The Rising by Ryan Troske
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
In The Rising, Ethan’s life is pretty normal until an accident one night nearly kills him – but also gives him incredible powers. With his powers taking over his life and putting everyone in danger, he fears he needs help controlling them, but where would that help come from? It ends up coming from an unlikely source, who pulls him into a world of supernaturals that he never knew existed.
It’s an exciting first part of the series that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
I loved the voice of the book (save for the very beginning, which initially broke the wall between narrator and audience in a way that I just didn’t think was engaging enough, and the voice seemed older, not really belonging to a 16-year-old, until about halfway through, though that may be because he announced that he was 16).
The romance aspect was sweet, and Ethan was kind of adorably oblivious to the trail of broken hearts he seemed to leave behind. I’ll be interested to see how the author develops that further throughout the series.
The supernatural powers are awesome! It was interesting, though that Ethan seemed to be the only one that ever struggled with control (likely because of the chunk of metal still stuck in his brain from the accident).
My biggest complaints were that the action scenes were hard to follow with all the names (each time we meet a group of people, there’s about 6-12 of them, all named and unique, and thereafter they’re only referred to by name. We go through about 3 groups of names, so you can imagine trying to figure out who is who and which side everyone is on.).
My other problem with the story was Donovan’s role. I’m pretty sure I know how he fits into the story, but why the adults in the situation wouldn’t explain his relation (refusing to use it to manipulate or warn) seemed like an oversight. I understand why the author would want to drag out that mystery, but it didn’t really make sense for the story, in my opinion.
Only other complaint is that the cover, while cool, does little to draw me into the story, which is unfortunate, because the story is awesome. I’d love to see something that focused more on the main characters and their powers than one that depicted a scene (no matter how dramatic).
I think young adult readers who enjoy fantasy, light sci-fi, and superhero tales will enjoy The Rising. The “emergence of a superhero” theme reminds me of another book I read, Beginnings: Family Heritage Volume 1 by Andrew M. Ferrell, which is another great plot (read my review here).
**This book is clean, from what I recall – little to no swearing, and innocent romantic interactions.