I have discovered very recently the genre labelled "New Adult" which had me stumped since I started blogging this year. I was totally confused thinking is this some kind of weird adult genre or is it another form of young adult, tween fiction? I had no fucking clue. Thanks to Wikipedia I have been enlightened - New Adult is a genre aimed specifically at 18-25 year olds. Which explains why I have suddenly found myself loving novels more mature than young adult, not as stuffy as adult novels and being unable to categorize them as either - BEHOLD THE NEW ADULT NOVEL! So why am I banging on about this right now? Because my dear readers, "Becoming Alpha" is a New Adult novel and I feel super fancy for being able to label it so! But enough of my la-dee-da nonsense - to the Bat-mobile! I mean review...Tessa McCaide has a unique talent for getting into trouble. Then again, it isn’t easy for a girl with visions to ignore what she sees. Luckily Tessa and her family are leaving California and moving halfway across the country, giving her the perfect opportunity to leave her reputation as “Freaky Tessa” behind.But Tessa doesn’t realize that kissing the wrong guy in her new Texas town could land her in far more trouble than she ever imagined. Like being forced to attend St. Ailbe’s Academy, a secret boarding school for werewolves.Even if the wrong guy did accidentally turn her into one of “them” and doom her to attending the weirdest high school ever, Tessa can’t help her growing attraction to the mysterious Dastien Laurent.When vampires attack St. Alibe’s and her visions pinpoint an enemy in their midst, Tessa realizes that boy drama and her new found canine tendencies might just be the least of her problems.
WERHOOOOO! I love love love love love this book! Another wonderful novel that is able to walk the fine line between youthful characters and mature writing. I was worried this would be another run of mill tween romance novel with a werewolf twist and if you're being an ass you could apply it to this novel - even though it isn't! There is a solid realness to the writing of Erin - a depth to her story and characters that has you hooked from page one. I could barely put the book down to go toilet I was THAT hooked. Tessa is the perfect leading lady with just enough sass and just enough insecurity. She isn't willing to suddenly accept werewolves as a sure thing even though she was slightly supernatural to begin with. She keeps her distance from Dastien because the freaky hot guy bit her and why the fuck would she want to get to know him after that?! Erin writes Tessa so well I had no difficulty becoming so ridiculously involved and concerned for Tessa's well-being I was giving stern glares and unnecessary quips to my Kobo.
Tessa's relationship with Dastien is also created beautifully. I can't tell you how sick I am of young characters suddenly falling in love for no better reason than chemisty, destiny or "we were meant to be together I could feel it" bollocks. Giving readers unrealistic expectations of love in real life by creating no basis or friendship for a romantic relationship beyond burning passion and a hunch. BAH! What I love about this book is that Erin establishes a connection between Tessa and Dastien without exaggerating it into an inexplicable bond. Erin creates the space for the characters to build a friendship, trust and find common interests in addition to being drawn together. I have always known the best character relationships are built through the book not decided in an instant and Aileen Erin gets it right on her first go.
This book is a wonderful shifter romance fiction for teens but also for the slightly older young adults like me. It has a great plot with wicked characters and an author that refuses to sacrifice maturity to create youthful writing ("omg, like totally" offenders I'm looking at you). If this series doesn't blow up to be awesome then I am going to personally shove it under the noses of anyone who looks like they would enjoy it. I can't wait for the next book in the series and Aileen Erin has firmly dug out a place among my favourite authors. Now go buy a copy because only good things can happen from here!
xxx Literary George
A HUGE thank you to NetGalley, Aileen Erin and Ink Monster LCC for the advanced copy.
P.S. Keep an eye out for this publishing company they have great authors putting out great books and the cutest logo ever!
YES on Amazon