I received this book for free from NetGalley, requested from publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Series: Mystic City #1
Published by Delacorte Books for Young Readers on October 9th, 2012
Genres: Dystopian, Love & Romance, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Source: NetGalley, requested from publisher
For fans of Matched, The Hunger Games, X-Men, and Blade Runner comes a tale of a magical city divided, a political rebellion ignited, and a love that was meant to last forever. Book One of the Mystic City Novels.
Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City's two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents' sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations-long political feud - and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths.
But Aria doesn't remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can't conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place.
Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection - and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city - including herself.
The Roses and Forrestors are powerful families that are divided in what now believes to be Manhattan, New York. The deadly cost of global warming has risen sea levels, and the city has taken up to live upwards in skyscrapers. The citizens are divided beneath the two families, but there are also the non mystics and rebel mystics. Mystics are dangerous (or so Aria is led to believe). Her family vows to reunite the two feuding families with her marriage to the handsome Thomas. When Aria wakes up with no memories of being engaged to him at all, and with memories of a love with a faceless stranger she begins to question what her family’s intentions are up to. Then she meets a mystic boy named Hunter, and life as she knows it, is turned upside down.
As for Aria, I fully support that she’s a wealthy teenage girl who happens to be emotionally abused by her politically-hungry family, but I seriously needed her to be stronger than she was portrayed. And her family!! Talk about dysfunctional! Her father is a power hungry murderer, her mom is just as bad and her older brother is a Sic user. Her entire family is crazy! Yikes! At least Aria isn’t like them. I pity her. I felt bad for her. Can I say that her family is probably quite toxic, and she should just get the heck out of there? (Yes, I’m giving advice to a completely fictional character.) Then there are secondary characters like Thomas, whom I just want to slap. Handsome, and conniving, he is a full blown liar. (Girls, don’t fall for a pretty face, the inside won’t necessarily match the outside.) The only character that I remotely held any any interest to is Davida. She’s kind and loyal and always has Aria’s back. (Please Theo Lawrence, include some moral, heart-warming characters to root for?) And the love interest Hunter, I completely forgot about him. He’s sweet, and romantic and cute, but what about his personality? I needed more character development!
The book is terribly predictable, and other than the one twist, the plot was indeed fast paced, as I flew through the pages rather quickly. The world building isn’t fully formed as other novels, but I can say it was rather realistic. Their technology isn’t as advanced as our technology today, so it’s not like I was oohing and aahhing about the marvels of their scanners. I also find it highly amusing that their cell phones are called “TouchMes.” (Excuse me, while I gag.) I can understand this book is targeted toward the young adult audience, but I felt it was too immature and lacking any depth. The romance (thank God!) wasn’t the main focus, but the mystery was, which I thankfully can praise.
I can definitely vouch and say this book will keep you entertained, but if you’re looking for a more fluffier YA novel to read, then Mystic City is definitely for you. Just keep an open mind about certain parts since I can definitely say one part did make me think, “WTF!”