Book Review: Equal Parts by Emma Winters, 4 Black Cats

I thought Equal Parts had a strong beginning. The voice of the main character, Felicity, immediately drew me into the story, no prologues, no long passages explaining the character’s history or the history of the world, the reader starts right in the spot where the world changes for the main character, the part when she meets the city’s villain, Achilles. Immediately the reader knows the destiny of these two are intertwined in some way. The reader is also introduced right off the bat to what type of story they are reading, a world full of people with superpowers. The writing is also clean and real sounding, not all flowery to the point the first person character no longer sounds like a real person, but a writer trying too hard. I knew immediately that I would pick this book to review.

As I continued reading, I found there was a nice balance between action, narrative summary, and dialogue. I never encountered talking heads with no movement or description, or sections of character thought or unnecessary description that went on forever and ever. Just enough action was thrown in to keep the scenes where Felicity spends a lot of time locked up from being boring.

There were times where I questioned whether the character’s reactions were realistic. There is a scene where Felicity does something quite violent. She isn’t a violent person. She’s a very sad but normal nineteen year old girl who happens to have a super power in a world where superpowers are normal. It seemed to me that the choice she made in the restaurant would have had more of an effect on her, but after it happens, it’s never really mentioned again like the action was nothing to her. And the way Achilles changes at the end. I think the change was too much too fast. Maybe it’s Felicity’s sunshine power effecting him? I don’t know, maybe that’s what the next books in the series will be about. I kept thinking along the way that it would be revealed that Achilles isn’t really a bad guy, more a good guy in disguise as a bad guy, like batman or Robin hood, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

I would have also preferred a stronger good guy super hero. Finn was too whiny and not a real challenge for Achilles. No wonder the town is full of crime. No super villain would see Finn as a real threat.

I would have liked more development in how the whole super hero aspect effected and changed this world compared to our normal world. I guess I would have liked to know the rules of the world more. Enough was explained in this first book to get by but the next books will need to explore it more.

One small thing that disturbed me is Felicity falling for a guy who kills people. She has a serious case of Stockholm syndrome or something. I understand meeting a bad boy type and feeling an instant attraction and connection, but this is beyond bad boy. He’s a killer. Perhaps Felicity is meant to come across as a kind of Bonnie and Clyde situation, which would explain the restaurant scene, but her inner thoughts don’t jibe with that theory. So I’m left a little confused, but not so much I’d stop reading. It’s written well enough I can ignore this problem. I also found it disturbing that Felicity’s friend would help her get back to Achilles considering his reputation. It seems to me a normal reaction would be to get her friend help and keep her away, not deliver her on a silver platter.

I am happy to say that this book has a complete arc and conclusion but leaves enough open for lots of future books to be written in this world. So many new writers are not concluding their first books. Because this one does, I’ll be willing and eager to read more books in this series because I know this author can end something satisfyingly.

Mostly I enjoyed this book. I think it might have worked better if it had been taken somewhere a little darker, where Felicity becomes a murdering criminal as well, or that Achilles turned out not to be the bad guy he was rumored to be. With the main character being such a nice person who helps others and Achilles is an actual violent person, I don’t know if I believe these two could have fallen for each other. I still recommend this book if you can let go of this small problem.

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