Published: Strange Chemistry, 5th March 2013
Length: 320 pages (eBook edition)
Where Did I Get It? I received my copy for review from NetGalley
Summary (from Goodreads):
17-year-old Becca has spent her whole life protecting her brother – from their father leaving and from the people who say the voices in his head are unnatural. When two strangers appear with apparent answers to Ryland’s “problem” and details about a school in Ireland where Ryland will not only fit in, but prosper, Becca is up in arms.
She reluctantly agrees to join Ryland on his journey and what they find at St. Brigid’s is a world beyond their imagination. Little by little they piece find out information about their family’s heritage and the legend of the Holder race that decrees Ryland is the one they’ve been waiting for–but, they are all, especially Becca, in for a surprise that will change what they thought they knew about themselves and their kind.
The moment I saw Ryland’s sihouette in the window of our old tree house, I knew something was wrong.
I heard quite a lot of hype about this book before I picked it up and was quite excited to read it. For once I can hold my hand up and join in the praise instead of feeling let down. I loved it.
At first I wasn’t sure about Becca’s narrative voice but after a couple of chapters it was like she found her feet and decided who she was – a no-nonsense, over protective, sensible-but-stubborn teenage older sister with a strong sense of responsibility. She made me laugh and was easy to relate to throughout. A narrator you felt you could trust and were happy to join on an adventure.
The Holders wasn’t revolutionary in terms of YA, I saw some of the plot twists long before they arrived but the characterisation, the description and the lively style of writing meant that I didn’t care.
I loved the relationships between the characters and how they developed. I especially liked that, for once, it was the male in the leading relationship who was prone to awkwardness and blushing rather than the girl but not in a toe-curling cringey way.
It was so easy to read and so compulsive that my Kindle was attached to my hand wherever I went for the duration of the book. I got to the end and wanted more, I was bitterly disappointed when I woke up the morning after I finished reading and remembered that there wasn’t any left to read. As far as I’m concerned, that’s the best sign of a good book.
I shall impatiently await book two whilst probably re-reading this one in the mean time.
My Rating: A glowing 5/5*