Hidden (Avena 1) by Marianne Curley

 Published by Bloomsbury Children’s

 3.5 out of 5 stars

format: eGalley (available on kindle and paperback in Australia 1st March 2013 and UK from 14th March 2013)

Hidden is told in first person style, from two POV – Ebony, a girl who begins to notice some strange changes in her body and Jordan, a kid with a tough life but a kind heart.

Ebony lives with her parents on a farm, and until recently was home schooled, they were always very over protective of her and she’s never left the boundaries of the town. But as she gets older they release the leash a little and she’s allowed to attend high school and make friends. But Ebony’s noticed that she’s stronger, faster and has keener senses than her school friends, and its getting worse. Ebony meets Jordan on a night out, they are drawn together, but tragedy strikes and they are pulled apart before even exchanging a name.

Jordan’s given a lifeline, by a strange, yet likable man, sorry Angel, named Thane. Help him find their lost princess, Ebrielle, and so the two start on a journey to bring the stolen princess back home, but by doing so they unravel Ebony’s past and risk the world when doing so.

I quite enjoyed Hidden, the writing style was a little young for me, normally in this type of YA paranormal book I’d be expecting to read a book that was aimed at, and written for, adults, with a younger theme. But this appears to be for mid-teens, and is quite full of teen angst and drama. Thats not a bad thing, it was still very readable, and enjoyable but there was no challenge to it.

The stories good, Ebony is a little annoying, no, bland. The truth behind her past is obvious, but I don’t think it was ever meant to be a surprise to the reader. Jordan’s a much better character, your heart bleeds for him and all he’s been through, and the reader really rallies to get behind him. I also liked Ebony’s best friend, however having sat down to write this review I found that I didn’t have a clue what her name was – April perhaps? Thats not good when you forget a fairly central character is it? Anyway, this ‘April’ was a breath of fresh air in YA books, no bitchiness, neediness, or interference, but just unwavering support for Ebony who’s going through a rather strange change.

Over all enjoyable, and a good start to a series that I’d read more of. Nothing sensational to write home about and it certainly doesn’t match up to angel stories such as Angel by L A Weatherley or Unearthly by Cynthia Hand, but its not one to be dismissed, there’s definite potential. The ending set up book 2 brilliantly and I’m hoping it’ll lead to a change of direction from the expected.

ARC/eGalley kindly provided by Netgalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.


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