The Forever Girl: Sophia’s Journey (The Forever Girl Series, Volume 1)
Author: Rebecca Hamilton
Publication Date: January 26, 2012
Publisher: Immortal Ink Publishing
E-book Pages: 5200
Genre: Contemporary Fantasy, Occult
Source: Won it from the Author
Book Description from Amazon: Sophia Parsons’ family has skeletons, but they aren’t in their graves…
Solving the mystery of an ancestor’s hanging might silence the clashing whispers in Sophia’s mind, but the cult in her town and the supernaturals who secretly reside there are determined to silence her first.
As Sophia unknowingly crosses the line into an elemental world full of vampire-like creatures, shapeshifters, and supernatural grim reapers, she meets Charles, a man who becomes both lover and ally.
But can she trust him?
It’s not until someone nearly kills Sophia that she realizes the only way to unveil the source of her family’s curse: abandon her faith or abandon her humanity. If she wants to survive, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.
Upon reading the description for this book, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this, it was so unassuming, but the first few sentences captured my attention and it wouldn’t let me put it down until I finished the book.
In the beginning of a story we usually get insight into the main character’s normal day to day life, and when we first meet Sophia Parsons it’s immediately apparent that her life is far from normal. She hears voices, whispers and practises Wiccan arts in order to try and quell these voices. As the voices become more persistent and louder, Sophia digs through her family’s past to try and find a solution, but what she finds and what finds her, is so much more than she bargained for.
The cover of this edition is especially eye-catching, which features a girl dressed in Gothic Lolita style with gorgeous intricate black jewellery and lace parasol, set against the model’s stark skin and blond hair with emphatic eye makeup creates a bold contrast. Especially when the background to the model is reminiscent of a colourful fall day.
Hamilton's writing is so smooth and descriptive, it keeps you enthralled and lets the scenes play out graphically in your head easily as you read (especially the scenes with the whispers, they will haunt me for a while). The story takes the bare bones of many concepts such as vampires, witches and shapeshifters and completely reinvents them into something new. The story had so many supernatural elements in it, I wondered at how Hamilton would pull it together, but then she completely blows you out of the water with the reveals and everything clicks into place - which just ends up leaving the reader wanting to know more!
I really enjoyed reading from Sophia’s perspective. She’s such a likable character because she’s strong willed and doesn’t let other’s opinions phase her. She’s loyal and uses whatever she can to defend her friends be it her smarts or her power, but she’s also not an over the top super hero, she knows when to ask for help from her friends. She also has so much patience… her interactions with the super religious cult leader Mrs. Franklin and her brainwashed cult following mother are outwardly calm and logical, even though when I was reading I was screaming frustrations at the pages, they were such well written antagonists.
When we first meet Charles, it’s the banter between him and Sophia that had me rooting for him. They are adorable together! Then he gets really mysterious as the plot thickens and he has a major hero complex that gets worked out frequently and not always to the results he wants. As a boyfriend to Sophia, their relationship is pretty iffy at the beginning, but it eventually leads to some pretty steamy scenes.
The other characters such as Adrian, Ivory and Lauren worked really well as supports for Sophia, but what really caught me off guard was how when I had pushed one of these to the back of my mind as a boring background character they suddenly come roaring back as an integral character to the underlying plot.
All in all this was a really enjoyable read and I cannot wait to read more from Rebecca Hamilton!
Rating: 5/5 Steaming Cups Of Tea!