Friday, April 12, 2013

review: levitating las vegas by jennifer echols

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Jennifer Echols’s foray into the New Adult genre proved a disappointment. Levitating Las Vegas revolves around recent college graduate Holly and the others who work for a Las Vegas casino. Holly’s father is a magician who Holly and her mother assist during performances. Holly really wants to be let in on her father’s secrets for the act, but he refuses just as he and Holly’s mother refuse to let her do much of anything. They wouldn’t let her date a boy named Ethan in high school and now they won’t even let her live alone. Holly accepts this because she’s been told she’s mentally ill, but there’s a different reason for the overprotectiveness—Holly, Ethan, and many others in Las Vegas have special powers. So when an outside group escalates their ongoing threats, Holly and Ethan are unwittingly forced into action.

A number of issues kept me from enjoying Levitating Las Vegas as I’ve enjoyed previous books by Echols. I never connected with any of the characters, Holly in particular. She came across as weak (why did she never research her own “illness”?) and very self-involved (at the most ridiculous times she was concerned about her appearance). Additionally, there was never an explanation regarding why Holly’s parents and the other adults in Las Vegas drugged the kids so they wouldn’t know about their special abilities despite Holly and Ethan each having someone explain it all to them (yes, the excruciating explanations actually came separately and back-to-back). The rivalry between the casino group and “the Rez” (the outsiders that threatened the casino and possess special powers as well) was also unclear as no explanation for the animosity or the sudden escalation was ever provided.
Review copy provided by the publisher, Pocket Star.

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