Friday, June 29, 2012
REVIEW: Kelly Meding's Changeling
Author: Kelly Meding
Publishing stats: June 26th 2012 by Pocket Books (USA)
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Cover Blurb: HEROES FOR HIRE
After barely escaping a madman's attempt to annihilate all MetaHumans, Kelly Meding's supernatural crime fighters have banded together to take back the streets of war-ravaged Los Angeles.Dahlia "Ember" Perkins still feels like an outsider among her new Meta friends, despite everything she's been through since coming into her miraculous ability to absorb heat and extinguish fires. But when the police need help investigating human skins discarded like slipcovers on the street, the Metas' youngest team member quickly finds her place. Evidence points to a murderer the likes of which they have never encountered but who inexplicably seems to be gunning for Dahlia-and who may be neither human nor Meta. After a bullet meant for her nearly kills one of her teammates, Dahlia uncovers a connection to the crimes buried deep in her past. As the danger escalates and her personal life falls apart, Dahlia soon learns there's no such thing as a "normal" relationship when you're a superhero. . .
First line: "Who’s got the friggin’ fire extinguisher?"
What I liked: I loved how the perspective change in this book really and truly affected a brand new view of this world. The first book in this series was narrated by Teresa "Trance" West and focused on the heroes getting their powers back after a fifteen year absence and learning how to cope and find their place in a hostile world. This book was narrated by Dahlia "Ember" Perkins, the new girl on the super-powered block and the only member of the team who didn't spend a chunk of their childhood living with the others. I loved that her tone was so distinct from Teresa's. It was nice starting the series with a narrator who was able to contrast the characters against their childhood selves and then, for the second book, see those same characters with fresh eyes ignorant of who they once were.
What I didn’t like: This is another one where I didn't like the ending. Not because it wasn't good - it was great and accomplished everything an ending in an ongoing series is supposed to do, namely leave you wanting more. My problem with it was that it felt less like an ending and more like a pause. Which would be fine if the next book was picking up with a new point of view and focusing on other characters having their time in the limelight. The love story element in particular was left in question with one hell of an obstacle left in its path.
Overall: One of the things I love about this series is how the author takes pains to deal with consequences. How many times has Superman been thrown through a building? How about Green Lantern - how often has his ring-generated creations gone awry and squashed a car or two? And those are just the good guys. Ms. Meding takes the genre of superheroes - the powers, the team dynamics, the villains, the government agencies/distrust - and infuses the lot of it with a heavy dose of realism, transitioning it from the impossible to the improbable. The adventures these heroes undergo are believable and playout in a Hansel and Gretel style that keeps you guessing until the last minute - and in neither book did I see the major twists coming until POOF! There they were. Overall, a fantastic read.
Would I read this author again: Yes. I've always been a sucker for superheroes and their adventures.
My rating: ♥♥♥♥♥/5
To purchase the book for yourself, you can find it at Chapters.Indigo.ca, Amazon.ca, Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble or The Book Depository. Enjoy!