Title: Hunting Lila by Sarah Alderson
Release Date: August 4th 2011
Published by: Simon & Schuster Childrens Books
Source: Publisher & Author (thanks Sarah and Jade!)
Buy: Amazon | Book Depository
Summary (from Goodreads):
17-year-old Lila has two secrets she's prepared to take to the grave. The first is that she can move things just by looking at them. The second is that she's been in love with her brother's best friend, Alex, since forever. Or thereabouts.After a mugging on the streets of South London goes horribly wrong and exposes her unique ability, Lila decides to run to the only people she can trust - her brother and Alex. They live in Southern California where they work for a secret organisation called The Unit, and Lila discovers that the two of them are hunting down the men who murdered her mother five years before. And that they've found them. Trying to uncover the truth of why her mother was killed, and the real remit of The Unit, Lila becomes a pawn in a dangerous game. Struggling to keep her secrets in a world where nothing and no one is quite as they seem, Lila quickly realises that she is not alone - there are others out there just like her - people with special powers -and her mother's killer is one of them...
This book is so intense! A few sentences into it and my eyes were already wide as saucers. You don't get to read about a girl trying to stab a boy in the eye everyday, and that's where everything changed for Lila. She has tried hiding her ability ever since she's discovered it, and she's still grieving for her murdered mum. Frightened of what she can do, she knew she had to get away. So off to Southern California she goes, back to her older brother Jack, and back to the boy she has loved all her life, Alex. But can Lila keep her secret from her brother as well as her feelings for Alex? And what other secrets does the Unit hide from them?
Hunting Lila is one part pure action, one part love story. Put together, they make one hell of a great book. You can even take out one part and the book will still be worth the read. The story gradually transitions from Lila's struggles with first love and family, to something that can be made into a heart stopping action movie. I can't stop thinking of X-Men while reading this! Hunting Lila has great villains, explosive actions, and countless plot twists that will leave you gasping for breath. One thing I've learned while reading this? Expect the unexpected.
Lila is a vibrant protagonist. She doesn't take orders from anyone, and though she spent quite some time worrying about her powers, it was because she was afraid that she'll turn out to be a villain, which shouldn't be because Alex, her one and only love, is anything but bad. She's feisty and as fiercely protective of her loved ones as they are of her. Though a bit dense when it comes to Alex and his feelings, Lila is a great character, with a wry sense of humor that just amuses everyone around her.She's a not so typical teenager who everyone can still relate to in a sense, despite the unusual situations she always seem to put herself into.
Sarah introduces us to one of the most attractive male leads I've seen this year, Alex. The blond and blue eyed best friend of her older brother, Jack. I think he has it all except for super powers, which he doesn't really need anymore. Mysterious, strong, reliable and fiercely protective of his loved ones, with a very magnetic personality, his mature aura and the way he was able to always understand Lila must be the reason why she loves him so much. He entered the military to help his best friend, Jack, track down the person who killed Lila's mum. But despite all his good qualities, Alex isn't perfect. At one point he struggled with himself, doubted a lot of things, became afraid, but he was able to cope with it and became a rock Lila can hold on to when everything was going wrong.
I was gripping the edges of the book every time I read about Alex and Lila. There's something about them that's so intense, like every other aspect of this book. Lila, despite being the impulsive teenage girl that she was, never acted on her feelings for Alex, and that's what frustrates the heck out of me. There she was, wearing that blue dress, on his birthday, and just seeing him with another girl, Lila retreated. I completely understand why she did that, but she has to have some confidence! Maybe she's afraid to cross the line between friends and lovers? Maybe she's thinking about how it will affect his friendship with her brother? I know these are valid reasons, but Lila, will you really let someone like Alex get away?
There was this particular twist in the story made me applaud Sarah Alderson. A debut author was able to set up one hell of a surprise, and I wasn't expecting it at all! I thought the heart stopping action all throughout the story was enough, but no, there was this one jaw-dropping moment that just made me love this book so much more. I can't say what it is, but it was fabulous! With her superpowers, Lila thought she was being hunted, but soon everything seems a lie. What really is the truth? Who was being hunted? And just who is the hunter? Soon, the lines blur between truths and lies, and if Lila isn't careful, she might lose all of her loved ones before she gets the answers to all her questions.
Is this story hot? Definitely.
A thrilling read? Guaranteed!
Such a brilliant debut from Sarah Alderson! There is not a dull moment in this book. With a nice pace, swift, concise writing, a great story and character development, Hunting Lila will keep you at the edge of your seat the moment you start reading! When I finally closed the book, I was trying to gain some composure, I've lost it all because I was so focused on reading. I just fell in love with this book.
Gripping, and over-all just fantastic, I recommend Hunting Lila to all of my readers! Definitely swoon worthy and will leave you breathless countless of times! Am I excited for Fated? Heck, yes!
Content (plot, story flow, character):
Stunning: Worthy of a Goddess' Praise!
I received this book free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.