Authors: FJR Titchenell, Matt Carter
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Sci-fi
Series: The Prospero Chronicles #1
Trade Paperback, 328 pages
Publication: September 23, 2014 by Jolly Fish Press
Source: I received a review copy in exchange for a honest review and blog tour.
Under ordinary circumstances, Ben and Mina would never have had reason to speak to each other; he's an easy-going people person with a healthy skepticism about the paranormal, and she's a dangerously obsessive monster-hunter with a crippling fear of betrayal. But the small town of Prospero, California, has no ordinary circumstances to offer. In order to uncover a plot set by the seemingly innocent but definitely shapeshifting monsters-that-look-like-friends-family-and-neighbors, the two stark opposites must both find ways to put aside their differences and learn to trust each other.
Splinters is the first book in The Prospero Chronicles series following two teenagers in the small town of Prospero, California. Ben Pastors is in town with his mom for his childhood friend Haley’s funeral. Ben overwhelmed with the funeral procession steps outside for fresh air when all of a sudden the girl in which they’re at the funeral for bursts out of the forest dirty and naked. Ben who was in the right place, at the right time gets labeled as a hero as he helps Haley back on her feet. What’s strange is that Haley been missing for over two months and everyone thought she died. What’s stranger is a girl he doesn’t know passes him a message in secret with only three words: It isn’t Haley. Strange doesn’t even beginning to describe the people of Prospero, California…not even close.
When I began this book I thought it’d be more paranormal but I was pleasantly surprised to find it’s a combination of paranormal and sci-fi. Splinters is very reminiscent of the old movie Invasion of the Body Snatcher, and the book The Host by Stephanie Meyers and American Elsewhere by Robert Bennett except that it’s lighter and aimed at a younger audience. The town of Prospero is slowly being overrun by Splinters, small centipede-like creatures either by latching on to the minds of animals or replicating/impersonating a member of the townspeople (a process in which the fake double splinter takes over a person life, and the real person is stowed away in a pod). Mina, our heroine has been dealing with splinters since she was eight-years-old, and now at sixteen she just takes the job more seriously making her a social outcast. Mina and her two friends make up her team of monster hunters. Mina has set her sight on newcomer Ben as a possible recruit, and does whatever it takes to convince him of aliens all while protecting him from getting snatched. Readers along with Ben learn all about the world of Splinters as Mina gives him 411 on a list of possible splinters, the best way to harm them, and where it all began/where they came from. For the majority of the book readers tag along with Ben and Mina as they try to find the Splinters’ secret location, in hopes of exposing them and saving whoever is trapped in the pods. Splinters was a pretty quick read, with plenty of action scenes and banter that kept me glued to the page till the very end. I enjoyed the duo narrative alternating each chapter between Ben and Mina, it gave a better perspective of the characters especially Mina who is somewhat socially awkward.
Mina is not only shunned by her peers but pretty much the entire town. She is so enveloped with chasing down possible splinters that she has no semblance of a normal life. I actually loved Mina’s awkwardness, it made her more endearing. Mina is extremely smart, sensible, brave and totally kick-butt. It never mattered that people called her nasty name, or didn’t believe her about the Splinters…she would still go out of her way to protect her town even if meant endangering herself in the process. Then there’s Ben, an easy-going guy that’s charming and likeable; the total opposite of Mina. Ben was skeptical and a little more than freaked out when Mina first propositioned him to join her team, but in the end he was open-minded about the whole thing. I thought Ben was great for Mina. He helped her breakout of her shell and kind of just live a little. While they’re total opposite, they were perfect for each other and they help balance one another out. There isn’t any romance in this book (which I didn’t mind), but the end did promise a budding romance in the next book (I hope).
Overall I enjoyed Splinters, it was full of action just the way I liked it and had an ending that was totally unexpected (in a good way). Splinters is a great start to a new series, and I believe adults and teens of all ages will enjoy this one…a book worth checking out!
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ABOUT THE AUTHORS
J.R TITCHENELL and MATT CARTER met and fell in love in a musical theatre class at Pasadena City College and have been inseparable ever since. Though they have both dreamed of being writers from a very young age, they both truly hit their stride after they met, bouncing ideas off of one another, forcing each other to strive to be better writers, and mingling Matt's lifelong love of monsters with Fiona's equally disturbing inability to let go of high school. They were married in 2011 in a ceremony that involved kilts, Star Wars music, and a cake topped by figurines of them fighting a zombified wedding party.
Titchenell and Carter live in San Gabriel, California.
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