February 2011, Decadent Publishing
218 pages, Ebook & paperback
Young Adult, Paranormal
Themes: vampires, werewolves, life after at planet wide disaster, deception, fighting to survive, injury and illness, a warrior class, mysteries, lots of high peril, teen romance & occasional moderately strong romance, some violence, tissues are needed.
Summary from Decadent Publishing
My name is Rachel Clancy. Thirty years before I was born, the world ended. Today is my sixteenth birthday. Today I will go Upwards to fight the monsters and, statistically speaking, I won't be coming back - at least not living.
Initiation is the story of sixteen year old Rachel Clancy, born with a specific set of genes that let her fight monsters, she has trained her entire life to kill Vampires and Werewolves. Knowing since birth what her destiny would be has not made the onslaught of emotions she faces as she journeys Upwards any easier. It doesn't help that her father is drunk and her best friend just doesn't get 'it'.
Rachel isn't prepared for the level of deception she faces, and before long she will find herself on a quest she is in no way prepared to handle. What happens next will alter not only Rachel's life but the lives of everyone she knows. She will learn beyond a shadow of a doubt that sometimes the monsters we know are worse than the ones we don't, and that love can surprise us when it comes from somewhere we never anticipated it.
If she lives, she will be a Warrior. If she doesn't, no one will ever remember her name.
Nayuleska's reasons for loving Rachel...she's got incredible skill but feels normal because of the family hardship she faces. I didn't like how she gave up at the end, but I forgive Rebecca for making Rachel like that because there's a book two!
Is there another character who deserves a mention? ...the twins, who give Rachel a lot of sister love which she enjoys.
How evil/nasty is the enemy? Someone who wants you dead is evil. Ditto someone or more accurately something with fangs, teeth, claws, and any combination of those. But someone who seems normal until they show their true colours is seriously evil.
Are there plenty of plot twists and surprises? I haven't been on one or ever intend to, but Initiation is a rollercoaster read, flinging high peril situations and intensely emotional moments when I least expected it.
One of my favourite parts was...when Rachel learns how much her friends love her, because her life has been quite devoid of love.
The only reasons this isn't getting 10/10 because it felt like Rachel gave up a bit too easily at the end. She's a fighter, and didn't fight. I'm hoping she was just weary from all that happened, and that book two sees her faring better. I'm giving the book 9.9/10. 0.1 off full marks. What? I really like it! Just not the end. Grr!
Be sure to find out more about Rebecca and her awesome books on her website.
For more werewolf drama, try Nightshade by Andrea Cremer.