Friday, February 21, 2014

The Conceling

Title: The Conceling
Author: D.E.L. Conner
Series: Spirit Warriors, Book 1
Number of Pages: 191
Date Read: 2/21/14
Genre: Mythology, Fantasy, Magic, Supernatural

Synopsis (Found on

Sixteen-year-old Emme Belrose has it all: four best friends, a horse of her own, a hidden tepee hangout, and a blossoming romance with tall and handsome Charlie. These friends also have a secret. They can move their spirits into animal bodies: an osprey, a mustang, a grizzly, a mountain lion and a coyote. But when Charlie, who has a gift for seeing the future, has a vision of Emme drowning in the icy Yellowstone River, the Spirit Warriors must train their animal bodies to kill an enemy they know is coming but know nothing about. Suspenseful, romantic, and awash in Native American magic, Spirit Warriors captures the tragic enchantment of the American Westand confirms the power of friendship.

My Review:

This book was ok for me. I liked the second half of the book the best. 

The book is about 5 best friends who are told that they will need to battle an evil spirit. The friends must learn how to move their spirits into their host animal and how to fight when they are with their animal in order to defeat the spirit. 

I am not sure how I felt about the beginning of the book. For me, I wasn't really into the writing. At times I felt like things came out of left field and that there was no real reason for them to be put into the book (Bird sex?). I also felt like the teens acted way younger than they actually were. They were supposed to be 16-17 but they still used words like "play together" and they always wrestled, chased and tickled each other. I would never do that with my friends at that age but I guess everyone is different? That just didn't hold true with me. I just cant see teens that age touching each other like young kids do. Also I wasn't into how the teens talked. One minute they spoke in slang with swear words and they next they spoke in proper English. The proper English made the conversations feel awkward. I also felt like the teens accepted that they would have to be spirit warriors wayyy to easily. I mean Charlie just told them they would have to do something supernatural and they all just said OK. Not realistic for me.

What I did like about the book was the friendship between the 5/6 teens (Emme, Charlie, Bests, Lilly, Ollie and later on Jack) I liked how much they loved and trusted each other. They had good times together and were supportive of each other in everything they did. I also liked how close their families (except for Lilly's) were to each other. The adults trusted each other with their children and they protected all of the kids like they were their own. I especially love how the adults and the teens treated and cared for Lilly, whose father was a class A jacka** abuser. The parents took Lilly in, fed her, clothed her and provided for her. The teens loved Lilly and Emme and Lilly were especially close. I loved how the 5 teens accepted Jack when he arrived and included him into their group to the point where it was as if he had grown up with them. At times I thought the love between the teens was preachy but overall I loved their relationships with each other. 

I also liked the supernatural aspect of the book. I find it interesting that they book was about spirits moving into the animals' body and the human spirit and animals spirit co-existed together for the short while they were joined. At first I had thought the kids shapeshifted but its so much more than that. Each teen bonded with their animal, learned their animals movements and behaviors and made loving friendships with their animal. When not inhibiting their animal's bodies the teens would play with their animal and visit their homes. And these are not pet animals, they are wild dangerous animals (horse, bear, mountain lion, osprey and coyote). The relationship between the host animal and their teen was another great aspect to the book. 

I'm not sure how I feel about Emme, the main character. She, like all the rest of the teens, is caring, loving, loyal, giving, and appreciative of everything around her which I really liked. It was great for the author to take the time to allow Emme to appreciate nature, her friends and the adults in her life WITHOUT something bad happening to her; its just her nature. I don't see that much in books. At times I felt like Emme was very childish and I kept forgetting that she was in her later teen years. At times I liked her and other times she annoyed me. I feel the same about Charlie. He is native american and believes in his cultures religion, prophecy and spirits. Charlie is a "seer" and gets visions of the future. He talks like he is 40 years old and he has a lot more wisdom than a teen his age should have. He is very concerned with protecting Emme that I feel like he doesn't allow himself any fun or won;t be able to do the things he wants in life because he feels his first priority is Emme. There is a romance between these two and I guess they are a couple. I felt like the romance was forced. They went into it saying I love you right off the bat. Charlie asks Emme to marry him when the time comes. Its like jeez they're only 16, slow down dude. For me the romance was more show/tell than feel. I just didn't feel it like I do in other novels. It felt like it was there because having a romance is a trend in books. 

The rest of the characters I can definitely say I liked. Lilly was sweet. She had a hard life but she stayed sweet, loving and caring. I felt like she was the one that the whole group took care of even if they didn't realize they were doing it. I felt that while Lilly was the oldest in the group, she was the most fragile and naive. Bets was the brainiac of the group who always asks questions and believes everything can be solved with science and logic. She can be very blunt and mean with what she says. She has a good heart though and is just as loving as the rest of the teens. Ollie is the funny one, who constantly farts (which is kinda gross) and lightens up the moods. Jack is the newcomer that the teens welcome into the fold. He is Australian and is funny with some of the things he says. I get the feeling that he likes Emme also but Emme's heart is with Charlie. 

The second part of the book has much more action and suspense in it. I felt that things were dragging a bit until that part. Most of the book was about the kid's life during school and the summer. The spirit warriors and going into the animals bodies happened in one chapter and then didn't happen for a long time. The time past very quickly with one chapter being summer, then one being winter then the next one being summer again. I think at least a year passed in the book, maybe 2. The ending picked up and was great. There were surprised that I totally didn't see coming. I felt angry, sad and murderous during parts of the book. There was one character that I felt like I could really kill if they were real. I like when books give me emotions that I feel strongly. I have to say the ending was the best part. While it seems like the book is over, the author gives a bit of info that shows there will be a next book. 

Will I read the next book? You bet!


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