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radiantshadows

Radiant Shadows

Struck

Struck - Jennifer Bosworth Struck has to be the most original apocalyptic - no, scratch that - one of the most original novels I have ever read. I love Bosworth's vision of a future Los Angeles in turmoil, and the idea of a person being able to survive being struck by lightning multiple times. But predictable plots twists and the withholding of information to create suspense had me struggling to get through this with my original intrigue intact.I found Mia to be an ok protagonist. I admired her determination to keep her family safe and together, even though they didn't always make it easy for her.I should have been the glue holding us together, but apparently I wasn't sticky enough.I was desperate to learn about lightning's power over her, and how she was able to be struck without it causing her extreme harm (if not death), so I was disappointed when a clear explanation was never truly given. She often made the stupid decision, which inevitably got her in to some sort of trouble, and by the end I was almost hoping that Jeremy's visions of her martyrdom would come true. It seemed like a lot of what happens in Struck could have been avoided if Mia had taken the time to actually communicate with those around her, instead of keeping people in the dark or refusing to ask the questions that needed to be asked.I didn't believe in Mia's relationship with Jeremy. Putting aside my issues with Bosworth romanticizing Jeremy's stalking, there was just no development. Mia constantly puts her focus on how striking Jeremy is, and how her body reacts to his when they touch. She even goes so far as to use kisses to be able to share in his visions - instead of kissing him because she felt something for him.I found the two cults fascinating and learning more about them made for some of my favourite parts of Struck. Faced with the choice of becoming one of Prophet's Followers by joining the Church of Light or joining the Seekers in their effort to thwart the Church of Light and it's "false prophet", Mia chooses to join neither. I understood why she was hesitant to trust Prophet, but I don't feel like she gave the Seekers enough time to explain themselves and their mission before dismissing them as well. It also prevented her from learning about her ability and how to control the Spark inside of her. Prophet was written fantastically and I found myself drawn to his presence. His ability to control his Followers and have them follow his word blindly was eerie and I kept wondering if that was an intentional comment on religion in general. I didn't understand the motives of the Seekers, and again I was disappointed with the lack of explanation.I've seen other people comment on the amount of religious references in Struck - mainly the End of Days mentioned in the Bible (The Sixth Seal, the Horsemen of the Apocalypse, the righteous being saved) - but it didn't bother me. I didn't find myself being preached to, as Mia was constantly doubting anything Prophet said. I actually found it all kind of interesting, because it was presented in a way that wasn't forcing me to believe anything, to pick a side.All in all, I enjoyed Struck. I loved the dynamic Bosworth created between Mia and her family, the pacing was spot on and the plot was unique and refreshing - I don't even know what I would compare it to! I'm definitely interested to see what this debut author comes up with next!Find this review, and more, on my blog: Radiant Shadows