Title: Who is Mackie Spence?
Author: Lin Kaymer
Publisher: Merit Press
Publication Date: January 2, 2015
Source: I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review
A love story about a girl who comes back from a near-death experience with powers no one can explain
With a strong, appealing boy narrator, Who Is Mackie Spence? is a story no boy would be ashamed to read and no girl would want to miss
This ecological and mythological story is spiced with everyday questions of young love: if someone you care about has a destiny beyond your town-even beyond your world-do you give her up?
Jeremy has known Mackie Spence all their lives, growing up together on a small island in the Atlantic. But after a near-drowning accident, Mackie is changed. She's different, and if no one else can see it, Jeremy can. But maybe he's only looking through the eyes of love, as his feelings for Mackie have gone way beyond childhood friendship. She's even more beautiful, but it's as though she has a new soul . . . or something. Jeremy can't explain it; he's a jock, a real-world kind of guy. Then things start happening that he couldn't explain even if he could find the words. One night, at the local nature rehab center where Jeremy and Mackie volunteer, Jeremy sees with his own eyes how terrified, dangerous, injured birds of prey grow calm in Mackie's presence. It's as if they know her. She doesn't understand or even seem to notice. Without being some kind of stalker creep, Jeremy makes it his job to grow more protective of Mackie, and sees her with wild otters and other creatures in situations that are beyond belief. And finally, something happens that not only changes Jeremy's future, but the way he will see life, forever.
Unfortunately, Who is Mackie Spence didn't really work for me. I had a lot of trouble connecting with the narrator Jeremy and I wish there was more mythology and fewer hormones.
I want to start with what I did like. I'm a big fan of mythology, especially Greek, and I think the mythology featured in this book definitely had potential to make an interesting story. However, the mythology ended up being a tiny portion of the book, which was disappointing for me.
I just didn't really connect with the narrator Jeremy. He was either just telling the reader about his general day-to-day life or dealing with his teenage boy hormones whenever he thought about Mackie. I also didn't find his voice very realistic for a teenage boy. First, he would often say random scientific facts, as if the author was trying to trick the reader into learning some biology. Second, I don't think any 17 year old boy would actually say "stinkeroo" if something was smelly.
Overall, the book felt pretty flat. Even in the parts I knew should have been exciting, I just didn't feel any excitement or tension. Overall, no really a fan of this one, which is disappointing, as I thought the mythology aspect had potential, but was terribly underdeveloped.
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