Oppression by Jessica Therrien
publisher: Zova Books
release date: February, 28, 2012
paperback, 346 pages
intended audience: Young adult
series: Children of the Gods, book 1
source: from author for honest review
description: Elyse knows what it means to keep a secret. She's been keeping secrets her whole life. Two, actually. First, that she ages five times slower than the average person, so that while she looks eighteen years old, she's closer to eighty. Second, that her blood has a mysterious power to heal. For Elyse, these things don't make her special. They make life dangerous. After the death of her parents, she's been careful to keep her secret as closely guarded as possible. Now, only one other person in the world knows about her age and ability. Or so she thinks. Elyse is not the only one keeping secrets. There are others like her all over the world, descendants of the very people the Greeks considered gods. She is one of them, and they have been waiting for her for a long time. Among so many of her kind, she should not be very remarkable--except for the prophecy. Some believe she will put an end to traditions, safeguarded by violence, which have oppressed her people for centuries. Others are determined to keep her from doing just that. But for Elyse, the game is just beginning--and she's not entirely willing to play by their rules.
Review: Oppression definitely doesn't make you wait long before it snatches up your attention and pulls you right into the story. Things happen right off the bat that define Elyse's character and give you a little insight into who she is and how she lives. I really loved being pulled in so quickly. And this set the pace for a most of the book---chapter after chapter, we are rewarded with satisfying nuggets of information, as new questions pop up. It's a really well-told story.
There is a great cast of characters in this book, and it was fun to get to know each of their personalities and find out their powers and who they are descended from. There were parts that felt a little like "Sky High" with a gym-type class where everyone showed off their powers, but it was fun all the same. I also really loved the "human" characters---Betsy, Chloe, and was completely drawn into Anna's part of the story. I hope to hear more about Betsy and Anna and their history with Elyse in future installments of this series! The ominous "council" remains a mystery, though---definitely want to know more about them and their motivations.
The one thing that did bother me was how swoony Elyse was over William. Their relationship was sweet and lovely and they had a great chemistry, yes---but hearing again and again how gorgeous he was with his penetrating gaze and his mezmerizing smile---it just got a little redundant after the first few times. I did love them together though. I loved that there was history there, even though technically they had just met, and I love how well each one's sense of humor played off of the others. Elyse on her own was a great character. Even though she knew what she had to do and was incredibly brave in standing for what she believed in and in making some huge sacrifices, it made her very real to me to see her with just a hint of selfishness and a need to feel love since her whole life had been about distancing herself from others.
Altogether, it was a perfect mix of action, intense emotion, discovery, danger, and love. A very captivating read...with one major cliffhanger of an ending! Bring on book 2!
Visit Jessica Therrien at http://jessica-therrien.blogspot.com/.
Come by in a few days to see my interview with Jessica!
Purchase Oppression at: Amazon • BN.com • BookDepository
(right now the ebook is one .99!)