A Need So Beautiful by Suzanne Young
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is an original and unique take on good vs. evil. Suzanne Young writes the story of Charlotte, a girl with no past and perhaps with no future. She simply showed up one day and was taken in by a kind foster mother, Mercy. As Charlotte grew older, she would feel compelled to a place or a person and intervene in some way to impact a life for good. Resisting the Need is physically painful. Actually, the Need itself is painful. Charlotte is compelled to a place where she meets a person. Once in close proximity of this person, Charlotte sees what she needs to see; she knows the person's name, past events, and current crisis. Charlotte then acts as a vessel for information that person needs at that moment.
As time goes by, however, the Need is more and more intense and constant. Trying to hide this quirk is becoming impossible. She has never intimated her strange ability to her boyfriend, Harlin, her foster brother or foster mother or to her best friend, Sarah (although Sarah has her suspicions). But the more she responds to her Need, the more quickly Charlotte is being physically destroyed. Yet she has no choice.
Enter the conflict. Charlotte happens to be a type of being that is good and provides hope and peace to mankind. Eventually, her usefulness will conclude and she will implode/disintegrate/disappear. There have been others before her and they all meet their demise. Except one. Onika stayed. She no longer answers to the Need. However, she is the Darth Vader to Luke Skywalker or Lord-who-must-not-be-named to Harry Potter or the Wicked Witch of the West to Dorothy.
I liked the story and I liked the unique approach to good and evil. I will admit, however, that the ending left me unsatisfied. I wouldn't exactly call it a cliffhanger but I wanted more closure. As it turns out, it is the first in a series.
So I'll stop whining. But I'm waiting.