I never really heard the word "childe" bandied about until C.A. Kunz's debut novel, THE CHILDE, came out. I didn't realize it was a word outside of this novel until a fellow book blogger (I forget who you are now, I'm sorry!!) mentioned that the term had been used before. This just intrigued me all the more. What, exactly, IS a childe? That's the question on every reader's lips throughout this novel, but answers won't be uncovered until the main character, Cat, begins realizing her own destiny. The term is described toward the end of the book, creating a build-up of suspense, so I can't just reveal the definition here in a review. You will discover this when Cat does, and for now, that has to be good enough. ^.~
Mother/Son team Carol and Adam Kunz (C.A. Kunz, get it?) have co-authored a debut novel filled with an unusual paranormal story. Some elements are ones readers familiar with the genre may have seen before, while other concepts are brand-new and told in new ways. THE CHILDE is the first in a five-book series which has already been making its way through the Indie awards. The story follows a teenager named Cat Colvin on a journey to becoming a Childe. She has no clue that she has an unusual destiny and has been protected by the people around her since birth. Things are coming to a head in the town of Astoria as she approaches her birthday, becoming more dangerous each day. Cat begins having nightmares and developing strange tendencies such as hearing people's thoughts when she never has before. She's even developing heterochromia, her one eye now amber and no longer the blue it's been her entire life. Things are growing stranger all the time, and the first novel leaves off in a place where Cat has begun to realize life has more in store for her. The second book promises to be full of more answers as Cat learns the truth about what it means to be a Childe.
THE CHILDE is third person omniscient, and while focused primarily on Cat, there are times when the reader can peek in on the thoughts of the people around her. This is a bonus in building suspense, since Cat spends much of the novel oblivious to the fact that she's unique. It also gives readers answers and provides clues, creating a new puzzle to piece together that would be impossible if told singularly from Cat's point of view. At the same time, there were one or two POVs unnecessary for propelling the story along, such as that of resident popular girl Kirsten Fuller. I read an early version of this novel, which has since been with an editor and is about to be re-issued, complete with an award seal on the cover. The version I read did have several editing/grammatical issues that have since been fixed, and it was hard to discern when some scenes ended and other began. More scene breaks have been added to account for jumps in time, so newer versions of this book or e-book will provide a cleaner read. If reading the original version, as I did, if you can overlook these inconsistencies and focus on the story as a whole, you will be presented with an intriguing new idea about to be expanded upon in book two.
Check back soon for an upcoming feature with the authors as well as a fun giveaway! (I was going to post the giveaway tonight, but I don't have time!!)