09 novembro 2011

Review: Mercy (Rebecca Lim)

Publisher:  HarperCollins (2010)
Format: Paperback | 281 pages
Genre(s): Urban Fantasy, Young Adult
Description (GR): "An electric combination of angels, mystery and romance, MERCY is the first book in a major new paranormal series.

There's something very wrong with me. I can't remember who I am or how old I am, or even how I got here. All I know is that when I wake up, I could be any one. It is always this way. There's nothing I can keep with me that will stay. It's made me adaptable. I must always re-establish ties. I must tread carefully or give myself away. I must survive.
"
WARNING: Contains SPOILERS! 
"Mercy" is an 'angel book'. And I don't usually have much luck with books about angels; I disliked "Hush, Hush" immensely, thought "Fallen" was awful and was even disappointed with "A Touch Mortal". The only exception was "Unearthly" which I thought was a real breath of fresh air.

So I've had "Mercy" on my shelf for a while now but I've been a bit weary of reading it. All this to say that I picked this book up with strong reservations but it ended being a great read!

Mercy doesn't know who or what she is; not really. She doesn't even know if her name is Mercy. She only knows that she takes over random people's bodies again and again, living borrowed life after borrowed life without having any control over when she wakes up in a different one.
She's been living like this for what is seems like forever, losing old memories and building new ones. The only thing that keeps her anchored are her dream conversations with beautiful Luc.

When Mercy wakes up in the body of teenager Carmen Zappacosta she prepares herself for a new life and a new set of memories. She soon becomes immersed in Carmen's life, an insecure girl who sings at a choir and is boarding with a family torn apart by the disappearance of their daughter, Lauren, two years ago. While pretending to be Carmen, Mercy tries to find out what happened with the help of Lauren's twin brother Ryan and at the same time begins to piece together what happened to her.

So... why is "Mercy" different from other YA books with angels?
Rebecca Lim did a brilliant job when creating Mercy that's why. Most YA paranormals feature a supernatural character that is hundreds of years old, but they don't act it. They act like teenagers. Which I can understand, to a point. These books try to appeal to young adult readers after all.
But Lim shows us that you can write a character who's very old and in a teen's body but still realistic. Mercy's voice is weary, tired of life, sardonic at times. She's been through a lot, through lives and it shows. At the same time, the fact that she loses her memories makes her lack the sort of wisdom an immortal being would have. She experiences things over and over again but they never lose their 'freshness' completely. As such she is always level with humans.

Mercy was then, the reason I loved this book so much. Her characterization is great. Other characters are interesting as well, sufficiently multi-layered (especially Ryan and his parents), but Mercy was the real stroke of genius.

As for the story, I liked it well enough. The "mystery" was pretty straightforward, although I must say that the author made me doubt my suspicions once or twice; still the villain ended being who I thought it was.
I preferred to read about Mercy's journey to find herself and her identity. It's not yet over, because she doesn't really know everything, but it seems to be shaping up to be a rather epic and engrossing story.

That's why I'll be getting the rest of the books as soon as possible.

Overall, "Mercy" was, like "Unearthly" a breath of fresh air. I loved Mercy as a character and as the protagonist; she was strong and focused, not flighty like so many heroines in YA books. I really liked what I glimpsed of her story and I want to know more. There is almost no romance in this book, so probably not everyone will enjoy it if they like romance with their books, but I loved the story just the way it was. Recommended!

4 comentários :

WhiteLady3 disse...

YA without romance?! *is curious*

slayra disse...

Yep. Very curious isn't it?

p7 disse...

Vi este livro há uns tempos na Fnac e fiquei curiosa, mas como não tenho visto muitas opiniões por aí nunca mais me lembrei dele. xD Fico contente, e mais interessada, por saber que afinal é bom! :)

slayra disse...

Eu comprei-o exactamente na FNAC... provavelmente o mesmo exemplar, lol. :D