29 August 2014

Tour Stop (Review): Gypsy - Trisha Leigh

Gypsy by Trisha Leigh 
(The Cavy Files #1)
Publication date: May 13th 2014
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult


For Gypsy and the other Cavies, Darley Hall has been home for the majority of their lives. Sure, there are the experiments, but they have people who look after them and friends they can count on. That is, until it gets raided by the police and the Cavies find themselves exposed to the world outside Darley. From then on ,they have to conceal their powers for fear of being discovered.

Gypsy was considered inconsequential at Darley Hall compared to the other Cavies. The power to know what age someone will be when they die simply by touching them is not considered very useful when others have the power to disappear, to explode things and to move at the speed of light. However, when she is in the world outside she can flourish. Her power is easily concealed and so she can fit in more easily than the rest of them. Just as she starts to relax Gypsy and the other cavies are injected with an unknown substance that begins affecting their powers. 

When I heard of this book, the first thing that it reminded me of was not X-Men, as it's chalked up to be, but Numbers by Rachel Ward. In both stories, the heroine also knows when people are going to die through a special power. The difference is that Numbers predicts the date of death, whereas Gypsy predicts the age at the time of death. If anything, Gypsy's power seems more useless and more psychologically damaging, as there is no way she could stop it if she doesn't know the date. This can have a huge effect on her relationships and as a result she tries not to touch people. The book is a little bit like X-Men, as there are awesome powers, superhero names (that I shall talk about soon) and a school for mutants where they develop and hone their powers (OK, so Darley isn't really a school for mutants, but just work with me here).

As well as feeling a bit comic-book sci-fi, there's also tons of Government intrigue, part Scooby Doo detective story and a YA element in terms of relationships and teen issues. Trisha Leigh combines lots of different ideas here but still manages to make you remember that these are still teenagers going through the usual life problems, only with more at stake.

As I was saying earlier the super-heroesque names are particularly clever. I'll give some examples. Gypsy, first of all is named so because of her power to basically see into the future. Haint, which is a kind of ghost, can dissappear at will.These are the names that Darley Hall gave them, and they all make a cool, sometimes cruel, sense.

Gypsy herself is a likeable heroine, she's clever and interesting and her emotional journey through the novel kept my attention. It was clear how much she cared for the other Cavies, and how difficult it was for all of them to fit in with society. As it's written in first person it's easy to see where her loyalties lie.

There are many themes running through this novel. The main ones being family and friendship, fitting in with society, embracing your differences, trust and betrayal, feeling insecure and some romance ( though i found that there was just the right amount of it. It didn't detract from the story but emphasised how awful her power could be).

Without giving too much away, Gypsy ended well, albeit on a bit of a cliffhanger, but don't let that put you off. The storyline issues were resolved but there are still so many things I need to know the answers to.

I loved the idea and execution of this book, and I cant wait to see what happens to the Cavies next! I would recommend to people who love sci-fi, mystery, YA or super heroes.

Gypsy on Goodreads

Author Bio:
Trisha Leigh is a product of the Midwest, which means it’s pop, not soda, garage sales, not tag sales, and you guys as opposed to y’all. Most of the time. She’s been writing seriously for five years now, and has published 4 young adult novels and 4 new adult novels (under her pen name Lyla Payne). Her favorite things, in no particular order, include: reading, Game of Thrones, Hershey’s kisses, reading, her dogs (Yoda and Jilly), summer, movies,  reading, Jude Law, coffee, and rewatching WB series from the 90’s-00’s.
Her family is made up of farmers and/or almost rock stars from Iowa, people who numerous, loud, full of love, and the kind of people that make the world better. Trisha tries her best to honor them, and the lessons they’ve taught, through characters and stories - made up, of course, but true enough in their way.
Trisha is the author of The Last Year series and the Whitman University books. She’s represented by Kathleen Rushall at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

Kyra and Staceyx

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