Author: Rebecca Lim
Published: May 17, 2011
Genre: YA, Paranormal
Mercy has lost herself. She can’t count how many times she’s “woken up” in a new body, and assumed a new life, only to move on again and again. During the day she survives in the human world on instinct and at night her dreams are haunted by him. Mercy’s heart would know him anywhere. But her memory refuses to cooperate.
But this time is different. When Mercy wakes up she meets Ryan, an eighteen year old reeling from the loss of his twin sister who was kidnapped two years ago. Everyone else has given up hope, but Ryan believes his sister is still alive. Using a power she doesn’t fully comprehend, Mercy realizes that Ryan is right. His sister is alive and together they can find her. For the first time since she can remember, Mercy has a purpose; she can help. So she doesn’t understand why the man in her dreams cautions her not to interfere. But as Ryan and Mercy come closer to solving the dark mystery of his sister’s disappearance, danger looms just one step behind.
Mercy's new body is as unfamiliar as the world around her, but it's the same as it's always been for her. She doesn't quite remember her lives before, but in short instants, she'll have flashes of memories of a past she can't recall. Her new body is a teenage girl with a voice so gorgeous it could make grown men cry, but she's your average, awkward teenager, attempting to meddle through this thing called life while on a music exchange program. The family hosting her is struggling with their own loss - their daughter, and Ryan's sister, disappeared almost two years ago. Ryan is the only one still holding out hope that she's alive, and Mercy can sense he's right. To help him though, she must face the unknown and the dangers with it. Can they find Lauren in time, or will Mercy lose herself in the process?
I'm just going to throw this out there...I'm pretty sure there's something in the water in Australia that makes these authors such geniuses (and I'd like some of it, please). Author Rebecca Lim has created a breathtaking start to a new saga series with Mercy that is brimming with tangible characters, sweet romance and a teasing mystery that sends the reader in circles of self-discovery. Blending a powerful theme of free will and the nature of humanity, the author has seamlessly woven an intricate story that transcends the YA genre and provides both a meaning and purpose for the reader.
Mercy was a very multi-faceted character. There were so many layers to her that I felt the entire book was a maze of revelations. She began as a bit of a shadow. You saw her talent and her current "host," but you didn't really get to see who she was as a person. Part of the beauty of Mercy was that the exploration of Mercy's character was hidden in layers throughout the plot points, the mystery and the romance. Ryan was the perfect complement to her character. Too often I see whiny female protags. To see a male character with true vulnerability and purpose finding comfort and hope in a strong female protag was utterly refreshing. Another highlight of Mercy for me was the story of music that was enmeshed in the overall plot. Partially metaphorical and wholeheartedly beautiful, the music added an element of pure, unadulterated beauty to Mercy. The only issue (though not really an issue) I had with Mercy was that the romance was hinted at but never really fulfilled. In the same breath though, one might make a case for that being great for the next book.
Overall, Mercy was an outstanding paranormal read with a great new take on a pretty popular concept now. I give it a very strong 4.5 out of 5, and I'd highly recommend it to fans of YA, especially those who enjoy paranormal stories involving angels. It's also great for those who enjoy a sweet romance and a mystery.
I received this book free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.