Saturday, July 7, 2012

Possess by Gretchen McNeil

I picked up a copy of Possess at the Teen Author Carnival that was hosted at the Jefferson Market Library. I'd seen the cover of Possess a few times but never really heard much about it.  I was instantly sold on the book when Gretchen McNeil moderated the second panel of the evening that I attended.  Each author had to introduce their book or series in 10 words or less and hers was something along the lines of "Teenage girl exorcist banishes demons and solves two murders".  Or something like that.  She had me sold at Teenage Exorcist.  I bought the book there but Gretchen left before I could have her sign it so my roommate for BEA, Sara from Novel Novice, took it to a signing later in the week that she was attending and got it signed for me.  She carried my book through the rain to get it to Gretchen.  She also got some sweet bookmarks from Gretchen for me.  Sara is amazing and you should be following her over at Novel Novice, seriously.  Here's the Goodreads blurb and cover:

Rule #1: Do not show fear. Rule #2: Do not show pity. Rule #3: Do not engage. Rule #4: Do not let your guard down. Rule #5: They lie. Fifteen-year-old Bridget Liu just wants to be left alone: by her mom, by the cute son of a local police sergeant, and by the eerie voices she can suddenly and inexplicably hear. Unfortunately for Bridget, it turns out the voices are demons – and Bridget has the rare ability to banish them back to whatever hell they came from. Terrified to tell people about her new power, Bridget confides in a local priest who enlists her help in increasingly dangerous cases of demonic possession. But just as she is starting to come to terms with her new power, Bridget receives a startling message from one of the demons. Now Bridget must unlock the secret to the demons' plan before someone close to her winds up dead – or worse, the human vessel of a demon king.
This book was a rollercoaster ride from start to finish. The first pages set the tone for the rest of the book.  Bridget is brought to an exorcism, or as she likes to call them, a banishment.  I really enjoyed the story because the idea of a teen who can banish demons is pretty off the beaten path.  I could also relate to Bridget in her life as one of the kids who has a select group of friends and who is by no means popular.  The journey that Bridget goes on as she tries to figure out who and what she is ... it's uplifting and empowering.  She takes Matt along for the ride but she's the one growing through her own strength.  He's there for support but she kicks plenty of butt all on her own.  Who doesn't love a strong female character?!  I felt awful for Peter and totally creeped out by the Darlingtons.  Hector is the best friend that everyone needs- there for you no matter what and ready to call BS when you need to hear it.  There are moments that will shock and scare you but every step in this story is worth it.  I loved every minute of this book and I'm SO glad that I read it.

You can find out more about Gretchen and her upcoming book, Ten- which is due out on September 18th, by checking out: her blog, her Twitter or her Facebook.  Gretchen McNeil also blogs for the YA Rebels as Monday.  You can also click here to find Possess on Goodreads and here to find Ten on Goodreads.  Possess earns 5 Fairies for a refreshingly unique book that I just loved!


Lark Andrea said...

I have this on my Kindle. I can't wait to read it! Thanks for the review.

Ash said...

I was really nervous about picking up Possess because it wasn't at all what I normally read but I ended up loving it, I recommend it to everyone. :]

Great review!

Gretchen McNeil said...

Yes, Sara TOTALLY brought it to Books of Wonder in the pouring rain. That is a friend!!!! And I'm so glad you enjoyed it. :)