Monday, January 30, 2012

REVIEW! Vala: Agendas by JF Jenkins

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Vala: Agendas by J.F. Jenkins
Published: October 17, 2011
Publisher: Astraea Press
Pages: 241
Received: as part of blog tour via Bewitching Book Tours
Cheyenne Loveless was just a boring sixteen-year-old girl. Then Denver Collins bit her and everything changed. Her plants start talking to her, she finds out she’s a Nymph, and a witch and the angel of death show up at her doorstep to take her away to the prestigious Vala School and Seminary. Oh, and she has no choice in the matter.

All she wants to do is blend in and return to being invisible, but the more time that passes, the harder that becomes. Plus she’s a daughter of the Divine, an exclusive secret society which rules the world of myth, and discovers she is a key ingredient to an ancient covenant created before she was born. A covenant that will reshape the order of the world.

Adjusting to a new school is difficult enough, but adding on everyone else’s hidden agendas is the icing on the cake. Cheyenne must learn to see through the lies in order to find her place — and possibly even love — in this new world.
This was an amazingly unique story. I was not really sure what to expect with this novel, but I was pleasantly surprised that it was it's own story and not like anything else I've read of late. 

Cheyenne is a quiet, reserved girl who tends to keep to herself. She has almost no friends and has panic attacks easily. I kinda liked the fact that she was a bit bookish/geeky as if made me related to her more. After a night of fun with a few friends she is attracted to a guy, Denver Collins, who she thinks might kiss her, but in fact actually bites her. That is when her world turns upside down and feels more like a bad dream.

From this point on she finds out her Mom is not really her mother, but a kind of foster mother. She also finds out that she is a Nymph and the daughter of the Divine, she is Persephone's daughter. Strangers, a witch and a Fallen Angel, come to her home to take her to her new school and to eventually meet her real parents. So much happens in a short time for Cheyenne, but she adapts pretty quickly. It's almost like she finally feels like she is a part of something instead of feeling like an outsider. And her panic attacks are almost non-existent and she becomes a stronger person as the story expands.
She meets some amazing new friends - Halyn (her roommate) and Anj and Zes (the twins). She has an instant attraction to the twins, she seemed more interested in Anj at first, but I kept pulling for Zes throughout the story. Little does she know that this Denver Collins guy attends her school and is looking to cause her some trouble.

There are all kinds facets to Cheyenne's story: her attraction to the despicable Denver, her connection and love for Zes, and of course there is Lucien who believes she is bound to end up his possession due to some old tale of the Divine. 

There are so many ways for this story to go and I cannot wait to see what happens in the next installment. I'm pulling for Cheyenne and Zes, but have a feeling Denver and Lucien will try to disrupt their relationship some more. 

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