Thursday, January 16, 2020

Infinity Son by Adam Silvera

Infinity Son by Adam Silvera
Release Date - January 14, 2020
Publisher Website - Harper Collins Canada
Publisher Social Media - Twitter/Facebook/SavvyReader/Frenzy
Pages -  368 pages
My Rating - 3.5/5
**received from the publisher for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Balancing epic and intensely personal stakes, bestselling author Adam Silvera’s Infinity Son is a gritty, fast-paced adventure about two brothers caught up in a magical war generations in the making.

Growing up in New York, brothers Emil and Brighton always idolized the Spell Walkers—a vigilante group sworn to rid the world of specters. While the Spell Walkers and other celestials are born with powers, specters take them, violently stealing the essence of endangered magical creatures.

Brighton wishes he had a power so he could join the fray. Emil just wants the fighting to stop. The cycle of violence has taken a toll, making it harder for anyone with a power to live peacefully and openly. In this climate of fear, a gang of specters has been growing bolder by the day.

Then, in a brawl after a protest, Emil manifests a power of his own—one that puts him right at the heart of the conflict and sets him up to be the heroic Spell Walker Brighton always wanted to be.

Brotherhood, love, and loyalty will be put to the test, and no one will escape the fight unscathed
They Both Die At The End teased how Adam Silvera might create a fantasy world. I expected a familiar urban setting with the magical world built around it. That is exactly what you get in Infinity Son. It also feels a touch familiar which, for me, added a level of comfort to reading this story.

The world building is pivotal to any fantasy story and the foundation is being built here. I just don't feel like it was fully fleshed out. Silvera has taken a world we know and overlaid a world of magic, mythical creatures, and fate. The way modern technology is woven in with all of the fantasy elements worked for me. It felt natural that the online world would capitalize on knowing people with magical abilities exist and use it as a means to gain clout and followers. The various ways power can be obtained and the consequences of that are each so unique and yet tied together by other elements in the story and the various factions who want that power. I, however, do hope that the actual fantasy elements are further fleshed out and explored in the sequels. It has a lot of potential and I hope it expands and answers some of the questions I am left with as it is the aspect I most wanted more from.

The sibling connection between Emil and Brighton reads as entirely authentic. They love each other but also have moments of conflict. There is a hint of sibling rivalry and competition as well. They don't always agree or see things the same way and that is part of what motivates both of them. You never doubt their love for each other but also recognize there is underlying friction there.

The brothers are basically polar opposites which often causes any friction they do have. Emil is the more serious, more reserved brother. He doesn't want to be part of this war that seems determined to pull him in. Brighton on the other hand is outgoing, impulsive, reckless, and would love nothing more than to jump into the fight. One wants the worries of the world on their shoulders while the other just wants to be left in peace. It makes for an interesting butting of heads when they clash because both of them have a point if you view it from their perspective.

One of my favourite elements is a ship that develops during the course of the novel. The way it is built and teased as the story progressed ensured a delightful tension. It is one of my favourite tropes (the telling of which would spoil the experience of seeing this relationship unfold) and I ended up becoming very invested in what happens to these two characters.

This book boasts a large cast of characters and not all of them get enough page time to flesh them out as fully as I would have liked. The emotional beats did not always land as deeply as they should have because I didn't feel as attached to certain characters. The characters are there for a reason and do serve a purpose, I just don't know if they will resonate with readers as much as the story hopes they do.

The ending is tailor made to make you immediately want to go grab book two. It is the kind of ending that leaves a reader in awe and desperate to return to the world they were just pulled out of. It sets the stage for an even more complex and tense sequel and promises lots of action.

Fans of Silvera's previous work will find plenty of the elements he is known for within these pages. It has the writing, pacing, and emotional core that you have come to expect. It may have more magic than you are used to but I predict even those not used to reading fantasy will fall under this book's spell.

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