Thursday, February 21

Review: Changling by Kelly Meding

This is the second book in the MetaWars series by Kelly Meding.  This book is told from the point of view of Dahlia Perkins, aka Ember.  We were introduced to her in the first book, as a newly found Meta with the ability to absorb flames and heat.  6 months have passed since the ending of Trance and the former Rangers are working on putting together the house that they will be using as a base of operations. We find out that Dahlia has access to a trust fund set up by the father that she has never seen, as she was an illegitimate child.  She uses this money to purchase and refurbish the large mansion and grounds that the team is living on.  Currently, the team is also starting to work some small cases with the LAPD and starting to gain the trust of the local law enforcement agency.

It is during their first big case, called out to discuss what exactly happened to all the insides of a man left near a dumpster downtown that this book really gets going.  All that is left of the gentleman is the outer skin, kind of like a slip cover.  At first the team is afraid that it is the work of another Meta, but it is not a skill any of them had ever heard of before.  The team finds out this is not the first such case and start looking into the background of the first man found.  He was a janitor at a facility called Weatherfield.  One that Dahlia is familiar with, as she investigated it during college and ended up graduating last in her class due to not able to substantiate claims she made about the facility.

During this time, Dahlia is also put in charge of hiring an electrical company to redo and update the team's base.  She vaguely remembers going to high school with a student who's family were electricians and decides to start with them.  Upon meeting Noah, the boy she once had a crush on, running the family business, Dahlia's feelings are rekindle and it looks like romance is in bloom.  Unfortunately, things are not what they seem, in either situation.

I went into this book really hoping to love it as much as the first one. But I found that wasn't to be the case.  First of all, the main character changed to Dahlia, and I hadn't really connected with her from the first book.  Second, all the fun comic book action of the first one was hard to find in this second book.  And finally, I just kept going "Say What?" due to the outlandish plot points.  I know, I know, the series is about people who basically have super powers in a futuristic world that has been ravaged by their in-fighting.  But it just felt like this second book took a sharp right turn away from where it was headed.  There wasn't even a good resolution to the book.  I finished reading it feeling, just "meh".  I am giving it 2 stars on Goodreads.  Such a disappointment from the first book, Trance.  


The second in a new series by popular urban fantasy author Kelly Meding, about an X-Men-like group of young people with superpowers who must find a way to work together.

Five months ago, Dahlia Perkins was a struggling newspaper journalist whose biggest responsibility was paying her rent on time. After learning she has the ability to absorb and deflect massive amounts of heat and fire, Dahlia is struggling to find her place as the newest hero in an established team of former Rangers freelancing their abilities in post-Meta War Los Angeles.

The team’s first major case: two discarded human skins. One is a John Doe, the other was a janitor for Weatherfield R&D, a scientific research and development firm Dahlia once investigated—and she’s itching to investigate them again. The ability to use and shed another person’s skin isn’t a power any of them have encountered before, nor something any of their former Meta enemies possess. But when a third skin appears and one of Dahlia’s teammates is nearly killed by an assassin’s bullet, it’s clear someone else besides Weatherfield is targeting the Rangers—and their killer may not be Meta at all.

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