’s guts, for the first time. Toxic chick tells Rose she “almost got it on with the guy she likes” who is Morgan the guy who is so clearly into Rose. But the worst part was Rose believes her! Even cries about Morgans betrayal? OMG seriously? You would believe a girl who you have only just met, and had been warned to stay away from because she is one nasty over the guy who you have spent some time with and even spent the night with (not in that way)?
You might think I would say this is a terrible book but it isn't. It had faults for sure but it wasn’t terrible and I did enjoy the mythology the author created. Also I am pretty sure if I had known upfront this was a part one book I would have felt a little differently about the book.
I think for its target audience, young teenage girls, this would be a hit.
This copy of Elemental: The First was provided by Netgalley and in no way influenced my review.
I have added some images of Warminster to my Pinterest Board - Images Relating to Fiction.