Monday, April 28, 2014

{Review} UNDERLAKE by Kia Heavey

ISBN #: 978-0615956046
Page Count: 326
Copyright: February 27, 2014
Publisher: Unfiltered Creative

(Taken from back cover)

Pampered and cultured Katie Welch has had the same friends her entire life, but lately she doesn't fit in anymore. Then her mother drags her to a remote farm town where the local kids are friendly, but they don't know the real her. Even the grownups in her life seem to have lost their way. In the throes of growing up and growing apart, Katie discovers the most unusual boy swimming in her lake and for the first time in memory, she connects. John is refreshingly old-fashioned and wise in ways Katie has never encountered before, but it's clear he's hiding something. Katie is just so happy to have someone she can relate to, she's willing to defy her mother and ignore the warning signs. She does so at her own risk.

Charlene's Review:

When Katie Welch’s mom drags her out into the country, Katie is determined to be miserable. She makes a few friends, and is enamored by a strange boy that she watches swimming in the lake. She finds herself falling in love with the farming town, and with her new friends, especially John, the lake boy. John has a dark secret, though, and falling for him could mean the end of the life Katie holds so dear.

Underlake is a complex story written to delight and empower the reader. Classified as Young Adult, I felt it was beautifully done for girls searching for their own voice. Katie is a young girl that most girls can identify with as she struggles with following the crowd versus personal values. Combining the mythical with a coming-of-age story, and a nod to Christian fiction, Ms. Heavey writes a story that captivates the reader. The ending is not at all what I expected but left me pleasantly surprised, not disappointed.

Having a heroine that isn’t afraid to stand out and be different was refreshing. Ms. Heavey starts the book with the dedication, "For girls everywhere who are less than thrilled with the popular things." I was very impressed with the values expressed by Katie in the book, and while the church and personal beliefs were discussed, it never felt preachy, but just another aspect to the storyline.

Underlake is a refreshing change of pace in a fast-paced, feel-good world of conformity. I highly recommend it for young girls and will be gifting mine to my niece.

5 out of 5 stars!

*A physical copy of the book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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