Series or Stand Alone: Mystyx series, book one
Release Date: July 2010
Publisher: Harlequin Enterprises, Limited
Author Site: http://www.artistarthurbooks.com/
My Rating: 3.25/5
Source: Won from giveaway from Shut Up! I'm Reading
When fifteen-year-old Krystal Bentley moves to Lincoln, Connecticut, her mom's hometown, she assumes her biggest drama will be adjusting to the burbs after living in New York City.
But Lincoln is nothing like Krystal imagined. The weirdness begins when Ricky Watson starts confiding in her. He's cute, funny, a good listener—and everything she'd ever want—except that he was killed nearly a year ago. Krystal's ghost-whispering talents soon lead other "freaks" to her door—Sasha, a rich girl who can literally disappear, and Jake, who moves objects with his mind. All three share a distinctive birthmark in the shape of an M and, fittingly, call themselves the Mystyx. They set out to learn what really happened to Ricky, only to realize that they aren't the only ones with mysterious powers. But if Krystal succeeds in finding out the truth about Ricky's death, will she lose him for good?
Krystal is understandably filled with teenage angst. For starters, her mother divorced her father with no explanation and then remarried to a butthead with control issues. She's forced to move to nowhere, Connecticut and attend a new school. Oh, and she hears and sees dead people. Even though she hasn't heard one for quite a while, hitting fifteen has brought the ghosts back. Ricky has been murdered and he's relentless in his pursuit of Krystal's help. Of course, Krystal is afraid. But as time goes by she notices how cute, funny, and nice Ricky is. Too bad he's dead...
Ghosts aren't the only issue in Krystal's life. Along with her family problems, two kids at school have taken quite an interest in her and her mysterious birthmark; a birthmark they all seem to share. Krystal soon discovers that she isn't the only "freak" in Lincoln. They all share some powerful and supernatural abilities that may help solve Ricky's murder. It also may shed some light on why the teens have never really felt normal.
Although it’s been a couple of months since she first moved to Lincoln, she has no friends or acquaintances for that matter. She basically ignores or pushes all interactions with people away. Her days are really just get up, go to school, don’t talk to anyone, eat lunch while listening to music, go home, go to room, eat with family (maybe), go back to room, and sleep. Fuuuun. So despite being a brat about life I still found myself somewhat empathetic towards her. She wasn’t a favorite character of mine but one that I certainly cared about at times. Especially towards the end, when reality smacked her in the face, she got her act somewhat together. It was nice to see her attitude change and things start to go more smoothly for her because I did feel bad for her at times. She was given the poop end of the stick in some aspects.
I didn’t like that she was so infatuated with Ricky. I mean I didn’t mind the fact that she was, I just didn’t see the cause of her swooning over the kid. Her interactions with him were hardly crush-worthy and the boy’s dead for another matter, not that I frown upon relationships with ghosts. I thought their relationship could have been worked on more because I assumed going into the book that it would be this tragic romantic thing between the two…and it really wasn’t. Ricky wasn’t a bad character or anything; he was just more of a background character in my eyes.
Sasha and Jake, the other Mystyx members, are interesting. It was funny to see Sasha’s personality change…funny and weird. She was nice one minute, pissed the next; aggressive and friendly, the girl is a roller coaster. Jake is mysterious. Not a lot of light was shed on him but that only makes me want to know more about him. I like his protective streak. He seems sweet but guarded. I’m interested in seeing both of their stories in the upcoming books.
The entire Mystyx supernatural idea was interesting. The fact that storms/weather and Krystal’s new hometown have a lot to do with the trio’s power was a cool touch. I’m intrigued to know more about their powers because they seem to grow and/or evolve as time goes by. I like the fact that each of the members has a colored theme: Krystal is blue, Sasha is pink, and Jake is green. Their powers make their matching birthmarks glow a distinctive color and I’m a nerd and like that sort of thing.
So overall, Manifest was pretty okay. I enjoyed it enough to want to continue on with Sasha’s story.
P.S. (cover talk)
Not a lot going on but it’s still an okay cover. I like the smoky effect and the blue is a nice touch (see above for nerdy color love). It’s pretty but a little on the boring side.