I mentioned a few weeks ago that I have been remiss in my YA book reading. I happened to find Brittany DeLys requesting reviewers for Just A Touch on Goodreads and I liked the description of this story. I lucked out because she was looking for ten reviewers and I think from the look of the amount of people who had replied to the post, I snuck in under the wire. I guess you could say I had a “touch” of luck.
…I know! I agree with you! I don’t know why I always go for the obvious puns. It’s an automatic thing. I blame something chromosomal!
Arianna is special… not little bus special, more like she can pull bullets out of someone’s chest special. Yeah, baby, this chick is magnetic. Well, no not really–but she is special and something about her really has been drawing Chase Melina in ever since he laid eyes on her. He doesn’t know why he was sent to protect her but he does know that the feelings he has for her aren’t impersonal and merely that of a Guardian and a Chosen.
When the hot new boy shows up at school and appears to be interested in her Arianna does what any girl would do… she is rude, ignores him and then humiliates him in front of everyone at a party. It’s not that she doesn’t find him yummy. It’s not that she wouldn’t mind returning the attention. It’s the fact that it’s her last year of school and she would like to survive it without any waves, any type of indignity or trouble that she could not otherwise avoid; in this case it means avoiding Chase Melina. Until… they are kidnapped together and he tries to tell her that she can heal people and that she is a Chosen and he was sent to protect her. All she wanted to do was graduate and leave Baker’s Ridge and all it’s drama and now that dream of a future seems trivial compared to the mess she is in.
The lore of the story is very well developed and there were times where I was raising an eyebrow wondering just how Brittany would be able to manage the curves and dips of the plot she had created but was very happy with how it came together. I have concerns about the size of the cast of characters she is introducing and how it might later become unwieldy to handle. That is something I will just have to wait on and see how continuity plays out. The second member of the Triad was very obvious to me but I’ve become more and more keyed into plot devices after reading thousands of books and reviewing, critiquing and looking at them as parts rather than whole things. I don’t know if it would be as obvious for most readers to pick out the second Triad member.
There were a couple things that I wished had been worked on more about Just A Touch before it were published. The story is a very solid and itself needs no help or changes. What the book does suffer for is the lack of proper editing. It is not enough to have beta readers who let you know if your story is good if they cannot let you know if your sentence structure, word usage, and scenes make sense. There is a sentence in chapter 22 that begs for editing that says, “The letter goes into some detail about the Triad but is vague.” I see what Brittany meant to convey with the meaning of the sentence but in truth the sentence says two different things. One other part in chapter 27 is just a mistaken word but a beta or editor should have picked up on this and pointed it out to Brittany to fix it. “Well, at least your sense of humor is still in tacked.”
It’s the plague of independent authors to go through growing pains and as you write and publish more books you gain more experience; your writing and the way that you deal with writing, post writing, and pre-publishing develops. I have all the faith in the world that an author that can produce a novel with this quality storytelling will do great things as she becomes more familiar with what is involved with self-publishing or indie publishing companies. Just A Touch is well worth the read.
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