Saturday, July 21, 2012

Book Review and Giveaway: The First by Sara Zaske

Author: Sara Zaske
Series or Stand Alone:
             Stand Alone
How I got it:
            By the author for an honest review
Pages: 170
Publisher: Sara Zaske
Genre: Young Adult / Urban Fantasy/ Eco-thriller
First Published: April 21, 2012
Buy it from: Amazon
Add to LibraryThing
FIRST LINE(S): "I should have never gone to the new girl's house. the walls didn't need to melt, and the ground didn't have to disappear under my feet to know I should have stayed far away from Violet Starkley."

The GIST (From Goodreads):

"Cassie Craig is not the chosen one. Not even close.

She's just an ordinary, 15-year-old California girl with a few problems. She talks too much. She has a crush on a guy in her school. She worries about her dad who is a Marine in Afghanistan.

Then, there's her new friend, Violet Starkey. The weirdest girl in school, Violet comes from a group of magical people who claim to be the first on earth.

When Cassie discovers that Violet has powers over nature, she will do anything to be her friend--all for the chance Violet might help bring her dad home.

But Cassie isn't the only one who wants Violet's powers, and she soon finds out just how dangerous it is to be the true friend of one of the most powerful magical beings in the world."


“The First” is an Eco-thriller centered on Cassie, a normal high school girl, who makes friends with Violet, the ultimate weirdo. Cassie just wants some answers after seeing Violet do something impossible but what she gets sucked into has the potential of killing everyone she knows and possibly capsizing all of California. Turns out Violet is a part of The First people, a race older than humans with powers to manipulate nature. When Violet asks Cassie to come with her to see her long lost grandfather, Cassie agrees hoping Violet will use her powers to stop the war in Afghanistan and thus bring her father home. From there everything spirals out of control with the reader’s introduction to the First people, their powers and the plot against humans.

The First was a bit slow going for me. At first I wasn’t sure if I would like the story. It jumps right into Cassie seeing Violet do something crazy and following her home. I didn’t understand why Cassie would do it and I usually prefer a bit of a lead in and intro to the characters before things start to happen. But after a rocky beginning, I sailed through “The First” mainly because of the interesting plot, characters and cool paranormal people.

What I absolutely loved about “The First” and what really made me interested in the story were the characters. Each and every one of them was unique and individual. Rather than tell you what each person with like Zaske showed their personalities in their actions and speech. Cassie was a blabber mouth, curious and good hearted. Violet was quiet, observed, and strong-willed. Don’t get me started on her mother. Each person felt real, like I knew them, and each was distinct.

I also liked the general vibe of the story. Although this is considered an Eco-thriller, it wasn’t too preachy about the whole don’t destroy the Earth message. The message was clear and I agreed with the points, but I was happy it didn’t over shadow the plot.

The only complaint I have is that I wish the relationship between Cassie and her love interest would have been a little more involved. I loved him. He was intriguing, mysterious and good-looking but their time together was too far in between for the amount of devotion he shows her. I wish he would have been a bigger part of the book.

OVERALL:  "The First" was slow going in the beginning but with kick ass paranormals, great characters and a fast paced storyline, I would recommend it as a fun and easy read.---8.5 out of 10

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