Connected: by Kat Stiles
Release Date: 06/03/15
Wild Child Publishing
High school is hard enough, Em knows. Her freshman year introduced her to all the cliques, annoying teachers, and tough homework assignments. But discovering you have super powers and not knowing how to control them is a whole new level of complicated.
Thankfully, Em isn't alone. Her best friend Roz starts having unusual dreams that come true, and Tommy, Em's secret crush, can hear the softest whispers in class.
A romance blossoms with Tommy. But just as things are looking up, people start dropping like flies. A telepathic serial killer is on the loose and only Em and her friends have a hope of stopping him.
Or do they? If they don't figure out the killer's identity soon, one of them could be next.
Three teens, left to their own devices when two things occur that could easily shatter their world. First, they discover that they have other-worldly powers, which would have been enough to change everything on its own. But then they are met with the reality that there is someone out there with less than desirable intentions, and the object of those intentions could very well become one of them if they aren’t careful. Connected explores the ties between friends, lovers, senses and danger within its plot which is the highlight of the work.
Em has always felt that she was different. Compared to her best friend Roz, she feels downright unappealing. Couple that with the fact that she is bullied day in and day out at school she doesn’t really have any reason not to believe these thoughts about herself. When things begin to change however, and it becomes more apparent just how different she really is, Em suddenly is able to find where she belongs. With this distinct brand of originality and power brought on by her new abilities, Em is able to find the confidence that she always deserved. It doesn’t hurt that the heart throb that is Tommy in into her. As the plot progresses and we discover that these three characters, Em, Roz, and Tommy all have abilities, it is heartening to see that they do not have to brave this new world alone. However, chaos ensues when we discover that there is a killer on the loose, and that he is coming for them.
Connected is a cute, light story written by Kat Stiles that I think young teens will enjoy. The vocabulary and writing style is very geared toward the pre-teen early teenager crowd. I am not sure whether this was done on purpose or if it was just how the story unfolded for Stiles, but either way this is how I would market the book in order to land in the right audience. I am an avid reader of YA, however I normally enjoy the YA variety that can translate over into adult themes as well. This is not a book that I could relate to much, as Connected seemed to connect more with a specific time period in one’s life as opposed to an ideal that everyone could relate to. As I read it, I felt that I was too old to really appreciate it, and I found that unfortunate. I think books should be able to transcend age and speak to everyone. However, I do have younger siblings in my life, and I would be very interested to hear their take on the book. This is something that I think my pre-teen sister would enjoy, so if you are looking for a good, clean tween read, I think that this would be a great pick. The characters are well thought out and the story is very cute and captivating.
Overall, I would give Connected 3 out of 5 stars. I think that had the book been stated as more of a tween novel, I would have known more of what to expect. The vocabulary was not thought provoking nor was I really enthralled by any one aspect of the book. I will however be passing along this book to my sister, as I believe that she would really enjoy it. I am interested to see what she has to think and I would be interested in writing a separate review in her words pending her completion of the book. I received this book in exchange for an honest review.
Kat Stiles is a super hero geek at heart. She grew up watching Spiderman, X-men and Superfriends cartoons, and she loved the idea of having super powers. The superhero movies that came out delighted her; even the bad ones were still so much fun. And she remembers wishing the series, “Heroes” would go on forever. With Connected, she tried to keep the abilities as organic as possible – something just a little beyond what a normal human can do. She’s met some pretty incredible people in her life, and her experiences greatly influenced the writing of Connected.