Eliyana can’t bear to look at her own reflection. But what if that were only one Reflection—one world? What if another world exists where her blemish could become her strength?
Eliyana is used to the shadows. With a birthmark covering half her face, she just hopes to graduate high school unscathed. That is, until Joshua hops a fence and changes her perspective. No one, aside from her mother, has ever treated her like he does: normal. Maybe even beautiful. Because of Joshua, Eliyana finally begins to believe she could be loved.
But one night her mother doesn’t come home, and that’s when everything gets weird.
Now Joshua is her new, and rather reluctant, legal Guardian. Add a hooded stalker and a Central Park battle to the mix and you’ve gone from weird to otherworldly.
Eliyana soon finds herself in a world much larger and more complicated than she’s ever known. A world enslaved by a powerful and vile man. And Eliyana holds the answer to defeating him. How can an ordinary girl, a blemished girl, become a savior when she can’t even save herself?
I love a good speculative fiction novel – Mary Weber and Jill Williamson have written some of my favorite books. I was excited to discover a new spec-fic author and couldn’t wait to read Unblemished. (I also couldn’t wait to tell my nieces that the author’s full name is both of their first names.)
Unblemished is written in first-person point-of-view, which may take a moment to adjust to, but it works. The story isn’t completely smooth and sometimes I was a little confused, but the story is being told from Eliyana’s POV, and she’s a confused 17-year-old girl trying to figure out what’s happening in her life – I felt as if I was really experiencing things as she experienced them and really understanding it as she understood it.
One thing that Ella does very well is setting the scene. Her descriptions paint detailed pictures, making it easy to envision these imaginary places. As a musician, I also appreciated her continuing use of musical references that very much reflect Eliyana’s personality and stay consistent throughout the entire novel.
Ella’s writing quickly engaged me and held my attention. Even though this is a young adult spec-fic novel, it doesn’t have as much teenage angst as other YA spec-fic books, which made it easier for this old-adult to read. If you’re a fan of authors like Williamson and Weber, I would recommend Ella’s book – easy to read, hard to put down, and a fun story. I’m already waiting for the next book.
*I received a free copy of this book. The opinion is my own.