Title: The Emerald Talisman
Author: Brenda Pandos
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Obsidian Mountain Publishing
Publication Date: August 01, 2010
Hardcover: 288 pages
Where’d I Get It: From the Publisher
Synopsis (From Goodreads): To be normal, sixteen-year-old Julia Parker would shed her empathic gift in a second. Life has been difficult since her mother’s mysterious disappearance ten years earlier – an event she witnessed, but can’t remember. Julia’s situation becomes more complicated after a near death experience from a blood thirsty stalker. As high school students go missing it is clear there is a connection to her own experience–past and present. Someone has to stop the madness and a chance encounter with a creepy psychic foretells that only Julia is the key to stopping the madness, but it may require the life of the one she loves.
My Thoughts: I want to say that despite the rating I’m giving this book, I did actually enjoy reading it. The author’s writing style is one that is easy to follow, easy to read, and easy to like. This is a debut novel, so I went into it expecting a touch of choppiness, a few pieces of fluff here and there, and, well, you know – debut novel stuff. Luckily I found very little of that. So little, in fact, that I can’t even remember where it was that I noticed and therefore might as well not even ponder it too much. My issue is, then, not with the writing. It’s with the content. I wanted so badly to love this book. I requested it from the publisher, after all, because…eek, vampires! Anyone who reads my blog has probably noticed that I have a thing for vampires. Of course, those same people probably know that I -hate- Twilight with a burning, fiery, blistering passion. The Emerald Talisman, my dears, has the distinct tinge of Twilight-esque-ness about it. Do we have a Bella? Somewhat. Julia is slightly less annoying. She has personality and is, for the most part, a likable gal. However, she’s an absolute pansy when it comes to Supernatural Boy, Nicholas. Who’s Nicholas, you ask? Why, he’s the super-powerful non-blood-sucking-blood sucker who has insta-attraction to Julia and who is awfully protective and demanding of her from the moment they meet. Oh, and he can drive really fast, at night, with the headlights off, while not watching the road. Sound familiar? Also, the dialogue was a bit choppy. Now that I’ve said all that…well, I’ll definitely be reading the sequel. Like I said, I’m a sucker for vampire stories. For what it’s worth, Brenda Pandos’s writing skills are leagues above Stephenie Meyer’s. I very much hope that Mrs. Pandos moves away from the needy clingy persona for Julia and branches out a little bit with Nicholas. They could be such interesting characters!
Rating: 5 of 10
Bella Factor: Yes.