Friday, July 12, 2013

The Originals ~ Cat Patrick (earc) review

The Originals
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
May 7, 2013
307 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depo/or Amazon

Some families have secrets, some more shocking than others. Lizzie, Betsy and Ella's secret most likely more shocking than any secret your family's been keeping.

After years of being raised as identical triplets, their mother not only moved them cross country but told them the truth: they were genetic identicals: clones.

In hiding from the governmental agency that wants to expose them for what they are, the Best girls are undercover as a single girl. To the outside world, the Best family is a single mother and her only daughter, Elizabeth Best. The girls each take a section of the day, a third. One covers part of school the second the rest and the third evening time. No one knows there are three girls.

It may not be ideal, but it's what the girls know. What keeps them safe.

Until Lizzie meets Sean Kelly, someone who seems to notice that she's different, without actually knowing that she is. The more time she spends around Sean, the more Lizzie begins to realize she isn't just a third of Elizabeth Best, that she's her own person. And to want her own life. But is it possible?

With The Originals my love affair with Cat Patrick and her writing is still in full swing. Forgotten, her debut, continues to be one of my favorite books with London Lane and Luke being two of my favorite characters, favorite relationship. Then Revived is all kinds of magnificent, too and I'm in love with it.

So, see The Originals had a lot to live up to . . . the awesomesauce thing? It totally did.

I feel strange repeating things from my reviews of Forgotten and Revived but it bares repeating so here you go: the premise of this novel is kind of brilliant and so unique. I've read books about clones (Mila 2.0 most recently) and sisters and lots of coming-of-age novels, but this book smooshed them all together. In a fantastic way. With a bit of possible, secret governmental danger thrown-in.

What really makes Patrick's books so great, however, (and this is a repeat assertion from the other two reviews, I fear, as well) are the characters she creates. The characters and their relationships. The Originals characters feel very real. There's the sisterly relationship the girls have that, at times, feels like a regular relationship between three teenage sisters. Yet, there's the added layer of how they're living their lives and all that puts on them, individually as well as how they interact.

Then there's Lizzie and Sean. Really, I love that Cat Patrick writes some of my favorite YA romance and yet her novels aren't exactly YA romance. The romantic leads aren't just interacting with other characters on the periphery, with their scenes being the main story; their relationship is part of the whole story. We still get a very full relationship from them but as they interact, progress and, hopefully, grow a relationship in the midst of the full plot of the narrative, with all of the other characters a part of things, the result is more real and true feeling

This is a fantastic read and I'll be counting down the days until the author's next release.

Rating; 10/10

e-arc thanks to NetGalley and LBYR

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