Title – Author: Outcast – Adrienne Kress
Publisher: Diversion Books
Release Date: June 4, 2013
Format – Source: e-ARC – Publisher via NetGalley
For the past six years, “angels” have come on the same night to sixteen-year-old Riley Carver’s small Southern town and taken people. After her best friend Chris is taken, Riley has had enough of these angels. When one shows up in her backyard, she shoots it in the face. But instead of a dead angel lying on the ground, there’s a naked teenager named Gabe. Riley ties him up, thinking she finally has a chance to learn what really happened to Chris. But Gabe doesn’t know anything about angels…and he thinks it’s 1956. As Riley and Gabe learn more about what these angels really are, and about where Gabe came from, they decide to do something to save the town.
Having just read an angel series (Unearthly), I expected a lot of similarities. That was definitely not the case with Outcast. Kress’s world and angel mythology are unique and completely engrossing. I’ve never read a story quite like this one.
Riley is the best kind of heroine. She’s honest, a bit awkward, uncomfortable in her skin, and always speaks her mind. She’s also brave and selfless. I liked how she has insecurities like any other teenage girl, but she doesn’t let those insecurities define her. The best part about her, though, is that she sees something wrong and actually does something about it. She’s a girl of action, and she’s not about to blindly follow the crowd.
The romance between Riley and Gabe was sweet and developed in just the way I like. They start off mistrusting each other but still with an undeniable attraction. Then they become friends first before taking it to the next level. Gabe is amusing and charming and knows just when to say the right thing.
The ending is what really made this book stand out to me. It’s not your typical YA ending and is a bit daring. It’s not the ending I wanted or expected, but it’s the right ending. It’s an incredible and heartbreaking sacrifice that really shows the depth of these characters.
Outcast is not your typical angel book. Though the writing wasn’t as strong as I’d have liked, I still enjoyed it and look forward to more from this author.