REVIEW by Heather: Gifted by Liz Long (@_Shoe_Girl_)
Even in a world of freaks, being a Firestarter is considered a dangerous Gift.
Lucy was born with the ability to create and control fire. She longs to leave the human world for one filled with Earthshakers, Transporters, and Chameleons, to name a few. When she rejoins the circus, it’s everything she hoped it could be—new friends, a potential love interest or two, and a place where she can be herself.
When troupe members begin turning up dead, however, Lucy is suspected of foul play. She must not only prove her innocence but also realize the full extent of her power. To find the real murderer, she must uncover the truth behind her father’s fiery legacy while figuring out whom to trust within her new circle. Little does she know the history of the Donovan Circus and its enemies might actually destroy the entire gifted world.
Hmmmm, where to begin? I received an email from Liz Long, wondering if I would want to review her book, Gifted. After checking it out, I said sure! Looked like it could be good. While I’m NOT a fan of circuses (my mom said I FREAKED at the circus as a kid when I saw the clowns…maybe that’s why I’m not a fan), the different atmosphere was a very nice change from the dark/woodsy type settings in a lot of YA novels lately.
After her parents pass away, Lucy goes back to the circus that her family was in when she was younger. Not your typical circus: most of the performers are actually not human; they’re Gifted. Lucy and a couple other characters are firestarters, there is a shapeshifter, transporters, runners, and various other kinds of Gifted. With their gifts, they can easily put on very entertaining (and dangerous) shows, since they won’t be harmed like a human would be.
Lucy quickly makes friends, and a couple adversaries. When things start happening to people in the circus family, everyone looks at Lucy…she’s new, so it HAS to be her causing these things to happen, right? Not only does Lucy have to deal with people giving her the cold shoulder, she has to try and prove to the group that she does, in fact belong there. She has talent that she brings to the circus and wasn’t just let in because her father was a good friend of the owner. She also has to deal with two guys who take interest in her. Keegan (a fellow firestarter) is sweet, easy to get along with and just makes her feel content. The other, Gabriel, challenges her, protects her, and has major chemistry with her.
While this is seems like a YA novel, there is a lot of strong language, and some fairly graphic fight/sexual assault scenes, so I’d recommend it for “older” YA readers (the characters are in their 20s). There is plenty of fun, unrealistic superhero-type action in this book (which, like circuses, I don’t usually like too many superheroes but it fit really well in this book) as well as very realistic friendships/romances.
Gifted was a refreshing change from the “norm” of what I have been reading lately, and I hope this book does really well!! I also look forward to the second book, whenever that comes out!
Get Gifted on Amazon!