11 September 2014

Into the Blind by Helen Rena

Into the Blind
by Helen Rena.
Audience/Genre: Young Adult, Urban Fantasy .
Publication: June 2014.
In a world where everyone is gifted, be it in dancing, lightning-bringing, or death-giving, Ever is born…all-powerful.

For this gift, she is kidnapped and trafficked at birth. Fifteen years later, Ever still hasn’t seen even a glimmer of her powerful gift. Locked in an abandoned mall in New York City, she’s fighting to survive her captivity, her brutal guards, and the other gifted kids in her cell. She would do anything to escape.

Fox is gifted with time manipulation. Like Ever, he hasn’t come into his gift yet; like Ever, he hates the mall; and like Ever, he longs to be free. But there’s one thing he values above his freedom—it’s Ever’s love…

…yet, when the two make a desperate attempt to escape, this attempt proves so dark and twisted that it just might destroy Ever’s love for Fox.

Reviewed by Kelly.

First, I want to thank Helen Rena for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This book has a world all of its own. Reminds me of Alice in Wonderland and Inception (the movie). You have to pay attention because things are different yet remain the same and always changing. Yes, that is confusing but that is the way it goes.

This is a world where everyone is born with gifts and nightmares are real. Some gifts are coveted and children are bought and sold at birth for them. This story is a story of 4 teenagers who have lived in a mall in a bookstore trapped in a prison there for their gifts that some of them haven’t come to fruition yet. There is Ever and Fox. Fox loves Ever. Ever is supposed to be a heart. Meaning she could give you emotions and strong feelings. Fox is supposed to be time. Then there is Demi and Sinna. They also love each other. Demi is a goddess and Sinna can make nightmares.

Then they find a chance one night to escape. They find themselves in New York. They only have so many hours until the feelings the Queen gives them will make it possible to leave Her. The Queen is also a heart. She makes everyone every morning love her completely. They all feel trapped but also love Her. Ever finds she can do the same as the Queen.

The battle to survive is overwhelming at times. I would have given up because it seemed so hopeless at times. Every morning you wake up and the city has rearranged itself. Demi is getting sick of Ever but she is strong. Sinna seems to be getting more and more tired and states he can’t sleep. Fox wants to take control of the whole situation. You see, Fox loves her and wants to protect her. Ever can’t see. Well, technically she can’t. But she can see through other’s eyes. So that is how she survives there.

There is a race against time to leave New York and live. There are injuries to them that are mounting and sooner than later it could be fatal.

Ever comes into her gift and Fox doesn’t want her to use it. Because if a heart bends, meaning uses it to persuade other, that person will become evil. Sometimes that is the only way they have to survive.

In the end, I yelled “oh no, she didn’t” because she left me hanging! Got to read the next book to find out what happens because I didn’t like what happened at the end, it was utterly heartbreaking (no pun intended). This world is about to totally change again in the next book, which is like mind blowing!

When reading this book, I had to really concentrate, due to the complexity of the scenery always changing and with the life being a little different than our real world. That is my only complaint, which is really not a bad thing just more complex and causing me to read a little slower to keep up.

So, if you like Alice in Wonderland, the movie Inception, the Matrix, racing against time, trying to find your way out of a maze, having supernatural gifts, dystopian books, finding it hard to know if you love someone because of your gift or were you made to feel that way than this is the book for you.

An Excerpt...
And the Queen of Hell will come to rule the Earth, and everyone will love Her.
—Delilah 6:66

A Heart Child
The black market was closing. The last sellers and buyers clustered behind an out-of-business toy store in Brooklyn, where the road smelled of trash and the subway trains that ran high above the street rattled the loudest. There were no children for sale at this hour. The last and least important bits of the day’s tidings were hastily sold.
“There’s been a dance kid born in Queens this morning.”
“Hell, who needs a child gifted in dancing?”
“But it’s right around the corner. And the parents haven’t hired any security.”
Monies changed hands.
Everyone was stealthily watching two bulky men who were not selling or buying anything. The slightly shorter man of the duo held a large four-wheel suitcase, and the slightly taller one, wearing a trench coat and a black fedora hat, gripped a gun. They did not talk. They had the letters DH tattooed on their right cheekbones.
Cars honked in the street, and somewhere far off a police siren howled.
A woman entered the alley. Neither tall nor short, she wore a pixie-cut blond wig like a ski hat: pulled down over her ears and forehead. Her shoulders were wrapped in an oversized faux fur coat that made it impossible to guess her real proportions. Her eyes were hidden behind a pair of dark sunglasses.
The men with the DH tattoos looked up at her simultaneously. They didn’t say anything, but the woman answered them nonetheless, “Yes, it’s here, the child.” She nodded at a rather small purse in her hand. “And the money?”
The black market sellers and buyers stopped even pretending they were still trading. They held their breaths and listened. All of them had wondered if the suitcase held money, but it was such a big suitcase. No child was worth that much.
The man with the suitcase lightly swung his burden. “Yeah. Ten mil. Wanna count?”
The fedora hat man puffed. “Wait, bro. I don’t think…you know what.”
The bro clearly knew. “Lay off it, man. We talked enough about it.”
“Oh, yeah?” The hat man jabbed his gun in the direction of the woman’s purse, a fake brown leather affair with an ugly brass zipper. “This kid…how do you know it’s gifted in what this gal says it’s gifted? Yeah, sure, two dream guys told us it’s legit, but what if they are in on it? Ten mil is good money even split three ways.”
The bro shook his head. “I said. Lay. Off. It.”
The hat man didn’t. “And where did she even get that kid? Sure, Bones…I mean, not Bones…I mean, I never said your name, okay? Anyways, we bought death kids, time kids—pricey kids, yes, but those gifts can be priced in. But this…a kid with this gift…who would sell it? It’s like selling the Almighty!”
The people in the alley inhaled sharply. A heart child had been born on earth? That was some tidings to sell.
The woman in the fur coat stepped away from the two men. “Fine. The deal is off.”
Bones shoved the suitcase after her. “No, no, take it. Give us the kid.”
The woman grabbed the handle of the suitcase, then handed him the purse.
“Are you at least going to check if it’s actually a kid and not a pile of rags?” the hat man asked his partner.
Bones unzipped the purse, and there, swaddled in several disposable diapers, lay a newborn, its face tiny and pink and its delicate white hairs tangled. It slept.
The woman suddenly, as if in a paroxysm of a strong feeling, clasped the hat man’s arm. “It’s a girl,” she said. “A girl.”
The hat man, unsure what to do with this information, scratched his temple. “And? You want to give us a discount for that or what?”
The woman spun around and walked away, wheeling the suitcase along the cracked, rot-smelling road.
The hat man followed her with his gaze. “If this kid is really a heart, I’ll eat my damn hat.”
The hat remained uneaten for the next fifteen years.

Helen Rena loves reading and writing novels. And short stories. And flash fiction. She has a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, and a vast collection of books and green bottles. She is still not sure why green bottles. She lives in Southern Oregon with her husband and two children.

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  1. Hi, Kelly! Thank you so much for hosting me today. And many thanks for the review. <3 I am so happy you liked the books.

  2. That sounds amazing! I am definitely adding it to my TBR list.