Ladies and gentlemen, you'd want to read this book. You ladies will sigh and swoon over and enjoy the romance between soulfinders - and the gents can note down a few pointers from the Benedict boys. I was yearning for good YA romance novel when I started Finding Sky and I got exactly what I needed. It was the cure to and signalled the end of my reading break!
When I mention 'good YA romance', I'd like to emphasise on 'good'. I don't favour romances without substance and am often critical of those whose transition from attraction to love is lightning quick - Finding Sky is neither of those. Although primarily a book about soulmates, you won't find the characters falling head over heels in love in the span of a few pages. The romance isn't sappy or boring, nor plain or forgettable. It highlights the most important aspects of romance in a way that is real and tangible to every reader - trust, comfort, acceptance. The romantic tension arrives in a different form; I welcomed the break from the usual and the stereo-typical.
The narrator, Sky Bright, is one of the few characters I can personally relate to. Joss Stirling has captured exactly how it feels to move out of your comfort zone; believe me, I have been there myself. Her descriptions of Sky's thought and emotional process is spot on, never straying or exaggerating from just the precise feeling or thought. The author's description of trauma is vivid, real and true. Without the jargon to weigh it down, it is portrayed in a way that is accessible to every reader. Interestingly, the themes and motifs of this book is channelled through Sky, so in that sense she is very diverse character indeed. Of course, a special girl needs a special boy - enter Zed Benedict. Zed is a peculiar boy - he is broody, mysterious and a bad boy at the beginning. But as the book progresses and the reader unravels what it is that makes Zed so mysterious, we see a complete change in him. This turnaround underscores the concept of a soulfinder and results in a courtship between him and Sky -a courtship so romantic it easily surpasses many YA romance books out there.
Finding Sky is written impeccably well. The literary devices - particularly the metaphors and similes - used are fresh and brilliant. The contrast between the British usage and American usage of English words and phrases are also distinct and well-highlighted. Towards the end, it falters, but it can be explained through Sky's adaptation of the American usage, given that she is in fact already across the pond.
I have minor complaints - for instance, the tension in the plot is present but could be stronger. There are also quite a few sub plots I wanted to be explored further (not to mention a few more kisses between Sky and Zed), but I am hoping for a sequel because although it ends neatly, I am not quite ready to let it go!
With an emotional and psychological edge to a very interesting concept of meeting one's soul mate, this romantic debut will delight many of you readers out there.
on 29 September 2011
I really thought I was in for a special read after skimming all the rave reviews, unfortunately I found this book a disappointment. Before I get in to the reasons, I want to say that I loved the premise and I loved the first few chapters, so I honestly gave this book a chance. Ok, so we are introduced to Sky and her adoptive parents, an intriguing back story is hinted at and she is about to start at a new school in a new country, so far so good. Sky encounters Zed - a moody looking biker that barely spares her a second glance, and she is not the smartest in the class. Those are the things I loved about the book.
The things I disliked were numerous. Maybe some spoilers ahead.
There was barely any kind of chemistry established between Sky and Zed, before or after the convenient plot device that is being soulfinders, the whole thing is used as an excuse to not make any kind of effort with their dialogue or romance. It was dull beyond comprehension whenever they chatted.
But wait good old 'soulfinder plot device' isn't finished, once it is established that whenever you meet your match, you will fall instantly in love and utterly devoted to each other, apparently it can also fix pesky personality traits.
Zed is neutered and turned in to the most generic "good guy" humanly possible. Why do writers insist on force feeding teenage girls with "insert name here" love interests? Ok, so now Zed has been made as non-threatening as the Easter bunny, let's see what happened to Sky's personality? Well in a word - nothing. She didn't have a personality, so there was really nothing to build on. All the way through this book and I am ashamed to say the sequel as well, I got the impression that the author loved writing the guy characters more than the girls. The boys were faster, stronger, smarter and the girls hung around and responded appropriately to stimulus. Maybe the author was going for the old bare bones narrator approach so maybe the reader would feel like it could be them? I don't know.
I agree with another review on here as well, that points out serious deficit in teenage shenanigans. It's a trend I have noticed with mainy American authors (although not exclusively apparently) that is so repugnant. No smoking, no drinking, no swearing, no sex, no pulse. Teenagers for the most part are not this Disney-fied ideal imagined by parents, their lives are messy and impulsive and exciting, though apparently, not in this book
on 8 October 2010
this isn't going to be a badly long review that details the entire book for you, so that you no longer have to read it to gather any information.
but i will merely say. this is a good, hard-not-to-love book, about love and friendship and about find out the most about yourself, and learning to trust and love, even when you believe deep down you cant. it is beautifully written, and it is so nice to see something wrote by a british writer. i recommend this book as i have read books by many authors for YA, and this book is up there with the rest.... i just hope that we hear more from Sky and Zed. because i don't feel that this could be a final end to their story.
if you secretly love the hard to handle love of Bella and Edward (Twilight) and Rose and Dimitri (VA) but also the action life style of Zoe and Stark(House of night), and cant help but fall the for bad-boy-thats-secretly-good like Luce and Daniel (Fallen) then this is defiantly a book for you. Don't hesitate. You will miss out.
- hope this helped a little.
good and faithfully reader.
Finding Sky is definitely different that's for sure. It may have a typical boy-meets-girl and they fall in love thing, but the ideas behind it are really quite something. I've gotten so used to reading brilliant young adult fiction at the moment that it's hard to come by anything especially new or interesting but you know what, I'd never heard of a SoulFinder before. And that was more than enough to keep me glued to the very pages through the night.
Sky, our British leading lady, is okay. I didn't like her as much as I would have wanted to but she was quite funny which was nice. Zed, our leading American man, is better. Sky has moved to America with her family so is starting a new school. Now, this aspect of any young adult story is always something I love. Any mention of new schools, boarding schools or the like really interest me because we then get to learn everything from scratch along with the main characters which makes it more enjoyable from my perspective. As you might expect, Zed is beatifully hansome and arrogant whilst Sky is shy and a hidden beauty. BUT, little does Sky know, she's anything but ordinary. And neither is Zed.
After everything eventually goes as you anticipate, Sky is introduced to Zed's massive, and quirky, family. All of which seem to have a little more to them than initially seems. I won't explain what exactly Zed, his family and Sky are but what I will say is they all have very interesting abilities which are entirely explainable but VERY unique to the YA genre. The concept of the SoulFinder is equally interesting - two people who are destined to be together based on a particular feeling or sensation the two feel. In essence two halves of a whole that very rarely find each other in reality because of the vast population and small liklihood of these exact two individuals ever meeting.
I do recommend this book because it is new and it is interesting but I have to say that, on a negative note: It was so incredibly predictable once the initial concept was explained. On top of that, I didn't buy into Zed's typical bad boy character nor did I really like the typical girl with low self-esteem and hidden cuteness. The thing is, Stirling had such a great idea that was really unique and I think she kind of spoiled it with her typical characters. Overall, a good read, but I didn't like the characters enough to care about the sequel.
on 12 March 2015
This book was utterly draining... and not in the good way.
Let me start off by saying I was really excited to get this book and had to shop around to find it. I ordered it from a seller on it and it arrived early. The moment I opened the book and began to read I knew I had made a mistake. The book was exhausting, overly long, over 97% padding, crammed with needless dribbles and almost no information on the characters.
I found it so hard to picture them when I normally picture characters very easily. They were just like faded blurs.
One minute you were reading and they were saying no, absolutely no way, it's very happening and having a raging fit, literally two sentences from another character who said "everything will be okay" and suddenly they're happy and skipping through the fields pulling a complete u-turn and everything is wonderful and they have no more qualms about something they hated literally two seconds ago.
Some of the phrases did not even make sense through the book, just the way they were written it was like "the mat cat sat on it" and there were quite a few spelling errors.
The whole idea of the story was nice but there was so little drama, it was hazy, exhausting and I really didn't enjoy this book. I am a young adult reading this and do not recommend it to anyone. It's worse than The Raven Boys.
The characters are all very real and likeable, the story moves at a good pace and is well worth a read.
The Benedict family are extremely likeable and extremely swoon worthy, so too is Sky.
The whole story is based around savants who are all gifted in various ways, seeing the future, igniting fires etc and their search for their other half or soul finder. It's a great fun romance that I and my teen daughters thoroughly enjoyed.
on 8 October 2010
I really, really loved Finding Sky!
I love the characters, especially Sky and Zed and the development of their relationship (I love the way the romance is told, so beautiful)I really became attached to them. I also liked the suspense. I'm happy that the book is something different than most books.
Can't wait for the next book!
on 2 February 2015
I didn't know much about this before I bought it a couple of months back, only that it had good ratings on here and Goodreads. I tend to trust these ratings although every once in a while, my rating isn't the same as everyone else's.
As is the case with this.
I really liked the Benedict family as a whole, they were all really nice people. Even Sky was pretty cool but something didn't gel with me and the storyline. There wasn't a sense of urgency to find out what the secret was with Zed and his family. I wasn't that bothered about finding out what happened in Sky's past. The ending wasn't as exciting as I wanted it to be.
It was just so-so.
I'd probably only carry on with the series to read more of the Benedict family.
Clearly lots of reviewers have loved this book, but I found it clunky and over-familiar, a mish-mash of characters and plot devices from other supernatural romance books. So there is a family, for example, of Benedicts who all have individual powers like the Cullens, set against another clan with powers of their own.
Characters are very skimpy: Sky, the new English girl in high-school; Zed, the inevitable `bad boy' (who isn't bad at all), and the transition from `we hate each other' to `we're soulmates for life' happens in a flash, and there's none of the chemistry between our couple that there is in better examples of this genre:Fallen, for example, or Hush, Hush above all. There are also great holes in the `action' plot; and a lot of the dialogue feels overly self-conscious and try-hard.
So this isn't a terrible book, but it's an obvious attempt to take elements that have worked elsewhere and put them back together in a supposedly fresh way. It didn't work for me in the slightest... but clearly does for others.
on 25 July 2011
I have to admit that when I first came across Finding Sky on the bookshelf, I didn't exactly comply with the ruling `Don't judge a book by its cover' - in fact, on seeing the complex entwining of the vines and the classic contrast in colours, my hands instinctively sought out the novel. But don't get me wrong. I soon found more than one reason to take this book home with me. As a hopeless romantic (as defined by Google), I loved the concept of this book - two people, destined to be together, yet the odds are stacked against them, and obstacles are thrown at every corner. Just when you think the happy ending is coming along? BAM! Throw a few bullets in, and mind manipulation. Although, without all the drama, the book just wouldn't be the same...
I absolutely adored the two characters, Zed and Sky - these two are the embodiment of young love, the modern day Romeo and Juliet - well, minus all the death, and add in a clairvoyant family or two...
Zed was the typical bad boy character, which didn't much appeal to me - sorry to say, but the Reformed Rake plot soon gets a bit tiresome. But his protective streak towards Sky was touching, and you couldn't help but admire him for it. And, let's be honest - his giant (and hilarious) family definitely added to the book's charm. Sky was a character who grabbed my attention. Though starting off as the meek and vulnerable Brit, she soon comes into her own, and we see her courage grow by the mile. Also, as a fellow British teen, I was fighting her corner, and really wanted to see her blossom.
So: The plot? Excellent. The characters? Even better. The style of writing? Impeccable. It's safe to say that this book is faultless. My one query? Joss Stirling, if you're reading this (and I dearly hope you are), is it possible for you to write a book on each of the Benedict Brothers? Now that would be a series I would love to read...
What I've learnt is this. Yes, yes, it's terrible to choose a book because the cover is pretty, but for Finding Sky, I'd like to make an exception. If I wasn't so attracted by plants and leaves, I would never have had the opportunity to read this wonderful book. So many thanks to the illustrator. Oh, and to Joss Stirling for, well, writing the book. I recommend this for all - by which I mean for those who love a good romance.