Author: Lani Woodland
Publisher: Pendrell Publishing
Release Date: August 20, 2010
Sixteen-year-old Yara Silva has always known that ghosts walk alongside the living. Her grandma, like the other females in her family, is a Waker, someone who can see and communicate with ghosts. Yara grew up watching her grandmother taunted and scorned for this unusual ability and doesn't want that to be her future. She has been dreading the day when she too would see ghosts, and is relieved that the usually dominant Waker gene seems to have skipped her, letting her live a normal teenage life. However, all that changes for Yara on her first day at her elite boarding school when she discovers the gene was only lying dormant. She witnesses a dark mist attack Brent, a handsome fellow student, and rushes to his rescue. Her act of heroism draws the mist's attention, and the dark spirit begins stalking her. Yara finds herself entrenched in a sixty-year-old curse that haunts the school, threatening not only her life, but the lives of her closest friends as well. Yara soon realizes that the past she was trying to put behind her isn't going to go quietly.
My Thoughts: I didn't know what to expect from Intrinsical. I just knew I wanted to read it and hoped that I would like it. While the beginning didn't grab me right away, I clearly remember the moment I became completely hooked. It was during the last two-thirds of the novel. It was filled with many surprises, and it was exactly what I was hoping for and more, exceeding any expectations I had! If I had to describe Intrinsical in one word it would definitely be impressive.
I admit Yara, the main character, had to grow on me just a bit. She had a temper, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but combined that with the fact that she would keep secrets about her abilities.....well, it did get a bit frustrating at times. And then she would sometimes go into dangerous situations without thinking things through. But you know what? Sometimes risks are necessary. It may have seemed stupid at first, but in the end, it was smart and really brave. If she didn't follow her instinct, she never would have been able to get out the situation she and Brent were stuck in. I'm proud of her for making her own decisions, and I ended up really liking her feisty character.
The relationship between Yara and Brent was one of the things I really loved about this book. Right away it was easy to see that they were interested in each other. It seemed like a typical romance was about to bloom between them, and I thought it was only a matter of time before they were kissing and became a couple. But I was wrong! They became friends first. They didn't jump into a romantic relationship because all that mattered to them was helping each other stay alive. That's what they focused on, and I loved that. There were also times where they became irritated and frustrated with each other like normal people. I'm so glad for that because it made their relationship seem more natural and believable.
As I mentioned, I really enjoyed the last two-thirds of the novel. I thought the paranormal aspects were very unique, and it was filled with some pretty heart-pounding moments, which really surprised me! At first I didn't like that important information wasn't revealed right away, but I really came to like how it was all done. When I finished I just knew it wouldn't have been nearly as interesting and exciting if the author decided to not reveal only bits and pieces throughout the story. Another thing I really liked about the last two-thirds of the novel were the secondary characters like Yara's friend Cherie and Brent's friend Steve. I thought they were just going to continue to stay in the background, but nope! They became very important to the story, and they were just as great as Yara and Brent. I hope to see more of them in the sequel!
With a unique ghost story and one of the few I can think of off the top of my head that has a romance that develops gradually and naturally, I have to say that Intrinsical is definitely one of the better young-adult paranormals I've read. It didn't end in a cliffhanger (in fact, I was completely satisfied with the ending), but it still left me wanting more and feeling very impressed. I so look forward to Indelible, the next book in 'The Yara Silva' trilogy, to find out what happens next with Yara and Brent and their friends! Be sure to check out these books!
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars