I received a review copy as part of a blog tour for the first book in exchange for an honest review. It has not affected my opinions.
Genre: Contemporary Fantasy Age Range: YA Star Rating: 3 stars Series: yes - book 2 CW: drinking, family break up, car crash, attempted rape
Eric Horton has been having disturbing nightmares of explosions and fire and someone screaming. The dreams keep him up at night, but during the day, as a goalkeeper on his high school’s varsity soccer team, he has been unbeatable, saving shot after shot with what feels like a supernatural awareness of where the ball is headed.
He also shares an uncommonly strong connection with Renee, the attractive new French exchange student. The wild visions and synchronicities pale in comparison to the strange experiments Renee’s father is carrying out in the physics lab at the university, however. He has asked Eric to take part in the tests, which makes Eric question whether what he is seeing and hearing is reality or something far beyond it.
When his friend Will develops a drinking problem and Renee starts flirting with other guys, Eric loses his confidence on the soccer field and in himself. If he is going to pull it all together, he will have to tap into a part of himself that he never knew existed.
Synopsis taken from Goodreads. Add to your shelves here.
THE FIELD takes a while to become an urban fantasy, and I’d probably describe it overall as a contemporary with some sci-fi/fantasy elements.
For most of the book, Eric is worried primarily about footfall, his friends, and the girl he fancies (then how his relationship with her progresses). I am not a big fan of contemporaries and I am really not a fan of football (I’ve never got the point of it), which meant it was rather hard to engage with the character. There was nothing to connect me to him, and so his goals felt rather pointless.
Once the fantasy comes in, it’s very much a fantasy/sci-fi mix of psuedo-science. It was a little tricky to swallow it, as someone training to be a physicist, but once I got over that, I liked the way the power was then inserted into everyday life. The clean energy message was a tad heavy handed in my opinion, even as someone who whole-heartedly believes in it, and is looking to get into that industry after my degree.
The relationship with his friend Will was interesting, as I’ve rarely read books from teen boy’s perspective. It was also really nice to see a “jock” with a great family relationship. Most of my experience with jock characters comes from teen movies, and they rarely have great relationships. Maybe I’ve just been unlucky with the jock stories I’ve read/seen.
This all said, I quite enjoyed this book. It was well paced so it didn’t feel like it was dragging and I kept turning the pages despite it not being my usual cup of tea. From the plot threads, I would have thought the book would be lower rated, but there was something in the writing that made me invested. I’m actually quite eager to read the next installment, which hasn’t been happening with some tour books recently.