Sunday, June 26, 2016

Gifted (The Haven Series #1) By: J.A. George

Gifted (The Haven Series #1)
Author: J.A. George
Publisher: Jessica George 2016
Published: April 2016 (First published May 2015)
Format: Paperback
Pages: 340
Rating: 4/5
There is no chosen one in this story. 

Avery Gray was just in the wrong place at the wrong time and happened to make a decision that altered her future forever. It happens to all of us every day. 

Avery is a size twelve university student with a penchant for dry humor, and she’s as normal as they come. Up until now, the biggest choice she’s had to make was glasses or contacts? At the moment, it’s stay and save, or leave and be saved. 

Allow me to explain. One rainy afternoon, Avery had to make a choice: go through the alleyway or around it. Two possible options. One would have had her future continue on as planned, the other would ensure that her future never remained the same again. She unknowingly went with the latter. 

But change is not always bad. Avery meets Theodore-James Connors, an enigmatic young man who takes her to Hayven, a city separated from the rest of the world, where only gifters – ordinary people with extra-ordinary gifts – can go. She soon finds herself in a close-knit group of friends she’d never have imagined herself in. Friends who are diverse in every possible way, from their ethnic backgrounds, to their personalities, from their gifts, to their life stories. Friends who make her laugh, who make her cry, who make her think and who make her…her. 

However, change is not always good. The beautiful, golden city of Hayven has its dark side – Cliders. Gifters turned rogue, aka, Cliders are determined to aid fallen Clider, Madrina, return to rule Hayven. They will stop at nothing to make that happen, including harming those Ava has grown to love. 

Again, Ava is faced with a choice: spend her days finding a way to inhibit Madrina’s return, or walk away. After all, she isn’t the chosen one. Yet, there exists a third option – rig the future itself and make it work for her.
First let me say thank you to J.A. George for sending me a copy of Gifted for an honest review. Let me also say that this was definitely hard to rate. I initially had it for 3-3.5 stars because there were certain parts which I will explain, that had me more towards that rating. But as I got to the end, SO MUCH happened that really made the book so much better, and left me wanting more.

So starting off with the book, I found it to be kind of slow. There was a lot of description within the first couple hundred pages that almost didn't need to be added in there, that I found it hard at times to continue reading. (but I am so glad that I did!) There were of course certain parts where I felt like the characters didn't make much sense. There would be a scene where it's all talk about this special ability that Ava has, and then it breaks into more of a modern romance. The book itself is a Romance Fantasy, so that's exactly what I go to some extent. Personally, I really liked both the Fantasy part, and the romance part, but feel like it could have been blended more than it was.

wtf color emma stone self ginger

Moving on from that, I do have to say that as the story progressed, wow! Not only was there this awkward love triangle-ish shape going on, but there were a lot of parts where I thought it would go one way, and it never did! I got caught off guard with some of the twists and turns that happened in this novel and I LOVED IT! It honestly made the book so crazy, but in such a good way!

It actually started diving more into both aspects of romance and fantasy, and getting really intense. I don't think I've ever laughed out loud so much or gasped from certain scenes going DOWN! Like can I just take a second to talk about Summer... From the first time she was introduced in here, I literally wanted to be Ava, only for reasons I cannot explain unless you've read it! There was an entire scene where it felt like a huge cat-fight, and let me say that honestly had me on the edge of my seat hoping that Ava would do something to show she wasn't going to take any of it! AND IT WENT DOWN!

oh snap

Moving from Summer and Ava, I need to obviously dive into Ava and Theo... Like COME ON! I was rooting for them from the beginning, and you and so tell that they have a thing for one another. Another "Oh Snap" moment would have been when Bales (Theo and Ava's good friend) went in a roundabout way to confess a secret--even though it was SO obvious!--it was probably the best thing, and something I would so see in a movie!

Also there's Ava and Alfie. Poor guy got friend-zoned so hard! I think that the fact that Ava had her special gift that no one except the group of friends in Hayven know about, made the novel really exciting. Being able to do what she was able to do, and getting to read it all was actually super fun. Made me feel almost as if I was invading their privacy, as I'm sure Ava thought, but super funny!

I really found it interesting to read about basically two worlds. There was the world that Ava was used to all her life (her normal world) and then there was the world of Hayven. Being able to immediately transport the way they do was so cool, and when there were certain scenes where they needed to move around, I found it to be intense! Like no mortal could see you just appear out of thin air...
face wow omg surprised adam devine

I did find sometimes while reading Gifted as well, that there were a lot of characters. Not that it was a bad thing at all, but I found that there were more and more characters being brought into the story, sometimes too late, or with no real explanation as to how they showed up. Like some of them kind of just appeared and had a brief description. It didn't take long though for me to get used to them, and understand them more, but odd that they just appeared mid story.

I really liked Bales as well as Everett. They both definitely had their own aspects to the story, and Everett was like a cute and hilarious grandpa, where Bales was the friend that you grow to be besties. Both were seriously super funny, and found myself laughing more so at their parts with Ava than anything else! 

Personally anything with Bales, had me laughing. The way she is, kind of reminds me of myself a little bit (very little) and she always says whatever is on her mind, which I LOVED!

So there were a few quotes that I found interesting! They really resonated with the novel, and were pretty cool to read!

"Trust only a few and look out for the rainbow at the end."

"This was just the beginning."

"It was a grim way to live, I know, but I'd rather a dreamless sleep than a nightmare."

Can we also just discuss this cliffhanger here! I mean COME ON! I was expecting there to be one, because it's part of a series, but seriously! Just as it gets to probably the most intense part, it literally just ends leaving you wanting more! I loved and hated it, because cliffhangers are so....

Overall this was a pretty good book! Although there were parts that I felt lacked, J. A. George pulled through and made the other half of this novel super! I seriously want to read book two right now, but unfortunately, Like everyone else, I have to wait... It was packed with so much emotion, the usual girl issues, and of course the lead man that everyone wants. Add in the fact that Ava has a gift, and must decide whether to leave it alone and go back to her mortal life, or to help her new found world, makes it that much more thrilling!

That's all for my review today! I hope you enjoyed it!

So until the next time, Keep Reading!!
Your Graduated Bookworm!! :)

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