Author: Alexandra May
Publisher: Pauma Publishing
Release Date: July 22nd, 2011
Source: Author+Publisher for review (Thank you!)
ROSE Frost receives a bracelet on her sixteenth birthday, a parting gift from her mother who claims it is a family heirloom. From that night Rose starts having vivid dreams and strange visions.
DAYS after, her family separate and Rose moves into her grandmother's house. Her dreams start to involve a woman called Halíka Dacomé. Is she a legend or a figment of her imagination?
DANGER strikes one night. Rose is first on the scene after she smells burning and discovers a car that has been purposely set on fire. She is convinced that the boy in her latest vision is inside the car. The mysterious Aiden Deverill pulls Rose to safety, but not before a window explodes and a ball of fire burns them both. She uses her secret healing gift to heal the scars and to all appearances remains unscathed.
But Aiden is free from burns too and Rose doesn't know why.
She is drawn to his alluring smile, his gorgeous dark looks and hypnotising blue eyes, but as they get closer her friends warn her off claiming that he's bad news.
Rose tries to find the truth about Halika Dacomé and more about why Aiden is so disliked, but she soon gets drawn into helping her friends solve the mystery behind the missing Warminster townsfolk. The latest missing person is her new friend Jez's father.
During the investigation she meets Morgan, a family friend of Daisy's who lives in the cottage at the bottom of Daisy's garden. He's kind, funny and clearly devoted to her, but Rose finds out that his hatred towards Aiden and his grandfather, Ben Deverill, lies rooted in a shocking event that happened years before involving both families.
For Rose, her new life is beginning but she soon realises that people are not always what they seem, and finds it difficult to determine who to trust.
What she always believed to be a happy family and a friendly town soon turns on its head when she discovers that her family secret, Aiden Deverill and the truth behind Halíka Dacomé is at the heart of the whole conspiracy.
Elemental started off strongly; there was something mysteriously engrossing about the prologue, and I was able to instantly dive into the captivating world of Elemental the First. I was so curious to unravel the mystery surrounding Rose’s heritage and also how this infamous Halika Decome and Rose are related. The premise was also really interesting; a powerful Elemental, the first human on earth reincarnation in the form of a human girl with an unusual and unique gift. Sound fascinating, right? However,what was initially a plot-driven story soon molded to focus largely on typical teenage issues; love, jealousy, betrayal, outings etc. Although the plot was not entirely forgotten -there were of course scenes every now and then dedicated to the central storyline- when I recall the book as a whole the romance and friends gathering moments took precedence over the actual plot.
The romance. What can I say? It was certainly another one of those typical love triangles involving the good guy (Morgan) and the bad guy (Aiden). *sigh* Unsurprisingly, both guys were hot and sexy and readers are obviously suppose to be breathless with excitement, squealing about how hot they are and how it’s too hard to choose between the two. Too bad, I’m over unoriginal love triangles. Truthfully, the story would’ve still worked out perfectly without the romance between Morgan and Rose, since Aiden is a whole lot more important and played a larger role in the book. I just hope in the next book Rose won’t be running from one to the other, trying to decide who she wants to be with.
One of the main problems I had with the book was the dialogue between Rose and her new friends. Being teenagers, there was obviously gossip, talks of boys, school and everything you would expect to arise in a teen discussion. Unfortunately the conversations felt unnatural and forced; while the content was certainly suitable, the tone and the way everything was said gave me the impression that it was an adult trying to speak like a child, or at least like someone much younger. I guess when you read the lines separately, they would seem perfectly natural, but when I read the entire conversation from beginning to end, the words and sentences just felt out of place. I’ll admit, the dialogue was too awkward for my liking.
All in all, despite the many flaws, I did enjoy Elemental:The First as a whole. The mystery surrounding Rose was intriguing, as was the strange connections between everyone in the book. Give it a go, I’m sure many of you will enjoy this! I am looking forward to book 2, since there were many unanswered questions and I sure want to find out what happens next!
Rating: 3.5 stars