Teyla Branton’s The Change is book one of The Unbounded series, a fresh take on paranormal adventure. The series currently comprising four volumes, the most recent publishing earlier this summer (2014). As the introduction to the extended tale, The Change provides ample character development while establishing the foundation and associated conflicts for everything that is to come in the battle between three factions: the mortal Hunters and the two sides of nearly godlike Unbounded, the Emporium and the Renegades. Branton provides a historical basis for the conflict creating enough plausibility for the reader to suspend disbelief, a critical part of paranormal storytelling.
Branton’s writing style makes for a comfortable read providing enough variation to remain fresh and compelling as she employs first person to convey the story through the eyes as well as other senses of Erin. Barely surviving a horrendous traffic accident in which she was severely burned over seventy percent of her body, Erin learns that she possesses a gene that allows her not only to survive but also to be better than she was before as her body now replicates and repairs itself quickly.
Although near immortality at first it might seem a dream come true, the reality of her new situation casts Erin into the midst of a centuries-old battle. If that wasn’t bad enough, the Hunters that would like nothing better than rid the world of all Unbounded. In the process of self-discovery Erin is compelled to choose which side she will join. She learns that nothing about her life is easy or even what it seems including her ancestry and that her gifts that are rare even amongst the Unbounded.
The Change is full of suspense, action and intrigue with several twists and turns as the reader constantly learns more about the surreal world that exists beneath the unsuspecting noses of most mortals. With attention held from start to finish the reader reaches a conclusion that serves more as a respite than resolution. There is a good deal left to be resolved in the subsequent installments.
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