Thursday, June 7

The Shapeshifter's Secret: Book Review

The Shapeshifter's Secret
Heather Ostler
Cedar Fort
June 12th 2012
Young Adult | Fantasy

Official Blurb -
Julia is finally discovering what–not who–she is.

Like any sixteen-year-old, Julia's used to dealing with problems. From her overprotective father to her absent mother to a teacher who definitely has it in for her. But everything changes when Julia's reactions become oddly vicious and angry---more animal than human. This action-packed adventure has it all: humor, romance, and a plot that will keep you guessing to the very last page.

I was only able to get half way through this book before I had to call it quits. Julia has a horrible dad. What kind of person allows his daughter to think she is crazy when he full well knows what is going on. On top of that he goes and places bars on only her window and offers no justification. He is so suffocatingly restrictive of everything she does. It is hard to like the guy especially when he follows up the watchfulness with abandonment. Julia's dad isn't the only adult to react oddly. Two other adults told ghost stories around the lunchroom table at school. Adults don't tend to tell ghost stories and do things without some sort of justification. It felt unbelievable.

There are several points in the book where things are repeated. I don't mean in a let me reiterate this important point way. More like information is passed to that character and then two pages later the same information is passed to her and she acts as if she never heard it, page 17 and 19. She did hear perfectly the first time, it was a one on one conversation in a quiet moment. So how she can feel scandalized as if she had never been told? I am thinking this might have been a typo or accidental oversight in editing.

Julia herself is completely certifiable. Or rather she is normal but randomly pulls the incredible hulk out on people. I was really beginning to think her secret is that she is descended from a long line of female hulks. Though, how there got to be a long line of female hulks is beyond me. I would think they would have troubles attracting men. Wouldn't the men be afraid they would be ripped apart during a tiny bout of PMS? After a time, I can sort of see why emotions are played out so strongly, but I don't think animals are typically plagued with rage. Julia makes some really off the charts decisions. She decides the only place she feels safe is near some pond that had previously tried to kill her. Also, she is always calling her father or even referring to him in her thoughts by his given name instead of dad. I can't see any reason she would do something so odd. Her romantic plights are just lame. She vacillates through indifference, hate, love, like within pages. Plus her choice in man is just dumb. At the half way point I was wishing her dead and decided it was time to move on.

I love a good shapeshifter story but this one didn't have characters I could understand let alone like. It seemed so promising from the blurb.

Sexual: Mild
Violence: Mild