When I first started reading Talented, I felt it sounded a bit like Divergent in the set up. The talented felt like the Divergent – often unaccepted by society, etc, etc. Then, it felt like Twilight in that there was a forced love triangle that, really, just superseded the entire plot. More so, one of them morphs into a wolfy creature.
See, it was… okay. Not really more than that, personally. Talia was hot-headed and childish with most arguments. Accused of reasonable assumptions and she flies off the handle, seen to be thinking of her ex when kissed, and she cannot accept the rage her current person feels.
It was a bit overdone. “I love you” / “I know” said mentally seemed like it would be significant, and the outcome wasn’t worth it. You could kind of see what was coming over the final reaction, and there was no element of surprise. More so, one line stood out: “I’ve loved you from the moment I first saw you when I was twelve.”
No. Just no.
Also, it needs more editing. I don’t think even the most excitable of teens need “?????” or “?!?!?!” in their spoken or thought vocabulary. I’ve always thought that’s a lazy, juvenile point of writing.
I felt like it needed better pacing. In the initial societal set-up, it felt like you were being told it all in unnecessary detail. The best hook I find is when an author can tell you all these details in little doses, so much so it’s just subconscious to the plot. Here, pages were dedicated to the structure or back story of certain things. It felt like the groundwork was being laid too noticeably.
Erik’s secret felt like it was going in a different direction and I don’t know that the ending is actually enough to hook me into the sequel. It was all just generally average, or a second-rate version of X, Y, Z series. It felt like it could have been great, but it just relied on a number of clichés or predictable plot points. Books that pull a real surprise out of the bag plot-wise can really make up for something lacking in the writing, and I’m still waiting.
It’s more a 2.5, because it runs perfectly down the middle: average. But I’ll round up for good measure.
Pub: 23 Jan 2014 | Indie Inked