|REVIEW: The Repossession of Genie Magee
by Sam Hawksmoor
Now available on Kindle - May 2021
Evie Seo - Bookish Blog- Review - Canada - Review
Combining the elements of science fiction, mystery and supernatural, it is definitely one of the best, and most fascinating, debut novels I've ever read.
The Repossession of Genie Magee tells the story of Genie Magee, a teenage girl from Spurlake, BC, who - after predicting her grandmother's death - gets imprisoned in her bedroom by her mentally deranged mother and the wicked Reverend Schneider, who accuses Genie of being possessed by the devil. Haunted by weird visions, verbally and physically abused by the Church of Free Spirit devotees, Genie is confused, scared and desperate to escape. Thankfully, she has someone she can always count on. Rian, her beloved boyfriend, will do anything it takes to protect Genie and make her happy, even if it means ripping out the window with a rope attached to his best friend's car (Western-style - totally bad-ass, baby!) and leaving town for good.
This, however, is only the beginning of their many troubles and adventures. They're about to uncover the mystery behind the disappearances of 34 local kids, and its connection to the Fortress, an underground research station nearby that is secretly carrying out experiments with teleportation device. They will also learn the hard way that fighting a well-funded, powerful organization is border-line suicidal, even if you have special powers of your own and an adorable little pig for a sidekick.
This book is a perfect example why I love YA books written by male authors so much. They're simply fabulous. You just don't get this awesomeness anywhere else. The Repossession is so well-researched, and written with such remarkable care for details (especially when it comes to the scientific background), it is simply mind-blowing. Sam Hawksmoor not only managed to capture the unique, slightly eerie atmosphere of rural British Columbia, but he also did a great job depicting the inner workings of a small, secluded town, where everyone knows each other, people are very protective of their secrets and don't appreciate outsiders meddling in their business. My heart belongs to BC, and reading The Repossession made me feel all warm and fluffy inside, as, thanks to many nuances scattered throughout the book, I was able to travel in space and revisit all my favorite places (even Hastings Street is mentioned once! Although I wouldn't exactly call it a favorite place of mine).
Anyway you slice it, it's a great and enjoyable piece of literature that just works on so many levels. The science fiction elements are all believable and terrifyingly real. The love story between Genie and Rian is sweet and charming, their devotion and readiness to do anything it takes to protect each other - truly heart-warming. The pacing of the story is great, too. The tension builds up slowly but surely, leading to an action-packed, not-exactly-a-cliffhanger ending that is sure to send you clamoring for the next instalment The Hunting of Genie Magee . There's not a single thing I didn't enjoy about this book. The characters are wicked awesome, especially Rian, who is just the sweetest guy a girl could wish for. He's understanding, giving, warm, protective and funny. To Genie, he is a knight in a shining armor, someone she can trust, who will always be there to make sure nothing bad ever happens to her. I loved them as a couple. Their relationship seemed very natural and genuine. In that sense, they reminded me a lot of Todd and Viola from Chaos Walking Trilogy.
All in all The Repossession of Genie Magee is a must-read YA novel. Well written, rich in detail of both character and world building, it's a unique blend of many different genres - from science fiction, to mystery, thriller and supernatural, with elements of teen romance and drama. Smart, dark and graceful, this story is sure to send chills down your spine, make you ponder the events described in it, and wonder just how plausible they really are.
Read Chapter One here
Part Two: The Hunting of Genie Magee now available on Kindle May 1st 2021
*Read Part Three of the Genie Magee story The Heaviness