Black Moon by Jessica McQuay Review: Learning about your fae heritage

December 4, 2012 by Jeann @ Happy Indulgence | 5 stars, Books, Indie, Reviews

Black Moon by Jessica McQuay Review: Learning about your fae heritageBlack Moon by Jessica McQuay
Series: Paige Taylor #1
on October 2012
Source: Author Review Copy
Genres: Paranormal, Young Adult
Amazon
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"Am I losing my mind?"

Paige couldn't help but question her sanity. What other explanation could there be for her hearing a conversation held barely above a whisper in the back of a classroom full of students? What about coming home to find one of those very classmates lying in wait in the darkness of her home, ready to attack her?

Confused, frustrated and feeling every ounce of her social ostracism, Paige confides in the one person she's always been able to count on: her mom. But when her mom reveals a deeply rooted, unbelievable family secret, Paige discovers her world is filled with more than she ever imagined possible. A world where fairytales live alongside nightmares and secrets are the glue that binds them together. Suddenly no one is who they seem and Paige is faced with more questions than answers. Can she survive in a world filled with creatures scarier than anything she could imagine and where deceit runs as thick as blood? Or will the truth send her over the edge?

Black Moon really intrigued me from the description, and little did I know that I’d be in for a treat when I started reading it.

Meet Paige Taylor, your average, socially awkward teenager just going through the motions of high school. While she’s in class, she begins to see bright white lights and hear the thoughts of her classmates. Pretty soon after, you learn that she’s half Fae, and her mother takes her off to the strange land of Varulean.

It’s here where she learns about her true heritage, how to take control of her powers, and the secret behind her father’s death. We also meet Naialah, a cocky, smart-mouthed, beautiful instructor that teaches Paige how to harness her powers of controlling nature and seeing auras.

While there’s a few things here that are a bit contrived, ie. Paige actually being royalty in the book and being more powerful than most, I really enjoyed the rich descriptions surrounding the world of the Fae. With all of its politics and niceties, there’s something a bit off about this world and Paige’s matter-of-fact comments are really enjoyable.

The book was really fast paced and there was never a dull moment. If you’re not learning about Varulean and how the Fae operate, you’re being dragged off to another training session with Paige and Naialah. Paige’s first person perspective also interweaves with Rachel, a werewolf who is after Paige’s blood. The action sequences and character development are excellent.

Now for a few odd moments. I found Paige’s mother to be kind of fake. as well. She plays the role of the doting mother exactly, but seeing her flaunt herself around the land of Varulean despite her reasons for leaving was a bit weird. With all of her lies and her secrets, I don’t really trust her.

Not to mention the budding relationship between the mysterious Naialah and Paige. This must be the first YA book that I’ve read that features a gay/bi-sexual teenager. Strangely, the feelings aren’t really delved upon and the tension is never really acted upon, but Jessica is really breaking new ground with this one. It’d be interesting to see where it goes in future books.

The attempts to flesh out the background of Rachel with the third person perspectives never really achieved anything for me, as it never makes it clear where she stands in all of this. I felt it may have been better to leave these bits out.

With these comments aside, there’s lots of mystery and intrigue here that kept me hooked from start to finish. The characters were fleshed out well and I really enjoyed the whole ‘full circle’ feel to the story, where there weren’t many loose ends left. Paige is a strong heroine with a bit of awkward charm and it’s fun to read about her, and her adventures.

I received an ARC copy from the author in exchange for an honest review, and really enjoyed it! I can’t wait to read the sequel.

Rating: 5 out of 5

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Jeann is an Aussie blogger, gamer, reader who loves to read, write, fangirl, geek out and eat food. You can find me glued to one of my many mobile devices 24/7, or fangirling over the latest YA book, TV show, movie or game. Chat with me on Twitter @happyindulgence

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