Monday 15 November 2010

Review: Dark Visions - L.J. Smith

Gifted and cursed

Kaitlyn Fairchild has always felt like an outsider.  Her haunting eyes and prophetic drawings have earned a reputation as a witch.  But Kait's not a witch: she's psychic.  Tired of being shunned, Kait accepts an invitation to attend the Zetes Institute, where she can study with other psychic teens and have a fresh start.

As Kaitlyn learns to hone her abilities with four other gifted students, she starts to discover the intensity of her power - and the joy of having true friends.  But those friendships quickly become complicated when Kait finds herself torn between two irresistible guys.  Rob is a healer - kind and gentle, he's surrounded by good energy, while Gabriel is aggressive and mysterious - a telepath concealing his true nature.

Together, Rob and Gabriel's opposing forces start to threaten the group's stability, and when an experiment traps the five teens in a psychic link - a link that threatens their sanity and their lives - Kaitlyn mist decide who to trust and who to love...

Dark Visions Trilogy: (this book includes all 3 stories in the Dark Visions series, they have also been published as separate books)
The Strange Power
The Possessed
The Passion

Visit L.J. Smith's website for more information

Kaitlyn has always been considered an outsider at her school and is known as a witch because of her strange drawings.  When she gets the urge to draw she never knows what she will produce but her pictures always give a warning about something that will happen in the future.  When she is offered a place at an institute for gifted psychics she jumps at the chance to go to California and hopes to find out more about her gifts.  Life at the institute isn't what she was expecting though.  She makes 4 new friends who all have different psychic abilities but all is not what it seems and someone at the institute seems to want to use the students for their own agenda.  When the group accidentally get locked together in a telepathic link they are desperate to find a way to break the connection between them.  But as time goes on they realise that the link between them may be the only way they will survive long enough to figure out what is really going on at the institute.

I really enjoyed L.J. Smith's Night World series so was looking forward to trying her Dark Visions trilogy.  I love the fact that all 3 stories have been incorporated into 1 volume so there is no having to wait between installments.  Dark Visions was a great read and I would definitely recommend the series to fans of young adult urban fantasy.

Each of the students that have been hand picked to attend the institute have different psychic abilities.  I'm not going to tell you what they are - you'll have to read the book if you want to find out - but I found it interesting to see how their abilities worked and the impact that had on them as individuals and as a group.  Kaitlyn had always felt different from her peers so meeting others with similar abilities means she finally has people she can relate to.  She quickly forms friendships with Anna, Lewis and Rob but Gabriel holds himself apart from the group and is harder to get to know.  I liked all of the characters but I'd have to say Gabriel was my favorite, it takes time to get to know him but he will steal your heart as you do.

The psychic bond that formed between them allowed them to read each others thoughts and made life very difficult as everyone could hear what the others were thinking, I don't think I'd like to be stuck in a bond like that even with my closest friends.  The only one who could keep his thoughts to himself was Gabriel who has a very strong telepathic ability and is the one who caused the bond to form in the first place. 

I really enjoyed the romance in the story, Kaitlyn is attracted to both Rob and Gabriel.  They are practically complete opposites but you can see what it is about each of them that draws her to them.  Rob is kind and caring while Gabriel is the secretive bad boy that leaves you wanting to know more.  I thought the romance between them developed well and I'll just say that I was happy with the ending.

As much as I love having so many stories about vampires and other supernatural characters available Dark Visions was a refreshing change and I'm looking forward to reading more by L.J. Smith.  I'd definitely recommend giving this book a try.

Source: Received from Simon & Schuster UK in exchange for an honest review

Other reviews of this book:
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  1. I started reading this one and then stopped I think I really need to try and read this again. I love L. J. Smith. The Night world series was one of my favorites glad to see you enjoyed it.

  2. @ Jessilyn - I enjoyed this one & really like her Night World series, I really want to re-read that series at some point. I hope you like this one if you give it another try :o)



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