If you like myths and legends or magic and supernatural, this book is for you. While the author has written it for high school and college age readers, this is a good light novel for adults. The plot is filled with myths or legends from New Zealand.
We meet our heroine Ellie Spencer in a New Zealand boarding school, while her parents are traveling around the world. This is a new school and she meets several interesting students. One fellow student is Kevin and becomes her best friend. Mark is another student that leaves her confused every time she is near him. Mark while looking and acting human is part Patupaiarehe. This is a supernatural species that predates humans in New Zealand, including the Maori who are similar to our Native Americans in the United States. All Ellie knows is that Mark leaves her confused and her memory is fuzzy. She is also noticing strange things occurring.
Mark has awakened her natural magical ability and then in order to protect her, he has cast a spell that does not allow her to remember certain details. In the book we also meet Mark’s mom, dad and
grandfather. Mark’s mom is a Patupaiarehe, his father is human and his grandfather is a Taniwha (water guardian monster). Mark has basically given up his Patupaiarehe magic but there are others of this nature that are looking for him in order to get rid of him. His mother, Reka is afraid for him and when she finds out that Ellie is aware of the strange things occurring; Reka tries to take Kevin in order to have children because he also has magical ability. Ellie and Mark stop Reka because Ellie has figured out what Reka is and Mark can tell her about himself.
After saving Kevin, Mark and Ellie have another job to do. While all of this was occurring, there was a
serial killer on the island taking people’s eyes after killing them. Mark gives Ellie more history and she finds out that the serial killer is actually patupaiarehes killing people with magical ability. At one time they were immortal. There are many myths or legends about how mankind was made and death came about. Mark told Ellie the Maori origin story.
The other patupaiarehe want to become immortal again. Now Mark and Ellie have to save New Zealand. Mark has a network of people with magic and begins to gather them together. They go to the North Island in order to fight. It comes down to Ellie completing the task the patupaiarehe was trying to complete to become immortal again. When Ellie completes the task, she saves New Zealand and Mark.
The story is detailed but well written. The author has spent considerable time in detailing some of the stories of New Zealand and wove them very well into her plot line. Again if you like magic, supernatural, myths and legends, you will like this book as a light read.
Reviewed by Antya Lentes