July 6, 2013

RELEASE DAY REVIEW: The Year of the Great Seventh (Tropic of Cancer #1)

The Year of the Great Seventh (Tropic of Cancer #1), by Teresa Orts
Published July 6, 2013
Publisher:  Drayton Press
Format: paperback - obtained from the author in exchange for an honest review
Genre:  young adult paranormal romance, mythology
To Buy:  Amazon

Rating:  3.5 STARS

(From Goodreads) Sophie has always felt out of step — an outsider, even amongst friends in her high school with all the hype about celebrity culture. Her life in L.A. seems to have been already written for her, but when her junior year starts, it all takes a drastic turn. When she crosses paths with the school's heartthrob, Nate Werner, they fall for each other in a way neither can understand. What they don’t know is that by giving in to their desires, they are unlocking an ancient Egyptian prophecy that threatens to return Earth to the dark ages.

To undo the curse, Nate and Sophie embark on an adventure that takes them across the country. But their quest is not only to save the world as they know it. It is also a fight for their very survival. Behind the scenes, there are those that are counting on them to fail.

Happy book birthday, Teresa! 

I read The Year of the Great Seventh in the span over the course of two days recently, and I can tell you that this book can logically be divided into a "before" and "after" section - "before" the trip to New York and "after" the trip to New York. It took me a day and a half to read "before." I finished "after" in a few hours. yes, The Year of the Great Seventh starts out a bit slow. But, when the action and intrigue picked up, so did the rest of the story, and I couldn't wait to find out what happened next. 

Sophie is a fish out of water in LA. She wants to be a historian instead of someone rich and famous like everyone else around her. She has a master plan - straight As and a scholarship to NYU. Then, Nate Werner bursts onto her scene - like, LITERALLY - and all of a sudden, her whole outlook on her future is thrown for a loop, along with everything she thought was real and legend. 

Sophie was pretty cool. She had all the qualities I like in my heroines. She was brave, not afraid to get her hands dirty, not one to have a man save her all the time, and best of all, she's smart. The independent smart girls are so much better to read about than the wimpy, vapid waifs who wring their hands and wait for a knight in shining armor to save them. 

Nate was also a well developed character. He was misunderstood, honorable, nice, and a bit of a bad boy. I really liked he and Sophie together - they seemed to fit pretty well. 

Mythology is one of my most favorite things to read about. I've always had a passion for it and an interest in it. In this case, we focus on Egyptian mythology. Orts did a great job researching all the history surrounding Cleopatra and Marc Antony's relationship and the time period in which they lived. There was also quite a bit about Nostradamus and his predictions. It was a complexly-weaved plot with a "National Treasure"-esque feel to it (and I loved that movie, so that's a good thing!). 

What brought The Year of the Great Seventh down a bit for me was the extreme case of insta-love. Nate pulls a very Twilight move by playing the I'm-no-good-for-you-so-you-need-to-stay-away-from-me card, and after having only one very brief interaction with him, Sophie is absolutely devastated. Like, starts failing her classes and lying to her friends and family devastated. 

As you might expect, there was a mythological connection between their attraction and what all else was going on, but it still reeked of teen insta-love, which is one of my biggest pet peeves in books. 

That being said, this was still a great book, especially if you love mythology like I do. If you would like to check it out for yourself, stay tuned. Later this month, Teresa Orts is hosting The Year of the Great Seventh blog tour (which I have a stop on!), and you'll have the opportunity to get your mythological treasure-hunting self on. Check out the banner to the right for more details, and check out all the tour stops when it's time. Hunt down the clues for a chance to win copies of The Year of the Great Seventh for yourself! 

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