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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Review: Mystic City by Theo Lawrence

Publication Date: October 9, 2012
Publisher: Delcatore Books for Young Readers
Series: Mystic City #1
Young Adult
Pages: 416
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction, Romance
Goodreads | Amazon
Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City's two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents' sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations-long political feud—and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths. But Aria doesn't remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can't conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place. Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection—and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city—including herself.

Science fiction happens to be one of my favorite genres at the moment. Why? Because I enjoy a certain technological advanced future and the aspects that make it up, not to mention how characters express themselves in their environment all the while adapting at the same time. It just intrigues me. But when I got into Mystic City, I just found myself passively sitting, turning pages and reading on with nothing fazing me. All the elements to a fantastic novel were there: elaborate setting, three-dimensional characters with the occasional undesirable flaw and likable aspects, interesting mystery and political aspects, and a spiking climax. But I just couldn't find myself getting into this story nor was I repelled by it. I was just impassive, neutral.

Having lost her memory from what she is told as a stic overdose (a drug that has mystic-like potential stored inside, lethal at that), Aria Rose struggles to regain her memories as well as her love for Thomas Foster, her parents political arch-nemesis. The persistence that  Aria exhibits is both my favorite as well as unfavorable character trait she delivers constantly throughout the book. The determination to recall, to put all the pieces together, to just remember anything. But because of that determination she becomes rash and unaware of her consequences to no just her cause but to Hunter, the mystic that she has these irrefutable feelings before and fails to understand why. She is a character that really didn't do much for me but didn't fail to keep me entertained along the way.

The one thing that I happened to dislike was the relationship between Aria and her father. Now, in young adult genre, parents happen to be the sole characters that authors use to submit those angsty-teenage feelings towards, or just make them extremely horrible to constitute for unorthodox character actions with their background and upbringing being the sole explanation. Aria comes from a refined, rich life provided from her father's political position. Her father is a ruthless, compassionate man who wouldn't hesitate in removing her life if the outcome would jeopardize his career. Just the disconnect and the  complete abomination that her father is made out to be (and trust me, her mother isn't any better) just upsets me. I always enjoy great parental figures and when I read all these young adult books where the parents are just immature, cold-hearted, abusive, or their actions are never justified by the means I find myself shaking my head wanting to turn my head the other way. 

Final Summation: Even though there was nothing truly drawing me into the novel, Mystic City did have interesting points along the way that kept me going. Though there was no "WOW" factor for me I wouldn't tell you to disregard this novel because, who knows, you might enjoy it.

First Line: The party has begun without me.
Story: A
Cover: S