Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Transparent by Natalie Whipple Review

TransparentTransparent by Natalie Whipple
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Goodreads: Plenty of teenagers feel invisible. Fiona McClean actually is.

An invisible girl is a priceless weapon. Fiona’s own father has been forcing her to do his dirty work for years—everything from spying on people to stealing cars to breaking into bank vaults.

After sixteen years, Fiona’s had enough. She and her mother flee to a small town, and for the first time in her life, Fiona feels like a normal life is within reach. But Fiona’s father isn’t giving up that easily.

Of course, he should know better than anyone: never underestimate an invisible girl.

My thoughts: Okay, I read a digital ARC so I can't really be quoting this book. But if I DID quote the opening paragraph, it would read something like this:

"I nearly died the second I was born. The doctor dropped me, but it wasn't his fault. When I smacked the floor and let out a screeching cry, all anyone could see was the semitransparent umbilical cord. The poor guy scooped me up, grasping in shock at my invisible body."

Sold on the first paragraph. But you should see the first chapter past the Prologue. Wow.

Here's the premise: Driven by fear of radioactive poisoning due to the Cold War, people took a little blue pill called Radiasure. It was supposed to protect from radiation poisoning. Whether it did or not is beside the point. There were side affects that could not be foreseen. Small for the generation that took the drug, their DNA was rearranged to some small degree. It played out more acutely in their children. Then their children's children. What they birthed were children with mutations that included anything from unwanted hair to weird abilities. Fiona is the only known case of invisibility. She's never even seen herself.

So some of the powerful crime lords either recruit or couple with others who have mutated DNA to create super criminals. Fiona is a child of a crime lord and she wants out for reasons set up in the book. She may be invisible but she is not immune to mobsters and thugs, particularly those with super abilities.

I want to say more but I'm afraid I'll give spoilers. Let me simply say that the story's pace is well timed, the character depth and detail is well developed, and the supporting characters are consistent without being boring.

It's an original story line with interesting characters with fun quirks. Expect some farm words and a bit of violence but an overall clean read. I enjoyed the unexpected twists and the fact that the book can stand on its own or continue into a series. I don't know if there is another down the road but if there is, I'll read it.

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1 comment:

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