Title: Chasing Power
Author: Sarah Beth Durst
Publication Date: October 14, 2014
Summary: Sixteen-year-old Kayla was born with the ability to move things with her mind-things like credit cards and buttons on cash registers-and she has become a master shoplifter. She steals to build up enough money for her and her mom to be able to flee if her dad finds them again . . . which would mean grave danger for them both.
When she’s caught stealing by a boy named Daniel-a boy with the ability to teleport-he needs her help and is willing to blackmail her to get it. Together, they embark on a quest to find and steal an ancient incantation, written on three indestructible stones and hidden millennia ago, all to rescue Daniel’s kidnapped mother. But Kayla has no idea that this rescue mission will lead back to her own family-and to betrayals that she may not be able to forgive . . . or survive.
This book had a few things with really cool potential, but ultimately fell flat. We have a girl who can move things with her mind and a boy who can teleport anywhere as long as he has seen it in a picture; how could that possibly be boring? Well, let me tell you.
To start off with, Kayla was one of the the most uninteresting heroines of all time. She just didn’t really have anything about her that made her stand out and her personality was flat at best. She jumped between being very calm and collected, to being dramatic and kind of stupid. The thing I really did like though was that her powers were very interesting. She can move things with her mind, but only small things, so it requires her to get creative sometimes and I really liked that. For example, at one point, someone is underwater so she sends bubbles of air down so they can breathe. Or she changes the course of bullets instead of ripping the gun out of someones hands. Because she had to be creative, it made it much more interesting when she had to use her powers to steal things or help in fights.
As for the love interest Daniel, he just made me really mad. I’m getting really frustrated with every boy in YA books being so ridiculously attractive, then having it brought up like every ten pages. It makes me angry that apparently for a boy to be brave or snarky or have superpowers, he’s also required to look like a super model. Or maybe there are so many hot guys in YA books so all the girls reading drown in jealousy because obviously the heroine must be so much prettier and cooler than us to score such a hottie. In which case, I’m even angrier.
Ranting aside, Daniel seemed like an interesting character and his power is awesome, but we never really get any depth. Mostly Kayla just jumps between hating him, admiring how hot he is, then hating him so more. He was kind of annoying at first because he was impulsive and idiotic and didn’t listen to anyone, but it was also kind of sweet to see how determined he was. Unfortunately, just like Kayla though, he suffered from having little to no personality.
Their relationship isn’t even really worth talking about but I’m going to waste my time explaining why it was awful anyways. This whole book is so fast paced and all over the place that I’m not positive, but I’m pretty sure the whole thing happened in just a few days. So if Kayla and Daniel are literally confessing their undying love to each other within this period of time, I’m going to have a little problem. Not to mention that through the whole book, Kayla is hating him and thinking about what an idiot he is. Then they are randomly kissing a bunch and in love? Are you kidding me?
As far as the plot goes, this should have been a really interesting book. Kayla and Daniel travel around to try and find some ancient stones, jumping from place to place, racing against bad guys and whatnot. But basically, they did nothing to work together, constantly got screwed over, and mostly bored me to death.The story behind the stones was kind of interesting, but that was only briefly touched upon. Then the clues they were left to hunting down the stones were solved in like five seconds, so there wasn’t even much of a mystery, it was more like just waiting for them to actually get to the place.
And oh my god you guys, the best part of this whole book was how much of it that Daniel spent unconscious. Being able to teleport is kind of an unfair ability in a fight and if Kayla and Daniel could just jump away every time the bad guys showed up, how would the bad guys ever be able to say some cryptic stuff and try to steal the stones? So the author’s solution? Knock Daniel out every five seconds. Seriously. He either teleports too much, overexerting himself and falling unconscious like an idiot so they are stranded in some dangerous place, or the bad guys knock him out in some way. It would have almost been funny if it wasn’t so annoying.
All of the secondary characters were just as boring as Kayla and Daniel and you don’t end up caring about any of them. Kayla’s best friend, her mother, who she calls Moonbeam (yeah, I have no idea), Daniel’s mother, they were all just one dimensional. They all felt awkward and fake, and anything “interesting” about them felt so forced. Even the villains were predictable and their reasons behind being evil weren’t interesting at all.
Ultimately, with the combination of an uninteresting cast of characters and a plot that almost had me snoring, I was amazed that I made it to the end. A few of the concepts were intriguing and the author had a unique take on Kayla’s telekinesis powers, but even that wasn’t enough to keep me focused.