4 out of 4 stars
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What if you had the power to change your surroundings? The power to have your thoughts, feelings, passions, and fits of anger manifests into a wind that strikes out at will by focusing which is controlled by a ring that you don’t even know is special. What if your mind was plagued by inner darkness, the idea that humanity was nothing more than animals and allowing yourself to be steeped in sociopathic tendencies that are cultivated only for that to be forcibly taken away by the presence of a single person that you cannot help caring for? Within this urban fantasy, we see the consequences and actions of two teenagers who have very special gifts; abilities enabled by heirlooms that only scratches the surface of who and what they truly are. This is Opaque by Calix Leigh-Reign and it is worth the read.
I rate this novel 4 stars out of 4. In my opinion, this novel should only be recommended for young adults and adults as it tackles several intense themes throughout not suitable for younger readers. I gave it four stars, not only for it being professionally edited but the thought-provoking aspects such as Adam, who is steeped in dark character tones when it comes to his mindset and outlook. Another reason is the idea that for people to live, work, and thrive together in a society, they must hide who they truly are, wearing masks to keep the truth hidden. This is not a new concept, but it is certainly relatable during the younger years when believing that parents, friends, and those close to a person do not understand them. I did not give it three stars because the concept’s core for it from the urban fantasy elements of the Limbal Rings and powers to the nuanced development of the characters as their situation becomes more intense is too intriguing to give it anything less.
What I liked most about this novel is, first, the writing style. The blend between dialogue and scenery is interesting, the latter is sparser in some areas when the environment is not needed to be focused on. It is descriptive and puts you into the area itself, but when coming down to the character interactions, it fades into the backdrop and even their actions do matter in most cases as the story focuses more on the thoughts and impressions of the main characters, how they perceive the world. Though other stories do this in some way, there is a depth in this one that makes it more life-like and compelling. Another like for this story is the mystical nature behind the rings that the main characters own, tied to their bloodlines, the rings enable the use of special powers. There is a balance between them with Adam’s anger and angst-fueled abilities and the soothing effect that Carly has on him. They are always drawn together due to this and, thankfully, it starts changing Adam’s outlook to become better.
What I disliked most about this story would be Adam, a young teenager who is filled with so much angst that he is borderline psychopathic and, within a second’s notice, willing to murder due to a person’s voice and his powers does not help with that. In the intent to isolate himself, Adam only causes the ‘animals’, which he refers to humanity within his mind, to gather around him, to reach out save for his mother. This isolation and tenuous control over his emotions cause him to lash out, to act in such a way that would destroy him and presents Adam as a danger to himself and others but is from his rocky start that his change is so pronounced as their relationship grows.
In conclusion, this was not an average coming of age novel it has some disturbs parts in it especially the disappearance of a certain store clerk. This story was deep and impactful, the more we learned about Adam and Carly along with their connection, it only made things more interesting. I was almost shocked at every turn when it came to Adam primarily, even as the story revealed more about why he acts the way he does in the beginning, I still didn’t like him and wanted to punch him to the moon. Regardless, it was a fun read and the story was exceptionally well-edited, this has made me consider picking up the next book in the Scion series just to see where the story will go next. I have a feeling it's going to be a very interesting ride.
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