Echo - Alyson Noel

The series is a little light and frothy, but I look forward to that amongst some of my heavier reads. It may even been a good palate cleaner between some more intense or gut wrenching books. When in the mood for something a little light, there are some specific things that I really enjoy about this series that I talked about before but bear reiterating.

This is a YA with adults who know a little something and have a plan. Daire's grandmother is her mentor through the her magical training and always knows more than she does about what's going on. Daire's mother knows what teenagers are like and the shenanigans they tend to get into. She's never surprised, just hoping that her daughter uses protection, both for her heart and against pregnancy. These are wise adults that know they are meant to guide Daire on her journey rather than eclipse it because their time has come and past and they are purposefully passing the torch.

Dace has similar people in his life and so does Cade. Well, people that are trying with the more stubborn Cade, but that's not the point. The point is that adults are not treated like after thoughts. That may or may not be the norm for YA, but I appreciate every time there is a hero-mentor trajectory and that there will be people who will surprise our protagonists of any age with some greater wisdom. It's a thing that I like and it shows up here.

Also, the world building is pretty good. It makes sense within it's own world and it's consistent. I feel a little like shouting at the protagonist and her friends sometimes because of the way the world is consistent and they seem to be missing things. It can be fun, especially when those things are revealed to the reader in ways that make it so that we know but not them. I also love the feeling that I don't know everything about the world and that there's so much more about to go down in this series.

The romance is over-the-top but in an entertaining and consenting way. I'm not sure how intentional it was for the author but there is some great consent going on with our couples and some very specific acknowledgement of what's going on when there isn't consent. No beating around the bush here, just calling it assault and/or rape when it is.

Looking at just this book, it was a nice read that held my interest but didn't make me want to drop everything just to finish. The narration was done by the same person as before, Brittany Pressley, who does a fantastic job with it. She had some extra work to do with this book, narrating from points of view of both Daire and Dace throughout the book. I'll be interested to see if they add a third in the third book.