Hidden by Marianne Curley

April 11, 2013 Reviews 0 ★★★★½

Hidden by Marianne CurleyHidden (Avena #1) by Marianne Curley
Published: 11th January 2013 by Bloomsbury Sydney
Format: Paperback, 325 pages
Genres: Fantasy, Paranormal
Source: Publisher
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4.5 Stars

When he took Ebony from me, I knew I would spend my life searching for her. Now I have found her, he will do everything in his power to keep us apart.

Ebony has led a very sheltered life. She isn't ready for the disturbing things which start happening to her. But these events are just part of a discovery that will rock her whole world.

Ebony's life wasn't 'sheltered' - she was hidden away. Now her location is no longer secret, but who will find her first?

I think the blurb of this book really doesn’t sell it – I put off reading it until I read Mandee’s review, and when I found out she enjoyed it, I decided to give it a chance. I’m so glad I did, and also sad that I left it so long, because Hidden is a wonderful book that most readers will enjoy.

Hidden refuses to follow the usual formulaic outline of a paranormal romance – the protagonists are strong and rather more mature than the average YA characters, the plot is amazingly paced, and the concept is cool and exciting. I think the book has a lot to offer. My favourite aspect of the book is that it’s told in dual point-of-view. I think this story hinges on the reader being privy to what Jordan is experiencing, and I love it when I get to see both sides of the story.

Ebony is refreshingly intelligent and independent – she thinks her decisions through, is careful and never idiotically blunders her way into dangerous situations, and always has the welfare of those around her foremost in her mind. She is careful and initially distrusting of the strangers that claim they can help her, which I found  more realistic than the blind faith some other YA heroines have. I think her sheltered lifestyle contributed to this, in part, and I really like this smart, conscientious girl.

I was fully expecting Ebony and Jordan, as the narrating protagonists, to randomly fall in love, as is the way of many YA novels and was pleasantly surprised at the romance in the book. I subsequently had my heart broken, and am still reeling from it all, but I love the clever way the author has handled the predictability of romance in YA, and I’m looking forward to seeing how everything falls out in future books.

I love the plot of the book, it seems well researched and is vividly painted. The fictional Australian setting is great, and I enjoy the idea that a little valley Australia can hide an angel so well! I did initially think that the book is too heavily foreshadowed, because I guessed so many things before they happened, but now that I have finished Hidden, I feel it was intentional on the author’s part. Readers almost always know what is going to happen before the protagonists and it added a sense of desperation because I wanted the characters to figure everything out before time ran out.

I can’t really praise Hidden any more – you’ll have to grab a copy and experience the awesome for yourself! I’m really looking forward to the follow-up books and following Ebony’s journey to find herself.

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