Water (Akasha #1)
By Terra Harmony
1 out of 5
Elemental powers in the palm of her hand...and it won't be enough to save her. When Kaitlyn Alder is involuntarily introduced to a life of magic, she becomes part of an organization hell-bent on saving the Earth. Just as her new-found life holds promises of purpose, romance, and friendship, the organization divides and a rogue member holds Kaitlyn hostage. Now one of the most terrifying men the human race has to offer stands between her and Earth's survival.
Kaitlyn is just your average, troubled young woman. After losing her parents, she's never stayed put in one place, never felt the need to connect with people.
Then after an avalanche, she regains consciousness on an island where she is to learn the truth about all those little coincidences that niggle away at her. Like the fact that wherever she goes, natural disasters follow - could it really be here causing them?
I was sold on the synopsis, and many high reviews. A woman finding out she can control the elements? Sounds cool, and right up my street. I admit that I had a sudden flash back to "Captain Planet and the Planeteers" (I always wanted one of those rings as a kid), although I realise that this is a much more grown up version.
I normally start my reviews with a few good points... but this book pissed me off too much for me to remember any... Don't get me wrong, it's well written, and I would let others give it a try because they may love it. I just didn't.
It starts with a someone getting caught in an avalanche. With it being in first person, and that person being right in the thick of it in the very first sentence, we don't get to know much more than the fact that they were stupid enough to go snowboarding without telling anyone.
Chapter two has them waking up in a plain room, that they immediately want to escape. Why she wants to escape it, I have no idea. I would have assumed that the average someone who's just survived an avalanche and wakes up in an unknown room would hang around and wait for some answers, before deciding what to do. But no, with only a couple of flashback memories of her parents that do not explain any pathological need to be free, or fear of enclosed spaces, Kaitlyn makes a big effort to break a window and scrambles out, gaining a new collection of cuts and bruises.
Then suddenly she'd surrounded by half a dozen guards that have been ordered to detain her. At no point is there any attempt by the opponents to talk to her so no one gets hurt
(because they are all on the same side). No, it's just straight into hand to hand combat. In which Kaitlyn wipes the floor with them all. *cough* I know that her strength is enhanced by the island, but seriously, a couple of sentences about where Kaitlyn did her martial arts previously, or how pleased her trainer would be if he could see her now, would make it easier to buy. We're still left in the frustrating place of her being just a somebody, with no experience to dictate why she would act like this.
Shawn is on the scene for a second, before he's marked as the bad guy that's going to betray them. He immediately wants to inflict pain on Kaitlyn. But you know what, the story does go on to give some of his background and why he is that way. So that is believable.
Then Micah pops up. Even though he's the one that subdues her, and takes her to a lab, and is still part of this suspicious place - he's ok because he's hot. By Chapter 6, they've already kissed and are sharing a bed. Kaitlyn still hasn't decided if she trusts the whole place yet, but Micah's ok. Blah.
The story drones on and on for a while. It's all interminable, really. Lots of training. Lots of Micah. Lots of scary looks from Shawn. Mild explanation. I was bored out of my skull with reading Kaitlyn's snarky opinion of everything. It was a relief when it switched to 3rd person every now and then, to get in those extra info dumps.
And then there was more Micah... for a girl that claims to be totally independent, she's sure gotten clingy quick, and doesn't seem to mind one bit. The rest of the story really just seemed to get in the way of the Micah adoration.
Anyway, action finally happens, and they get to go on their first mission!
They get to present leaflets to hotel owners on the benefits of using recyclable water bottles.
No, I didn't make that up. People with superpowers, and they're doing that? I would say that's a waste of time management, get some of the normal humans to do that stuff, assign something in their skill bracket.
Then they have to go experiment with releasing extra nutrients to phytoplankton in the sea. Ok, mildly more interesting.
Then we get onto the rape scene that seems to divide opinion so much in reviews. Personally, I sit on the fence. I'm not a fan, but I understand that sometimes it sets the scene and drives the plot.
But what does bug me is that Kaitlyn seemed to kick up more of a fuss over Micah's psuedo-rape during training, than actual rape from Shawn.
After that, I quit. I couldn't take any more. It's the first book that I could not finish this year. I got to 86%.
I just... don't get it. What is this book supposed to be? A romance, with the necessary plot movements thrown in? I definitely wouldn't class it as an adventure. It did often feel like a lecture on ecology, with a bit of voodoo thrown in to make it fiction.
Okay, I'm going to stop now.