Mar 4, 2013

Review: The Forever Girl by Rebecca Hamilton

"Whatever you do, fight."

Sophia's family has skeletons, but they aren't in their graves.

At twenty-two, practicing Wiccan Sophia Parsons is scratching out a living waiting tables in her Rocky Mountain hometown, a pariah after a string of unsolved murders with only one thing in common: her.

Sophia can imagine lots of ways to improve her life, but she'd settle for just getting rid of the buzzing noise in her head. When the spell she casts goes wrong, the static turns into voices. Her personal demons get company, and the newcomers are dangerous.

One of them is a man named Charles, who Sophia falls for despite her better judgment. He has connections that might help her unveil the mystery surrounding her ancestor's hanging, but she gets more than she bargains for when she finally decides to trust him. 

Survival in his world, she learns, means not asking questions and staying out of the immortal council's way. It's a line she crossed long ago. If Sophia wants to survive the council and save the people she loves, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.

The Forever Girl is a story of discovery. Discovering your past, the truth of your present, and the possibility of your future.

Sophia is just your normal, completely average small town girl. Except she practices Wiccan. And she hears voices in her head. And she has a crazy night where she discovers that humans aren't the only intelligent beings that occupy the Universe.
Human. My thoughts rattle around the word. How could there be anything else?
That's the exact question I'd be asking myself, Sophia. But as she delves deeper into the supernatural world, she finds that she's not as displaced from it as her continued denial would like to think. It's the supernatural world that will give her the answers she desperately seeks, but those answers come at a cost.

I liked Sophia. She reminds me of Scarlet O'Hara, always putting off thinking of the unpleasantries until later so she can deal with what needs to be done in the moment. "I can't think about that right now. I'll think about that tomorrow." She's also got some major trust issues, which leads to sarcasm and what can feel like downright rudeness at times. This quality is both a strength and a weakness. She doesn't just roll over and accept everything without question, but then again, sometimes she oversteps and insults the intelligence and knowledge of those trying to help her. She's flawed and uncertain, but she overcomes her pain and self-doubt to do what she was meant to do.

Her relationship with Charles... That's probably one of the only real problems I had with the story. It was pretty rushed, and I felt like they went from instant hate and attraction (you know, when they throw out major attitude when all they really want, deep down, is to jump each other) to being madly in love. There were major jumps in the story where we were pushed months ahead without development, and while we can imagine the connections they might have made during that time, it would have been nice to experience the growth in their relationship.

Hamilton took the concept of vampires, shifters, and witches and made it her own, calling them Cruors, Strigois, and spirit elementals. It's a unique concept she's manufactured, these elementals being born of the Universe to make the world a better place. But as with anything that deals with intelligence and beings that have the ability of free will, things didn't exactly go according to plan.

At first, it feels like there's a story within a story, but as you're drawn in deeper, you're soon taken to the place where everything is connected. Sophia is to play a bigger role in the supernatural world than she ever could have imagined and as much as she would have liked to displace herself from it all, she can't outrun what her future has always had in store for her.

I think my favorite part of the whole story was learning about who Sophia truly is. The flashbacks and the memories ~ it's awesomely written and developed very well.

And Rebecca Hamilton can write. I love all her descriptions, from the details of the way a room looks to how Sophia feels as she struggles with her discovered identity. She renders the reality of these details especially well, bringing the story to life.

Great world building, an original twist to the world of the supernatural, and a gripping writing style. I enjoyed The Forever Girl and believe that Rebecca Hamilton is an author to watch out for.

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Rebecca Hamilton writes Paranormal Fantasy, Horror, and Literary Fiction. She lives in Florida with her husband and three kids, along with multiple writing personalities that range from morbid to literary. She enjoys dancing with her kids to television show theme songs and would love the beach if it weren’t for the sand. Having a child diagnosed with autism has inspired her to illuminate the world through the eyes of characters who see things differently. To learn more about Autism Spectrum Disorder, please visit: http://www.autisticadvocacy.org
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