"THE LOST SAINT," by Bree Despain, Egmont USA, 416 pages, $17.99
If you haven't read "The Dark Divine," you'll probably be a little lost in "The Lost Saint" as the main character, Grace, tries to deal with the loss of her brother Jude and her changing abilities.
(She can run really fast and she occasionally wants to tear someone's head off.)
But there are enough clues and assists along the way that make it all right to be a novice in the series.
Still, it doesn't rise to the realm of the "Twilight" books — if that's what a reader expects.
"The Lost Saint" is a story that includes werewolves, other-worldly creatures and even a forbidden romance, but it somehow fails to fully engage. (Maybe you have to be an impressionable young adult.)
Grace goes about trying to figure out what happened to her sibling and what's going on with her boyfriend, Daniel. But she never really knows what the story is.
She's frustrated because no one wants to fill her in — and that becomes a frustration for the reader as well.
Grace trains in secret with a questionable, handsome character named Talbot, who wants more than friendship from her.
Grace has unusual strength and impressive abilities, and as her confidence increases, she wants to use her powers for good as a Hound of Heaven.
The trouble is, there are plenty of dark forces at work and other plans in motion. Grace's father, her boyfriend and an 830-year-old mentor of sorts want her to stand clear.
Paying reason no mind, Grace charges ahead. The action is almost breathtaking — almost — as she battles for her brother, her boyfriend and, toward the end, her very life.
The problem is, the reader doesn't have a real reason to care. Maybe those familiar with the "Dark Divine" series know more and thus care more, but from this reviewer's perspective, Grace is just someone who careens from one crisis to another, and it doesn't really matter.
In addition, the typeface is dark and large, which makes for an awkward read.
It's really too bad because somewhere in here is a good story trying to get out.
Sharon Haddock is a freelance writer who has been a staff writer for The Deseret News for 17 years. She has a blog called Grandma's Place: sharonhaddock.blogspot.com
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