Book Review – ‘Evan Elemental’ by Crystal Groszek ~ 5 Stars!
I won an ebook of Evan Elemental in a giveaway and as it was a new book and hadn’t had any reviews I went into reading it completely blind. It’s very hard to explain how I felt when I read this book as I felt so many conflicting emotions at once, and the fact that at some points in the novel I really didn’t like the main character because I expected so much more of her, really made it clear to me how invested I was in the story. Overall the only word I can think to describe this book is ‘WOW!’
Brilliant job Crystal Groszek.
The story drew me in right from the word go as we see that Evan loses her parents in a car crash and is then told that she must live with her Grandmother. The prose which talked of Evan’s everyday life after the crash, walking from one activity to another in a zombified state really pulled at my heart. The author made no attempts to make Evan instantly likeable instead focusing on the numb grief which is all that Evan can feel. It was such a refreshing change from seeing characters walking around with a brave smile on their face and refusing to cry. As a teenager, Evan should cry and accept that not everything will be fine, and I really embraced her character for doing that.
This book might not be appropriate for some readers as it depicts drug use among teens which I was a bit wary about when I first read these chapters. I couldn’t really understand why Evan was smoking weed when I would have thought she’d want to make her parents proud of her, but then I have never lost a parent so I can’t say I’d never act this way in that situation. It was a strange story for me to read, as I think it is a realistic depiction of teenagers actions today, whether drug taking is as an experiment, part of a rebellion, or just to distract from emotional pain.
Another reason I liked this book was that I really didn’t like the main male character. This might sound ridiculous, but whenever I read a young adult/new adult book, I always seem to fall in love with the male boyfriend. This was a refreshing change as I really had a bad feeling about Lex. I didn’t like his attitude, possessiveness, jealousy and the way he continually lied to Evan. I really loved Anders, a young man who Evan had a friendship with when they were much younger, but who Evan doesn’t remember. I really connected with his character and can’t wait for the next book in the series so that I can see if their relationship develops romantically as I hope it does. This book gave little focus to their relationship, only throwing in little hints, which I hope I correctly guessed mean we shall see more of Anders and Evan in the next book. I’d also like to see Evan start to realise that Lex isn’t actually the best thing since sliced bread, and I’d like for her to understand that she shouldn’t accept the dominating way he treats her. Maybe it was just me that felt so unsure of Lex, but it didn’t at all detract from how much I loved the story as, if anything, it had me even more excited about how their story will progress.
This was a wonderful, thought-provoking read, and I loved the fantasy element to it which makes the mystery of the story even more exciting. However, do beware as there is an evil cliffhanger at the end.
5 stars and a definite recommended read.