Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: October 9, 2012
Source: Netgalley via publisher*
Rating: 4/5 stars
Get it: Amazon | B&N
Aria Rose, youngest scion of one of Mystic City's two ruling rival families, finds herself betrothed to Thomas Foster, the son of her parents' sworn enemies. The union of the two will end the generations-long political feud—and unite all those living in the Aeries, the privileged upper reaches of the city, against the banished mystics who dwell below in the Depths.
But Aria doesn't remember falling in love with Thomas; in fact, she wakes one day with huge gaps in her memory. And she can't conceive why her parents would have agreed to unite with the Fosters in the first place.
Only when Aria meets Hunter, a gorgeous rebel mystic from the Depths, does she start to have glimmers of recollection—and to understand that he holds the key to unlocking her past. The choices she makes can save or doom the city—including herself.
With a more than stunning cover, I had high hopes for Mystic City. What I thought to be one thing, turned out to another in the best way imaginable. A simple forbidden romance was all I was expecting, but I got so much more from Mystic City. This book had that unwavering love I was looking for but it also had revolution, magic, and power struggles that made this book gripping, exciting, and enthralling.
I loved main character and heroine, Aria Rose. In the circumstance of losing some of her memory, she never gives up even in the slightest doubt. Groomed, trained and fit to be a political darling and perfect daughter to Johnny Rose, Aria feels as if she always has to prove her devotion and loyalty to her family. In Mystic City we see how truly conflicted Aria feels. Courageous and willful girl that she is, Aria doesn’t judge and doesn’t quite agree with her family and with this difficulty leads her to open her eyes and see everything in a whole different light. The way in which she discovers new things about the mystics and the city is something of curiosity and adoration that made me believe and see something more in Aria. She was brave and determined to find out the truth throughout the book. Despite her conflicts, Aria stands up for what she believed was right. She was stronger, wiser, and much more compassionate and kind-hearted than her family. A rebel at heart, Aria rises from under the restraints of her family, pushes to be her own person and is determined to make new of the city she holds dearly.
The romance between Aria and Hunter that quickly develops in a short period of time is very reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet, only in a more modern and advance world. While their love may have been fast, it did not feel forced nor rushed. Their love had much more than at first glance and I really got to see and feel the truth and realness of their feelings through their interactions and their wish for the safety and well being of the other. Hunter, albeit powerful and dangerous as a mystic was kind and had a fun side. He brought in some of the humor I needed when the book got really serious. He was everything Aria described him to be: otherworldly, sexy, strong and sweet. Hunter was an amazing character for many reasons, but mostly because he helped open Aria’s eyes about the mystics and he loved her unconditionally.
Aeries, the Depths, the Magnificent Block with their TouchMe screens, e-coulmns, lightrails, PODs, and the Grid are all a part of this rich and limitless world created by Theo Lawrence. In this futuristic setting of New York, the west side and east side are separated and ruled by the feuding and sworn enemies of the Rose and the Foster family respectively. The enemy of their enemy are the mystics, those with special powers that enhance speed and strength that are known to be a danger and menace to those living in Aeries and the Depths. In Mystic City, there is a combination of political families joining together to gain political power and control and of an uprising and a revolution brimming among the mystic rebels wanting the equality they deserved for many years. That coupled with the romance between Aria and Hunter, made Mystic City one hell of a fast-paced and invigorating novel. The whole book was one complete big rush of exhilaration that consumed me. Lawrence made me want to scream and shout and pull my hair out in frustration and in anticipation. I loved the writing and descriptions used to envision this part of New York. Lawrence really does a great job of bringing the futuristic, dilapidated, dark and mysteriousness state of this world to life. I had no trouble imagining and seeing it all in my mind.
Overall, Mystic City was a novel full of rebellion, love, desperation and urgency I felt, read, and saw from the start. Dystopian fans will love this world and romance fans will be rooting for Aria and Hunter all the way.
*Thanks to Random House for sending a copy for review purposes
I was not compensated for my opinion.