Tuesday, December 11, 2012

{A Kelly Coffee Review} SelfSame by Melissa Conway

Title: SelfSame
Author: Melissa Conway
Genre: YA History/ Paranormal
Publisher: Self-Published


A stillborn child revived. The past and the future intertwined. One girl lives two very different lives.

By all appearances, Sorcha Sloane is a typical small-town teen taking twenty-first century life for granted. While two centuries in the past, Enid Thompson is a poor farmer’s daughter in colonial New England. But Enid and Sorcha are the selfsame girl – one soul split between two bodies in a link that stretches across time. Every night while Enid’s body is sleeping, she wakes in the future as Sorcha, just as the old medicine man prophesied at her birth. And every night when Sorcha sleeps, she wakes in the past as Enid, in a frontier world on the brink of war. She only trusts a chosen few with the truth, until Ben Webster comes into Sorcha’s life and tells her his family has been desperately searching for her for over two hundred years…

 As you've probably noticed, I've had a bit more time to read lately, and today was the sort of day made for curling up with a book, blanket and cup of something warm. So I finally sat down and decided to get through a book I've been meaning to get to for months. 

I received this book after reading another one by the author (Xenofreak Nation) and being wowed by it. Still, despite being enthralled by the author, I just wasn't quite sure that the premise was for me. I should have known better. 

SelfSame is a wonderful, original book. The way she integrates Enid and Sorcha's lives, integrates the people in them, just the way she develops the characters, they're all just fantastically done. The realities of a Colonial life, the disparity between social norms, the way that Sorcha and Enid are the same girl, but different, they're all masterfully crafted. And in Conway's books, I'm finding that everything is connected.

There is a supreme subtlety to Conway's writing that just draws you effortlessly into her books, her world. She hints and alludes before delivering with the promised secrets (the great "ah" moments when everything makes perfect sense), but she walks a fine line that is delivering the payout without dwelling on it or beating the reader over the head with it.

Although the point-of-view changes between Enid and Sorcha, they are basically the same mind in different bodies. This means that although the setting changes, there isn't that jarring cut-off that is usually found in a changing POV. The transitions are virtually seamless. It makes for a quick and absorbing read. 

I don't know why I waited so long to find time to read this one, but you shouldn't. It's an entirely immersing and satisfying read. And I anxiously look forward to more from this author. 

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