First, let me tell you what I didn't like about this book.
There's a list, so hold on.
1. Calla made it clear to Shay that a relationship between them could never happen. Fine. That's fine. He still pursued her. Again, that's fine. He's not the one with the issue. In fact, he just wants her to make her own decisions. Good for him. But then, she is the one who can't control herself. In the same breath as telling him it can never happen, she asks him to kiss her. She asks him to kiss her. Not her kissing him, even. She asks him to kiss her. But then gets mad when he won't back off. I don't know, here, Calla, maybe stop holding the boy's hand during your secret meetings and giving him non-answers about your feelings for Ren.
2. Then there's Ren. Okay, Calla is coming off a tad slutty to me. She wants Ren. She wants Shay. She makes out with both of them. That's all well and good. No slut-shaming here. IF she weren't downing Sabine for being on Ren. You can't go after two boys, play coy, then claim virtue, Calla. It just doesn't work that way. Even when she's running away (let's be honest, here- to be with Shay) she's kissing Ren and telling him she doesn't know who she wants, but needs him to buy them some time to get away. Whatever.
3. Calla is all about independence from Ren and making up her own mind when she is with him. But then turns around and tells Shay that she thinks it's right. No. No. No. Make up your mind!
4. Why does it always have to be a big deal when a character is gay in YA books? Seriously. No one is ever just gay and happy (no pun intended). It always has to be an issue. I know that in reality, gays face prejudice. Sure, but there are some that don't. Besides, maybe if we didn't have to make it an issue in media, then it wouldn't be so bad in real life? Whatever.
However, I did give this book 4 stars. Why? Because I liked the suspense of it. I want to know who the real good guys and bad guys are. I'm not surprised that the Keepers are liars. I'm not. That much was a given. Any time one group makes another group feel grateful for being enslaved (for all intents and purposes), they're hiding something.
I want to know more about the Searchers, and I think that's where the story is heading. There's some old mystical, magical history there, and I think it'll be good.
And what's with Shay being the Scion and a Guardian? Will those interfere with each other?
And how much should we really trust his uncle? For some reason, my Red Herring bulb lit up with him. Maybe he does care about Shay? Or maybe he's using him to complete some ritual? Or as a weapon? There are a lot of angles to consider here. And if he were going to cover up his Scion mark, then shouldn't he have made it so that NO ONE could see it? I mean, it doesn't take much for someone to mention it to him.
There are a lot of questions floating around right now and I can't wait to read book 2.