Thursday, October 16, 2014

Chasing Power by Sarah Beth Durst {review}

Chasing Power
by Sarah Beth Durst
♦publisher: Bloomsbury USA
♦release date: October 14th, 2014
♦hardcover, 376 pages
♦intended audience: Young adult
♦source: from publisher for honest review
Sixteen-year-old Kayla was born with the ability to move things with her mind-things like credit cards and buttons on cash registers-and she has become a master shoplifter. She steals to build up enough money for her and her mom to be able to flee if her dad finds them again . . . which would mean grave danger for them both.

When she's caught stealing by a boy named Daniel-a boy with the ability to teleport-he needs her help and is willing to blackmail her to get it. Together, they embark on a quest to find and steal an ancient incantation, written on three indestructible stones and hidden millennia ago, all to rescue Daniel's kidnapped mother. But Kayla has no idea that this rescue mission will lead back to her own family-and to betrayals that she may not be able to forgive . . . or survive.

Review: Chasing Power was a great adventurous story, possibly my favorite from Sarah Beth Durst yet! Kayla whole life has become about hiding; she hides her powers of telekinesis from the world, she hides the fact that she secretly uses those powers from her mother, and most importantly she hides from her estranged father who murdered her sister.  In true angsty fashion, she takes out her frustration about living like this by using her powers to pull off small-time jewelry heists and ATM robberies. At first the details of how she pulled things off without anyone seeing was a little far-fetched, specifically when items are moving about in very public places with no one noticing but I let my disbelief suspend a bit in the name of a fantastic story. 

One day she is approached by Daniel, a guy with plenty of power of his own, but he needs her specific skill to help track down his kidnapped mother---so much that’s he’s willing to blackmail Kayla into helping him. She, of course, does not take kindly to being manipulated, so starts their very rocky relationship.  I liked Daniel’s character a lot, a scared guy trying to act tough but slowly you see his vulnerability come through. And as far as supernatural powers go, being able to teleport to any place he’s been or seen would be amazing! Their quest takes them to New Orleans to confer with a VooDoo queen and then on to so many far-off exotic places,  a thrill for Kayla who thought she would never leave their tiny home in Santa Barbara. 

The story races along, one plot-propelling scene from the next, while still allowing time to let us see into the hearts of these characters as their feelings toward each other shift and change and how their emotional struggles with their prospective families reveal themselves.  She also has a great best friend, Serena, incredibly smart, huge fun personality, super resourceful, many facets of her own that rounded out the story and Kayla’s character. Kayla’s mother is a big part of the story as well, a woman who has grown accustomed to running and living in fear, raising her daughter to do the same because it’s the only way she can conceive to keep her safe. 

The danger builds and many secrets and hidden pasts are revealed as they chase clues around the world, trying to stay one step ahead of their pursuers. Lots of twists and head-spinning surprises kept me turning page after page until the very end. 

Visit Sarah Beth Durst: Website  •  Twitter  •  Facebook
Purchase Conjured:  •  BookDepository  •  Indiebound 


  1. Chasing Power sounds like such an amazing book! I've yet to read a book from Sarah, but if I don't get to Conjured first (currently sitting on my shelf) I'll definitely get to Chasing Power first. It just sounds too amazing to pass up! I just hope I can get a copy soon! As always, your thoughts are amazing and I'm glad you shared it with us readers :D

  2. I'm not sure if this book is for me, but ohh, I'm glad you enjoyed it so much :D Amazing review Becky. <3 I do like the look of the cover, hih. Fun and fast books are pretty awesome :)

  3. I hope you decide to give it try, Carina! It's really a fun adventurous read!!

  4. Read both!! :D I loved Conjured, such a bizarre story and a wild twist. This writer never ceases to amaze me with her creativity.

  5. OOH. I keep forgetting about this book! I've read the synopsis and gotten excited for it over and over again. I've not read one of Sarah Beth Durst's books either, but I neeeed this one. (Squee at New Orleans! I'm such a sucker for books that go to Nola, even just briefly!)

  6. I'm surprised that I haven't heard of this book before. It sounds like something I would love! I love fast-paced page turners with plenty of mysteries, and the premise sounds really intriguing.