This week, I had the pleasure of reading Empath, by Becca J. Campbell as part of a book club's program. You can read my review in context, here on goodreads, or below.
Fresh and new, a great spin on the supernatural!
Jade is a young woman with a "flaw," she's an empath. She's lived a very sheltered life, home schooling, controlled interactions, the lot of it. But, as a grown adult, she's ready to head out into the real world and learn to interact with those around her, flaw be damned. She struggles at first and her character development, while very linear, is enjoyable to read. She doesn't encounter many emotional hurdles as she grows, but the physical ones are there to stand in her way. She meets Logan, a quiet professor at her college, who captures her attention with his silent personality and beautiful golden eyes, but when he seems more comfortable with remaining friends, she meets Cam who, without knowing it, helps her to learn to control her flaw.
While the character arcs are straight forward and easily comprehensible, the quirky personalities that the author brings to life will have you laughing and crying and rooting for each of them in turn. The characters were interesting, but Jade, the main focus, was the most lack-luster of them all. Not, that she as a character wasn't interesting, the scenes with her and Logan were the most well executed, but because of her empathy she tended to feel amorphous and spineless, always taking on the traits of the other characters in the scene. This isn't a problem in itself, and I can see how in the beginning of the story it's a fantastic plot device, but as the story progressed, I found myself wanting more Jade and less mush.
This is a very character focus read, very little details are given to the setting or even character clothing, so having a good imagination and the author's help with captivating characters made it easy for me to stay immersed, though I can see how that might annoy other readers.