Author: Emma Raveling
My rating: 4 hearts
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
Pub. date: September 16th 2011
Publisher: Mandorla Publishing
Synopsis: Outspoken and independent, Kendra Irisavie has always played by her own rules.
She's an ondine, a water elemental gifted with the powerful magic of Empath Virtue and trained to be a fighter. Pursued by Aquidae demons, she and her mother remain Rogue, hiding among humans to avoid becoming casualties in an ancient war.
Everything changes when violence erupts on Kendra's seventeenth birthday. A dark stranger appears, promising answers to her mysterious past and stirring unexpected feelings in her fiercely guarded heart.
But as Kendra uncovers the truth about her heritage and future, she realizes just how deep the lies and deception run.
Now, in the face of unthinkable odds, she will need all her wits, skills, and magic to fulfill an extraordinary prophecy.
The first in a sweeping urban fantasy series, Whirl is the beginning of a young woman's exhilarating journey for survival, love, and hope as she fights for her place in a world where she doesn't belong. (synopsis from Goodreads)
It really didn’t take long for me to fall in love with this world, or with Kendra. Kendra is an amazing kick-ass heroine that is so much fun to read about, and the world was unique and fun to get to know. I really enjoyed it!
Kendra is an amazing heroine; bad-ass, independent and willing to fight for what she believes in.
The book starts with her going to Lumiére, the school for ondines where she has to attend. (And yes, the accent mark is wrong on purpose). This school is pretty old-school, doesn’t let ondines fight, because of their magic, and the selkies and demillirs are supposed to protect them. Kendra is so not okay with that. She was raised differently and refuses to let anyone else protect her. She wants to be able to defend herself, and she has to fight to even get to practise fighting. She’s also really protective of the people she cares about, although she is afraid of being too close to someone. Her mother taught her that love was a weakness, so she tries not to care about others, but she does, and she’s willing to do anything to protect those she cares about.
But, she has flaws. Like the whole thing about not wanting to care about people. Often, she does things without thinking it through, and she can be a little reckless. But I loved seeing how she worked with her problems, how she grew throughout the book. That’s what made her such an amazing character.
Tristan and Julian.
I’m not going to talk about them a lot, because I haven’t really decided about them yet. There is a love triangle, and usually I don’t like those, but the focus is more on the plot and on Kendra, so it works. There is obviously chemistry with both, and I liked how the author wrote about it. Not love at first sight, thankfully. And she’s not really in love with both of them, either.
The plot was a bit slow, but enjoyable.
It took a while for things to start happening, and it was a bit hard to get into it, but I still really liked it. But what I really loved was the world. It was so much fun to read about something new, to read about creatures that you don’t see a lot of in YA literature. And Raveling’s created such an amazing world, with the ondines and selkies and everything. I can’t wait to learn more!