Book Review: Skulk by Rosie Best

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Skulk by Rosie Best
(Started: September 10, 2013; Finished: September 19, 2013)

When Meg witnesses the dying moments of a shapeshifting fox and is given a beautiful and powerful stone, her life changes forever. She is plunged into the dark world of the Skulk, a group of shapeshifting foxes. 
As she learns about the other groups of shapeshifters that lurk around London – the Rabble, the Horde, the Cluster and the Conspiracy – she becomes aware of a deadly threat against all the shapeshifters. They must put aside all their enmity and hostility and fight together to defeat it. (From Goodreads)
Review: 5 stars
Publication Date: October 01, 2013
Source: Strange Chemistry
Shelf: Goodreads, Shelfari
Available on: Amazon
Strange Chemistry has been really good to me. Thank God for them. They've released some of the great YA books this year (in my opinion), including Skulk. It is one of the most interesting and engaging story I've read this year so far. Skulk is not your paranormal shapeshifting novel. The idea of using animals that are not often used for shapeshifting is refreshing. It was also impeccably written that it didn't take long to draw me in to the story. The events in the book was so vivid that again, I felt like I was watching a film in my head or reliving a memory in my own pensieve. I cringed and closed the book when there was blood and violence. I was teary-eyed and sad when there was death. I blushed when something sweet occurred. The writing was so transparent and so humane. The author was not selfish to hold back some emotions or events that I was completely satisfied from start to finish. It was so raw and so intense most of the time like it was always in the climactic part that I thought it wouldn't end. With this said, I like how this book made me feel human, how I was in touch with my emotions and I thank Rosie Best for that. I can't even stop myself from telling my sister and some friends how good it was and narrated some of its most unforgettable parts to them.

With the plot, Skulk discussed some socio-political issues that were undercurrent but present in the story, and basically revolve on the idea of hope and cooperation. It's not about the usual YA stories that focuses on teen angst and rebellion or even instant love (or insta-love, as they call it nowadays). I think it was inspiring because it tells the readers that we can always compromise and work together if we set aside our pride and our differences. I also like to point out the keys to achieve this, which are listening and understanding that the characters were able to realize towards the end of the story.

Moving on to the characters, their description was so distinct that made them so remarkable and alive in my imagination. I also like the fact that the characters were so diverse that the author included people from all walks of life, ethnicity and religion. This made it even more relatable and realistic because we interact with various kinds of people everyday. The character development was also so evident that you can see their changes and progress. Putting the spotlight on the protagonist (which she deserves by the way), Meg is such a likeable character. She's not stubborn or impulsive as some of the other female leads in other novels. She's persistent, brave and never gives up easily no matter how tough the situation gets. She's inspiring and empowering to those who have the same familial issues. I think I never read that she whined about something throughout the book. She would just cry but after that she'll face her problems with new found courage and determination. She would take charge whenever necessary. In short, Meg's no damsel-in-distress or no show-off warrior either.

Overall, Skulk is a great balance of action, scary and violent situations, unity and a hint of love. I'm definitely looking forward to the sequel. This is a highly recommended young adult read with great twists, depth, and interesting world and characters that not only teens would enjoy but also adults.

For the quotes I got this from the book, please visit my Tumblr:

Happy Reading Everyone!

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