Jen 's Reviews > Becoming

Becoming by Raine Thomas
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's review
Feb 06, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: own, reviewed

When it comes to Young Adult Fantasy, it really doesn't get better than Becoming. To say that I was blown away would be an understatement. I wasn't just blown away, I was swept away. I loved everything about Becoming. It was charming, fresh, innovative. World-building at it's finest. Truly, a beautifully crafted story with lovely characters, settings, raw emotion and a powerful message. In this book, love truly does conquer all. And I'm not only talking about romantic love, but love for one's self and for our fellow man. There is an underlying theme in this book that without respect, love and understanding, you really can't go anywhere in life. And I really loved it!

The romance in this story was incredibly refreshing. There are no love triangles. No instantaneous love. The love shared between the main characters, Amber and Gabriel, is a love that is nurtured overtime, grown out of mutual respect and admiration. They are friends first and fall in love later. The only hurdles in this love story are the personal insecurities and doubts of each character rooted in their complex backgrounds. The love in this story felt very real and it was very sweet. Amber -who is the female lead in this book- is a very strong young woman, who is unassuming and very funny. Her main struggle being her general distrust of others due to not having a stable home for most of her childhood and being moved across several foster care homes for most of her life. Gabriel, the male lead in this book, is more of a gentle spirit, strong but more comfortable around others. He is a true gentleman and really is the perfect balance to Amber's more distant nature. I loved that Amber and Gabriel felt very real, the dialogue for both of these characters was incredibly believable and truly authentic to how people sound like in their late teens.

When it comes to world-building, I thought that Becoming shined. Why? because it was really creative, intelligent, and complex. In Becoming instead of having angels, fairies, vampires, or wolves, we have a new type of being introduced to us. They are called The Estilorians. In this book, the humans are not aware of their existence; even though at some point in time, humans and Estilorians shared the world. The difference between the two being that Estilorians have a slight different appearance, special powers and react different to emotion while humans don't have any special powers and are more emotional beings. Eventually, The Estilorians have to separate themselves from the humans and become the stuff of what human myth and legend is based upon. And from here on, the book delves and centers itself around the myth about the daughters of Saraqael, an Estilorian and we soon discover new truths about our main characters, the Estilorian world and people, and their battles.

But above all, my favorite part of Becoming is it's study on emotion. Each character in the book has a very particular personality and struggle. Whether it is being too distrusting, too logical or too fearful and when you add the lack of emotion that characterize the Estilorians you have yourself a quite fascinating read on how the lack or excess of emotion can affect any culture (human or not). Also, I felt like this book centers around how dangerous the fear of the unknown can get. How it can devolve into cruelty, coldness and jealousy even. And considering how fleshed out each character in this book is, both primary and secondary characters, the reader soon finds themselves absolutely captivated and invested in each characters emotional struggle and journey to overcome what main issue plagues them.

I definitely can't wait to read about Olivia and Skye's journey in book two and three, in the Daughters of Saraqael series. Because like Amber and Gabriel, they were also quite interesting and lovely characters to read about it.

My advice: Read this book. It has everything you want in a Young Adult fantasy/romance novel. It is packed with adventure, love, creativity, insight, and humour. Becoming is truly captivating from start to finish.

My Rating: 5/5
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message 1: by Desiree (new) - added it

Desiree I just got this one and you made me really excited to read it!

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