Thursday, April 2, 2015

Half Wild by Sally Green

Half Wild by Sally Green
Release Date - March 24, 2015
Publisher Website - Penguin Canada
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 400 pages
My Rating - 4/5
**received for an honest review from publisher**


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
"You will have a powerful Gift, but it’s how you use it that will show you to be good or bad."

In a modern-day England where two warring factions of witches live amongst humans, seventeen-year-old Nathan is an abomination, the illegitimate son of the world's most powerful and violent witch. Nathan is hunted from all sides: nowhere is safe and no one can be trusted. Now, Nathan has come into his own unique magical Gift, and he's on the run--but the Hunters are close behind, and they will stop at nothing until they have captured Nathan and destroyed his father.
A young man faces oppression, prejudice, and wishes to fight back. This theme could be plucked from present day issues and is instantly recognizable to everyone. Half Wild takes this theme, mixes in witches, romance and danger to create a sequel that surprises and delights.

Nathan's voice is the element that resonates the most in this story. Sally Green brings this character to life through his voice. Nathan's voice isn't just well written, he's also a complex and engaging character with flaws. He is often selfish when it comes to his reasoning and wants, but he does love fiercely and would die for those who have earned his trust and respect. His character is one that grabs you and lingers. He's been through so much that has scarred him in so many different ways. It's hard to shake his story because you care about him and what happens to him so deeply. It's Sally Green's writing that makes this possible, and it's evident that her skill is in crafting character and voice.

Perhaps the most mysterious element of Half Bad was Marcus, Nathan's father. He was nothing like I expected him to when he finally appeared in end part of Half Bad. After being told how evil and horrible he was for the entire novel, I was surprised to see a subdued man and how patient he was with Nathan. The prophecy is still hanging oppressively over any bond that he and Nathan could form, and that is something that the author is careful to keep as an ominous presence throughout both novels.

Annalise, the girl who has caught Nathan's eye was not my favourite part of the first novel. I found myself wanting Nathan to see what was obvious to everyone else and realize that Gabriel is in love with him. This novel did nothing to derail me from this particular pairing and I find their dynamic must electric, and spark filled than any moment with Annalise. Gabriel and Nathan have actually gotten to know each other, and the unwavering support and love Gabriel offers is incredibly romantic.

With war brewing between those who want peaceful separation between the witch and black witches, and those who would kill all black witches and half bloods there is plenty of danger and action to be found within these pages. Nathan's allegiance seems more out of necessity than a real desire to help. I, however, hope that the true peace comes from the merging of white and black witches. This will, obviously, be easier said than done and Half Wild shows it will take plenty of trust and forgiveness before anything resembling peace can be had. This war already has casualties and I can only imagine the finale will bring more heartache to Nathan and the other characters we've grown to care about.

This series has gotten a lot of buzz and this second instalment once again shows why. It's a captivating, character driven story that continues the journey of a boy looking for where he belongs, who he can trust, and hoping to find his own version of quiet.

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