81. If you've never read Natalie Whipple's blog--you should do so. Right now. Especially if you see yourself as an aspiring writer of any type. Her blog is refreshingly honest--and funny. Plus, she does her own anime art.
Her debut novel, Transparent, came out earlier this year. Transparent tells the story of Fiona McClean, a young woman born into a crime syndicate run by her father, in a dystopian world where much of the population has some kind of mutation. All her life, Fiona's aspired primarily to make her father happy (a unique effect he has on women). And for Fiona, this means lying, stealing--using her unique abilities to do things no one else can do.
Because Fiona is invisible. Even she doesn't know what she looks like.
But out of the range of her father's influence, Fiona hates who she is, who she's become to please him. So when he orders her to carry out a hit on some innocent people, Fiona refuses. She and her mother go into hiding in a small town in Arizona, where Fiona figures she'll just pass the time until they can find some place better to be safe.
Except that she finds she loves it. She loves the quirky new friends she makes, and she's attracted by local hot guy Brody. When her father's threat gets closer, she finds that she's willing to do almost anything to keep her new life.
I though this story was cute. I liked Fiona as a character and I enjoyed watching her relationships unfold. In some ways, it reminded me of Kiersten White's Paranormalcy--particularly in the heroine with unique gifts who attends high school for the first time. Fiona's not quite as snarky as Evie, but I think they'd like each other.
Readers who look for a lot of depth in their stories won't find it here--but readers looking for a fun, clean YA read with dystopian elements will enjoy it.