Rising by Stephanie Judice
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I want to thank the author, Stephanie Judice, for providing me with a copy of her book, Rising (The Setti Sata, Book 1) to read and give an honest review.
Blurb from Goodreads: Having waited a millennium to return to the fertile feeding ground of earth, the dark giants break through a portal and storm out into the world in the guise of a massive hurricane—famished and fierce. Across the ocean, seventeen-year-old Gabriel Goddard is being plagued by terrifying nightmares about creatures that singe and burn the flesh then absorb the life energy of humans and devour the ashes. A chance meeting with Clara Dunaway immediately distracts Gabe from bad dreams. He has always had a sort of sixth sense—to feel the emotions of others around him. Clara’s presence numbs his other sense, nearly knocking him into a hypnotic state. Bewildered and fascinated, he is lured in by her. When Clara finally confesses that she has a similar gift to see auras around people, a spark flames between them, ignited by a paranormal force. Fate soon reveals that there is a higher purpose for their attraction. Along with Jeremy, the head-bangin’ metal head; Ben, the air-headed golden boy; Melanie, the kind- hearted Creole; and the old hermit named Homer, they must face this enemy as one. Discovering that they are descended from an ancient clan of Norse warriors, they awaken their dormant powers, preparing for the dark giants' imminent invasion of their home. A shadow of darkness veils the land. Will the Setti rise to fulfill their long-awaited destiny?
What would you do if you found yourself able to understand people's emotional states by feeling it? For Gabriel, he's had this happening all his life. For this reason, he's never let anyone get close to him. Until now... When he meets Clara, he is drawn to her and can't explain why. He tries his best to avoid her, but their paths just keep crossing. And one day, she recognizes the monster in his drawing from art class. It's the same monster that haunts her dreams..and his!
I love the twists and turns this book takes. I have to admit, the first few chapters did not draw me right in. I was skeptical as to whether or not I would like it. But I pushed on and I'm so glad I did. It's a book about monsters and those who are destined to fight them, to help save humanity.
Judice has written an amazing tale. You are taken on the journey of 5 teens who lives are connected through the past.
Gabe is the main male protagonist. At first, you see that he is a bit introverted and doesn't like to open up much to others. Of course this is attributed to the emotional connections he feels with others. He has a few friends, but mostly seems to keep to himself. And, despite what seems to be his popularity with the girls at school, he doesn't date. You can see that he is sensitive and loving. He cares deeply for those around him, especially his best friend Benjamin.
Clara is the female protagonist. She is strong and sassy. She has no qualms with letting others know how she feels. I love this about her. She is straight forward and smart. And she can definitely take care of herself.
And the cast of supporting characters is amazing. The characters are quirky and fun and all come along with strong personalities that you just cannot resist. If you like XMen, then you will like these characters, because they all have powers essential to completing the task put forth for them in the book.
The action scenes are well thought out and graphic enough that you really feel as if you are living them along with the characters. I found myself reading faster and faster during the scenes with my heart racing in my chest.
I did have an issue with paragraph length in this book. The writing is very good, but the paragraphs are too long and really could have been broken up. Sometimes pushing through a paragraph almost an entire page long made me want to put the book down and stop reading it. But the story had such depth and quality that I pushed through to find out what was going to happen.
Overall I think Judice has written the start of a terrific trilogy with so much potential. Her writing flows well and she even adds elements of humor to break up the seriousness of what these teens are experiencing. I highly recommending picking this series up and seeing what it's about.
4 out of 5 stars.
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