Jul 13, 2012

Posted by in Reviews | 12 Comments

Review: Changeling by Kelly Meding (Meta Wars #2)

Urban Fantasy
June 26 2012
Mass Market Paperback
384 pages
Pocket Books

Kick Ass Chick – Dahlia Perkins

From Goodreads –
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.

———-

Holy f*ck!  Seriously, and in all honesty, those were the first two words out of my mouth when I finished this book.  Thank goodness the kids weren’t around.  But my aunt and uncle were.  They just pretended they didn’t hear me and walked away.  That was a good idea; I needed some time on my own to let things soak in a bit.

Changeling by Kelly Meding is the second book in her Meta Wars series and it is a non-stop-you-barely-have-time-to-breath sort of book.  There are SO many twists that I totally lost count.  And most of these twists are of the “whoa…” variety.  I mean, where does Kelly come up with this stuff?!  Her imagination never ceases to amaze me.  I’m thinking that it’s not a pretty place in her head but boy is it ever full of crazy messed-up-in-the-very-best-way stuff.  And I am so glad she chooses to share it with us.

In this series, each book is told from a different character’s point of view.  That alone I find really cool.  The first book, Trance, was about and told from Teresa/Trance’s perspective.  Super heroes, and of course super villains, were everywhere a while back when suddenly they all lost their powers only to gain them once again out of the blue one day.  Trance is about how the heroes and villains deal with receiving their powers and about how Teresa becomes leader of the good-guys.  Changeling is told from Dahlia/Ember’s point of view.  She didn’t have powers before – they just sort of showed up when the other Metas (good-guys with super powers) got theirs back.  In this book we follow how she is adapting and what she learns about herself.  Boy, do we ever.

I do like Dahlia quite a bit.  She’s a little lost and a little awkward but she wants to be self-confident and sure of herself and her powers.  Even though she can absorb heat and is good with fire, she seems completely real.  She takes everything that she learns about herself really well.  And trust me, she learns a boat load.  She grows quite a bit in this book and her journey is nice to watch.  As for what she is doing next…that is going to be interesting to see.  I am assuming Kelly will be touching on that in the next book (which is going to be told from Ethan’s perspective).

All of the regulars that we meet in the first book are back of course.  Teresa (love her), Gage (love him), Marco (love him), Renee (I really want to like her) and Marco (love him).  There are also a slew of new characters that we meet in this installment and they all play a very important role in the story…and that’s all I am going to say about them.  *grin*

One thing that I found Kelly did exceptionally well is what she did with the villain.  At first, we think he is terrible and doing horrible things.  We want him to hurt.  Then we find out that he’s not that bad and that maybe there is a reason for what he is doing.  Then she has us questioning whether or not he really even IS a villain.  We think maybe he’s just misunderstood and deserves a fair chance like everyone else.  I can’t tell you how many times I questioned my feelings for the villain while reading this.  Kelly, really, you outdid yourself with this one.

I would go into the story a little more with you but really, there is just too much to tackle so I’m not even going to try.  You just have to read it.  Can you jump right into this one without having read the first book?  I think so.  But it really is neat to see how the characters deal with getting their powers back and how they come together as a group for one common goal and that’s all told in the first book.  It’s a good read and very different from anything I’ve ever read.  I mean, it’s about people with super powers!  And it’s dark and edgy and gritty and is full of Kelly’s crazy imagination that I talked about earlier.  The next book is going to be released through Simon and Schuster’s new Pocket Star venture that will specialize in Digital-First books.  Tempest is due out in 2013.

I’m telling you, when I finished this book I went to my reading schedule and changed it around a bit so I can squeeze in a contemporary read.  Changeling drained me completely…in an utterly wonderful way.  It was impossible not to get immediately invested in this story, gripping you from page one.  It made me think about what truly makes a villain and what truly makes a hero.  Overall, this book left me on my a** but left me there knowing that I had just read one hell of a book.

5 stars

Notable quotes –

I was too busy freaking out to write any of them down.  Besides, writing them down meant I had to put the book down for a minute…and that was so not going to happen.

Books in the Meta Wars series –
Trance
Changeling
Tempest (2013)
Chimera (2013)

  1. I haven’t read the first book but after this review I think I need to read it soon to be able to read this one. As always great review.

  2. Okay, you have totally sold me on this series Julie! Great review.

  3. Ann-Catrin Sköld says:

    Oh, I agree with both BookaholicCat and aurian!
    So as soon as I finish the book I´m reading at this moment I´m going for the first in this series, Trance!
    😀

  4. Kelly Meding says:

    OMG, Julie, I want to put this on my business cards: “I’m thinking that it’s not a pretty place in her head but boy is it ever full of crazy messed-up-in-the-very-best-way stuff.” LOL!

    So glad to hear to you enjoyed Changleling (although I’m sorry it made you curse in front of your family). *grin*

  5. Sounds good 🙂 I did read the first book in her other series and has not read more, but this is another one

  6. wow OK I need to start the series NOW!!! lol, I have the first one since its realease but haven”t the time to get into it, I’ll try to do it soon now. thanks for the review!

  7. OMG Julie! What a review!!! Ok, like Melliane, I got the two books on my shelves but now, they can’t stay there for long!!! Thank you Julie! 😉

  8. I need to check this one out, I love her Dreg City series, this one sounds great too.
    Thanks you Julie.

  9. Ann-Catrin Sköld says:

    Now I´ve read the first one, Trance, and I´ll start with Changeling right away!

    Addictive, almost… 😉

  10. Ann-Catrin Sköld says:

    Det var som själva fan!!!!

    That was what I said when I finished this book!
    And when I said those words (swedish, guys)I started to giggle when I remebered this review, and your “Holy f*ck!” :DD

    I won´t translate what I said, but I guess you can guess! 😀

    Wow! What a story! And what a storyteller!

  11. Bookaholic Cat – I am really curious to see what you think. I know you’ll enjoy it, that’s for sure, but how many paws…I wonder. lol

    aurian – Enjoy!

    Ann-Catrin – I LOVE hearing how you enjoyed the first book and picked up the second book only to use colorful language like me! LOL I am crazy happy you liked the books. Kelly is an incredible story teller – you are SO completely right!

    Kelly – I was really hoping you knew I meant that in a good way. LOL And no you are not one bit sorry you caused me to cuss in front of my family. 😉

    blodeuedd – Completely different from her other series. Completely.

    melliane – Ah the life of a blogger… Always trying to juggle your reading to include books your peers tell you to read. lol I hope you get to these soon. 🙂

    Zendastark – Can’t wait to read your review! 🙂

    Lupdilup – You’ll enjoy these.

  12. Kelly Meding says:

    Oooh, I’m making people cuss in Swedish now! Yay!

    Ann-Catrin, I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed the book! Not everyone is going to appreciate the way it ends, but it will definitely make people talk. 🙂

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