Melissa's Reviews > Untouched

Untouched by Jus Accardo
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Feb 11, 2012

it was ok
bookshelves: 2012-reads
Read from April 16 to 17, 2012

I found the first book in the Denazen series, Touch, to be an okay book. My main concern with that book was that I had a hard time wrapping my head around Kale as a romantic lead for this story. He was a wonderful character with an interesting history, and I did want to explore more of the difficulties he faced as a result of being locked away in a Denazen facility for almost his entire life. He entered our society without any understanding of the subtleties of language or the conveniences of modern technology in everyday life or how to take time to enjoy life around him. Fascinating. However, I couldn't warm up to him as a romantic male lead because his character seemed too naive to me. Although I know that he is strong and older, for some reason as I read I kept picturing either a young boy or a Forrest Gump type character in my head. I couldn't shake that visualization, and for that reason the romance came across as a bit creepy to me. I know that was not the intention of the author at all, and that has more to do with my experience as a reader than the actual story, but it was what it was, and my enjoyment of the novel suffered for that reason.

Now in Untouched we are reintroduced to Kale and the love of his life, Dez, but whereas in Touch Dez was the first person narrator, Kale is the narrator in this one. Unfortunately that intensifies the problems of the first book for me. Now I was right inside Kale's head with a first person view of his naivety. He is so sweet and pure in so many ways, but he has suffered so much in his young life, so there is an element of danger inside him as well. Actually, I believe that this will be an excellent theme to pursue as the series moves forward. This struggle between the saint who Dez believes Kale to be and the monster that Kale thinks himself to be will be interesting to see as it plays out. I want more of that. In this short novella, however, I got very little insight into that character issue.

In this story Dez and Kale find another Six with an invisibility talent, and they encourage her to come with them to protect herself from the Denazen corp. That makes sense. What didn't make sense to me was why in the middle of this crazy flight away from this dangerous organization Dez decided that it would be a great idea to hang out at an amusement park for the day. I get that it is necessary sometimes to find a time to escape from the harsh realities of the world. But this plan seemed ridiculous, especially when Kale was convinced that they were being watched. I guess the amusement park angle served to further show just how isolated Kale had been as he questions every little bizarre attraction at the place. Things that seem like normal amusement park fare for us seem pointless to Kale. But all of this wasn't very interesting to me as a reader. I'm sure others feel differently about it. It just didn't work for me.

I thought that the villain for this piece, a man who had the ability to control others once they looked him in the eye, was interesting. That is a powerful talent to have, and this man, unfortunately, used it ruthlessly without any hint of conscience. I wish that there was more to the story. I wanted to understand more about his past interaction with Kale and how this experience affected Kale. I wanted there to be more of a discussion about how this ability had become so twisted in this man. It just seemed as if so much time was spent on the setup that the main event was neglected.

I only gave this novella two stars because I only thought it was okay, but I'm not giving up on this series. I see some great potential in this story, and once the story returns to the full novel length I have hope that I will find many of the elements I have found lacking in the first two installments I have read. This hasn't ended up being a favorite book of this genre for me, but others might enjoy the story. I just couldn't get over my inability to recognize Kale as a grown man. If you can do this, there is a chance you will find in these stories books you'll enjoy.
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