Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon

Publisher: Harper Teen
Age: Young Adult
Species: The Marked/ Humans
Rating: 3.5-4/5
Interest: Pretty Cover/ Ireland/ Read Sneak Peak

Their love was meant to be.

When Megan Rosenberg moves to Ireland, everything in her life seems to fall into place. After growing up in America, she's surprised to find herself feeling at home in her new school. She connects with a group of friends, and she is instantly drawn to darkly handsome Adam DeRÍs.

But Megan is about to discover that her feelings for Adam are tied to a fate that was sealed long ago—and that the passion and power that brought them together could be their ultimate destruction.

I'm sort of torn in this review. The Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon was a good book, but it felt a little rough around the edges. The pacing was off. Certain parts of the novel were glossed over while others took a little too long to develop and huge chunks of secrets and information were shoved at me all at once, then forgotten. There was one specific part of the book where a "prophecy" was being recited and I was literally screaming to the book, "It's about you, you #@%!ing morons!" Still, the characters could not decipher this prophecy by the end of the book. Even though the legend had glaringly obvious specifics, which fit the group exactly. It annoys me immensely when I feel like the characters have to play dumb so that a big revelation can't occur until later.

In spite of my aggravation with the pitfalls of the novel, I maintain that it was a good read. I loved two particular characters and wanted to know so much more about them. Adam's guardian, Fionn, oh my god, I completely fell in love with the man. I found myself wanting to read and hear more about Fionn's story than most other things. SPOILER: I desperately wanted to see his tragic affair with Emma. He sounded so incredibly in love with her, and to have lost her after just getting her? I felt so bad for him. END SPOILER. Adam and Aine's brother Rian stole my heart as well, with his bad boy attitude. Plus, I've always had a fascination with fire.

There's always been this big part of me that loves elemental powers. According to my zodiac, I'm air, The Carrier of the Mark Quiz (which you could take on facebook before the book was released) called me earth, and I've always liked fire and water. I immensely enjoyed the Irish lore connected to elemental powers and the way the marked could use their abilities in the book. I think control of the elements is a very under utilized power in fiction, I'd like to see more of it. Before witnessing Meagan use her powers, I didn't feel like she had the potential to be a really strong character. When she busted out with her ability like nobody's business to protect her friends, I was so proud of her. It seemed like she was finally becoming someone powerful and confident that could really kick some ass.

Ireland has always been a magical place for me. Setting the story in there was one of the best things Fallon could have done. Mainly, it was a good decision since the elemental abilities could be rooted in Irish lore, as mentioned before. However, it also gave Carrier an added personality in getting to hear about the land, the food, the language and other aspects. Ireland has a rich culture, brimming with magic, it really made the novel come to life. Though it made character names murder to spell and pronounce correctly, I still adored them all.

As a side note, I noticed that Carrier of the Mark had a great number of similarities with Twilight. It was not a replica, but I began looking for the Twilight-like scenes just to see how many there were. I would think, that if you happen to enjoy Twilight, which a number of people do, this would be an ideal novel for you. (For me, Carrier was a much better version of Twilight. Everything from the couple's attraction to the revealing of supernatural abilities was handled in a more mature and realistic fashion.)

Carrier of the Mark is a sweet and mystical novel about first love, Ireland, and trying to keep the world in balance. It's a fast read that could easily be done in a day. I would advise people to buy it, but if someone else owns it or your library stocks it, read their copy first before deciding to get it. My recommendation would be for fans of fantasy, Ireland, the elements and especially Twilight to pick up this book right away.

Series Order:
1. The Carrier of the Mark
2. Dawn of the Knights (2012)
3. Age of the Fifth (2013)

Teaser Line: "Don't worry about it. I'd have dumped me too if I was on a romantic date with that!"

Happy Reading,

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