The power to "Push" can alter reality. This ability makes seventeen-year-old Kaylin a high-value target. Thirty years after greed and corruption tore American society apart; relentless sector groups recruit powerful youths, often by force, to mold the populace to expand their reach. Kaylin has been on the run, hiding her untapped abilities for six years, but rescuing a mysterious young man risks exposing the depths of her power. Life has never been easy, but fighting back is even harder. This harsh, new world will no longer allow her to remain hidden.
Influence (Influence Series Book 1)Featured
On the run since her powers surged to the fore, Kaylin has been forced to stay hidden to avoid capture by those who will use her ability to Push for evil. When she and her best friend, Amanda, stop to help a dying man, little do they know their actions will change their lives forever.
Kaylin is an enjoyable character. Despite her circumstances, she possesses an inner strength and kindness which is endearing. The exploration of her powers is a high point as well as her journey to unlocking her full potential. The bond she shares with her best friend, Amanda—who is her opposite in many ways—is another favorite aspect.
The United States is gone and in its place is a harsher world. Corrupt societies exist, and life outside of these societies is tough and filled with dangerous people and not much food.
I enjoyed the concept of the different organizations and areas; Lost Souls sector and the Magnus Order—as well as the other hideouts and compounds. They display great creativity and are unique to other dystopian worlds in the genre. I did struggle with the spatial awareness of where these where in relation to one another, and sometimes with the layout within each area.
Overall, we get a sense of a cruel world where stakes are high, and the word ‘childhood’ no longer means the same thing.
Bernstein’s style is easy to read. We receive a vivid picture of each character’s personality and of the good vs. evil storyline. The flow of dialogue improves and the pace quickens from the halfway point. Initially, the amount of exposition did slow the plot, but in later chapters we are grateful for this information.
A good start to a promising series, suitable for twelve years and up.
“It’s not like being seventeen is that young, considering how messed up the world has become.”