To be normal, sixteen-year-old Julia Parker would shed her empathic gift in a second. Life has been difficult since her mother's mysterious disappearance ten years earlier - an event she witnessed, but can't remember. Julia's situation becomes more complicated after a near death experience from a blood thirsty stalker. As high school students go missing it is clear there is a connection to her own experience--past and present. Someone has to stop the madness and a chance encounter with a creepy psychic foretells that only Julia is the key to stopping the madness, but it may require the life of the one she loves.
Saying this book tested my patience does not even begin to cover it; it truly exhausted every ounce of whatever patience there was in me. While I admit I was intrigued about its premise at first, and was thoroughly excited at having the book in my hands, eventually I had to get rid of it or risk insanity.
For the record, I actually did not finish the book. So whether or not you'd take my review as accurate, I'll leave it for you to decide. However, note that I did try to read as much of this book as I could possibly endure. But it just was not possible to finish the book.
The protagonist, Julia, narrates the story and this pretty much guaranteed it's downfall for me. She's a whiny character, one that comes across as stupid more than naive. She's also rather weak in character and I was especially put off with her incessant pining after Nicholas.
So the guy heroically saves her and she falls head over heels in love at first sight, granted. But when Nicholas fails to show up after his saving her, she acts as if her life has suddenly lost its purpose. She goes through the five stages of grief, as though she has lost a lover. She begins blaming him, acting as if Nicholas owed her a lengthy explanation for promising to show up and somehow failing to do so (sure, a promise is a promise - but when a stranger promised something to you, do you honestly fall into a depression when it's broken? Aren't you more likely to be surprised if that stranger actually fulfilled a promised visit?). She also actually gets into the point where she tells herself to finally 'move on' from Nicholas. Move on? As if they ever had a relationship in the first place? It was just too pathetic.
Of course a good mystery and even more mysterious hero is always welcomed in my book - but as I waited for the mystery to unravel, there was nothing else to sustain the plot other than Julia's never-ending pining for Nicholas. Not only did this lack of subplot resulted in the dragging of the storyline, it also made it boring, and Julia's narrative practically killed it for me. Being annoyed to death by this character overshadowed my reading experience so much I can hardly comment on the book's writing and structure.
So sadly, despite my initial enthusiasm, Emerald Talisman turned out to be rather unbearable.
* Book courtesy of UK Book Tours.