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Review: Chasing Power (Sarah Beth Durst)

The Deets: 

Audience: YA
Pages: 368
Publisher: October 14th 2014 by Bloomsbury
ISBN: 9780802737564
Genre: fantasy, mystery, adventure
Source: eARC from NetGalley

Chasing PowerLies, secrets, and magic — three things that define Kayla's life.

Sixteen-year-old Kayla plans to spend her summer hanging out on the beach in Santa Barbara and stealing whatever she wants, whenever she wants it. Born with the ability to move things with her mind — things like credit cards, diamond rings, and buttons on cash registers — she has become a master shoplifter. She steals to build up a safety net, enough money for her and her mom to be able to flee if her dad finds them again. Well, that, and the thrill of using her secret talents.

But her summer plans change when she's caught stealing by a boy named Daniel — a boy who needs her help and is willing to blackmail her to get it. Daniel has a talent of his own. He can teleport, appearing anywhere in the world in an instant, but he lies as easily as he travels. Together, they embark on a quest to find and steal an ancient incantation, written on three indestructible stones and hidden millennia ago, all to rescue Daniel's kidnapped mother. But Kayla has no idea that this rescue mission will lead back to her own family — and to betrayals that she may not be able to forgive... or survive.

One of life's greatest mysteries is how an author like Sarah Beth Durst can write a plethora of books, and yet, each one is unique and vastly different from the others. This woman never ceases to amaze me. 

Let me just begin by saying one of the things I LOVE about Sarah Beth Durst's books is the protagonists. They are always clever, strong-willed young women. This is a writer that empowers girls. It's wonderful. Kayla in Chasing Power was another strong female lead in a long list of kick-butt heroines. 

Chasing Power reminded me of the old X-Men cartoons I would watch as a kid on Saturday mornings. At first, I figured that was what I would get with the characters, too; I was wrong. Yes, Kayla and Daniel have super human abilities, but their adventures are more than just exploits of their power. There was a deep rooted family connection for both characters that influenced their actions. It's hard to explain much without giving things away, but you really want to root for both characters to get their happy endings. 

Aside from the characters and witty dialogue (one of the things I love the most about Sarah Beth Durst's books), I was really captivated by the Mayan mystery aspect. I do not know anything about the Mayans. Nada. Zilch. But the locations described and unique artifacts that were being sought after sure makes me want to learn more! Kayla's first visit to an ancient Mayan temple made me realize I was in for a very surprising read. 

The pacing in Chasing Power is pretty quick. The adventures are non-stop. The romance between Kayla and Daniel is slow building and believable (thank you!). All-in-all, this is a fun read that you should definitely check out.
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  1. I'm new the Sarah's books (I've only read Vessel) but this one sounds fabulous! I especially love the XMeny elements, thanks for the review!: )

  2. You'll really enjoy her writing! Each book is so unique.


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Product Details

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Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: Square Fish (August 21, 2007)
ISBN-10: 9780312369828
Source: My personal book

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