I watch The Vampire Diaries, I talk in acronyms when it’s faster, I’ve tried Four Loko, and I make up my own words when Urban Dictionary fails me. I wouldn’t call myself trendy (I’ve never had a mani-pedi and I drive an F-150), but, lucky for me, I happen to like a lot of things that are, which keeps me current. But that’s not really what’s important. Jean waistbands go up and down; hair gets bigger and smaller; but the one thing that stays constant is teen emotion.
Like every teenager on the planet, I pledged to be a “cool” mom when I had kids. At the time, one of my biggest concerns was my mom’s wardrobe – she didn’t even own a pair of jeans until I went to college and even then she ironed them – but now I can see what I really wanted was someone I could talk to that got me and what I was going through. During my teens, my mother and I had a terrible relationship; we had nothing in common – that I know of anyway, since we had zero communication. Don’t worry; I’m not opening old wounds by saying that; my mother (with whom I have a great relationship with now) would tell you the same thing. In fact, I clearly remember a phone conversation we had when I was in college:
Mom: You know, you’re my favorite child.
Me: Leslie, I’m your only child.
Mom: Believe me, there were a few years where you were not my favorite child.
I don’t know how or why age lines get drawn, then widen until they become a huge gap between “us” and “them,” but I think the key to that exchange is that I called her by her first name, because we’d finally reached the level where we saw each other as people. And a teenager is an extreme person, like adult-life is a relay race and the teen years are the X-Games! The highs are euphoric and the lows are crippling. I don’t see how so many people forget that over time, when I can so clearly remember how a break-up can feel like someone is stomping the air out of your chest or that winning a competition gives you a superhuman rush.
So even if I lose touch with trends and start wearing corduroys and saddle shoes (I’m not even sure what those are, but they sound old), I know that the heart of a teenage girl will always be current, and all any of us have to do to stay connected with youth is to stay connected with that part of our own souls.
At the beginning of the summer, Clio Kaid was one of a hundred teens brought to a secret Army installation. But it was no ordinary camp and they weren’t ordinary kids… Soon after learning they were the products of a secret genetic experiment, the teens began developing super-abilities ranging from bounding lightness to blocking heaviness; blinding brilliance and the ability to vanish. These same gifts made them targets of a psychopath in officer’s clothing, and they found themselves fighting for their lives. Picking up where “Solid” left off, Clio and her friends realize that they aren’t ready to go home; they’re determined to stay on campus and continue their journey of self- discovery. But someone doesn’t feel the same way and will do anything to drive them away – even kill. Friendships will be tested, abilities will evolve, and more secrets will come out as the teens race to stop the killer before he sets his sights on one of them…
In this thrilling second installment of the Solid series, Clio and friends are learning how to be human...themselves while still learning their newfound powers. There is some romance, intrigue and secrets that will keep you turning the pages frantically. The ending is a doozy and you'll want book three right away, but it doesn't come out until next summer! Settling can be read as a stand alone novel, but for best results, read the first book in the series, Solid, first. I really enjoyed this book, watching the bonds of friendship strengthen and the addition of some new characters. A great science fiction young adult novel!! Write faster Shelley!!
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USA only. Contest ends on July 18th. Winner has 48 hours to respond to email or a new winner will be selected. I received an ARC to faciliate this review but all thoughts and opinions are expressly my own.
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