Paranormalcy is the first book in a trilogy by Kiersten White. The hardback was released on 31st August 2010 by Harper Teen with the paperback due for release in January 2011. Paranormalcy is 352 pages long.
Evie always thought she was normal. As normal as she could be working for the International Paranormal Containment Agency (IPCA), having a faerie as an ex boyfriend and being the only person in the entire world who can see through a paranormal’s glamours. Oh and her best friend is a mermaid. Completely normal, right?
When strange things begin to happen at the Agency and a strange paranormal gets taken into their custody, Evie immediately wants to know more but there seems to be things that everyone isn’t telling her. The new paranormal knows a lot and when Evie befriends him, she realises that she may not actually be as normal as she first thought.
What I thought
Paranormalcy has got to be one of the most original YA books that I have read for some time. Instead of sticking to conventional ideas when it comes to fantasy and the paranormal, Kiersten White used these idea but mixed them with things I would have never thought about. As much as I like reading about vampires and werewolves, this genre does need to be kept fresh and exciting and I think the author has achieved that with this book.
Evie was such a refreshing heroine because she was unlike anyone else I had ever read about. After watching the first episode of Nikita last night, it kind of reminded me of that. Evie has been living with and working for IPCA since she was 8 years old and has never really known any other life apart from the one she is currently living. IPCA is a pretty weird place to begin with as it is an agency that rehabilitates the paranormal. Then there is the fact that her best friend is a mermaid who can only talk through a computer. If that doesn’t sound strange enough then there is the fact that Evie goes to hunt the paranormal with her cute pink taser gun called Tasey! I really loved the fact that no matter what was going on around her, Evie tried to be as normal as possible and always make it home in time to catch her favourite show on TV, making her have extremely real teenager qualities. This was something that I was thankful for because sometimes authors seem to forget about normal, everyday teenager activities.
The only real reason that Evie works for IPCA is because she has a special gift. She is able to see through what paranormals really are and ignore their glamours, making them easier to catch. I felt really sorry for Evie having all this to deal with at only 16 and couldn’t imagine what I would have done with only TV shows for real entertainment. Evie is quite the kick ass heroine because of her job but I also really liked the way that she was so girly. Her room is full of pink things and she has high heeled zebra print boots, always wanting to look her best even if she is out hunting. I would have been going insane in her position but Evie tries to find the best in each situation and make the best out of what she has.
The story really starts to kick off when a new paranormal infiltrates IPCA who can take on the form of someone else. Even Evie has problems looking past his glamour and doesn’t understand what he is and what he can do. Even though she is the one who captures him, she cannot help but feel drawn to finding out more about him. The new paranormal, Lend, refuses to talk to anyone about what he is or why he was at IPCA in the first place but when Evie befriends him, everything starts to unravel and we get to see more of who Lend really is. I really enjoyed this part of the book because I love to know more about the main characters and this was a great chance to learn about both Lend and Evie. In many other YA books, the romance happens far too quickly for my liking, making it unbelievable, but this time around. I was so thankful for something to blossom from friendship and develop as time went on. More books should be like this.
The story itself was extremely interesting because the ideas were so new and original to me. It started off well from the first page and I never felt disappointed with it at any time. Paranormalcy starts off very funny and the humour is kept throughout, even though there is a lot of important and serious things going on. Kiersten White managed to make this book really fun, when it could have been more on the intense and dark side of things. I liked that the story was kept light-hearted throughout which gave an opportunity to get to know the characters well. I think this really helped to set the scene for the next book in the series which could probably end up being more action packed.
The plot had a lot of mystery and I really enjoyed this. I never fully knew what was happening or what was about to happen until things were revealed. I love to be kept guessing and for there to be multiple possibilities so in this aspect, Paranormalcy really did it for me. This will be part of a trilogy so not everything was answered but I didn’t mind that at all. I liked not knowing where the story was heading and not being able to really think too much about what the next book will have in store for us.
I had been looking forward to this book for quite a while and was so happy when I won it in a giveaway on a blog. I planned to only read a couple of chapters one night but next thing I knew, it was 1am and I was quite near the end so I just kept going. Usually even when I love a book, there are still things that bug me about it, whether it be a character or something to do with the plot. This was one of the first books in a really long time that I had no little niggles with at all. Everything about it was amazing and I would happily read it again tomorrow. Paranormalcy is such an amazing book that I just couldn’t put down and I would highly recommend it.