Pub. Date: February 28th 2012
Readership: Young adult
Genres: fantasy, greek mythology
Source: Jessica Therrien!
Elyse knows what it means to keep a secret. She's been keeping secrets her whole life. Two, actually. First, that she ages five times slower than the average person, so that while she looks eighteen years old, she's closer to eighty. Second, that her blood has a mysterious power to heal. For Elyse, these things don't make her special. They make life dangerous. After the death of her parents, she's been careful to keep her secret as closely guarded as possible. Now, only one other person in the world knows about her age and ability. Or so she thinks. Elyse is not the only one keeping secrets. There are others like her all over the world, descendants of the very people the Greeks considered gods. She is one of them, and they have been waiting for her for a long time. Among so many of her kind, she should not be very remarkable--except for the prophecy. Some believe she will put an end to traditions, safeguarded by violence, which have oppressed her people for centuries. Others are determined to keep her from doing just that. But for Elyse, the game is just beginning--and she's not entirely willing to play by their rules.
I first stumbled upon Oppression on Goodreads and I thought hallelujah! More Greek mythology on the YA scene! I've had an infatuation with it since I was a kid. I bought all the books (well ok, borrowed from the library) on the Gods and Goddesses that I could find. Remember those kids books? The ones with the big, pretty pictures and blurbs of text? I loved learning about the different Gods and Goddesses and what they did. Artemis and Nyx were my favorites. I knew I had to get my hands on this book.
Immediately, I connected with Elyse. Sometimes I had to go girl, are you me? I've always felt a like a loner, an outsider, and yeah I had my first kiss pretty late down the line too. Elyse led a sheltered life, she only had one friend growing up but she's a feisty one. She has spunk coming out of her pores. She stands up for what she believes in. She's my kind of girl. Then there's William. W o w. The boy is adorable, first of all. We all need a guy like William. He's kind and he's caring. He's the guy every girl deserves to have. He loves Elyse so much all he wants to do is protect her. While Elyse fell for William rather fast, and things became serious fast too, I think it fit. I'm a believer in love at first sight and William knew who she was long ago. He was waiting for her and I think Elyse connected with that. Their relationship took off from there. It was fate. Literally! He's a good guy with a good heart. Dang it I want my own William!
And what a great supporting cast! I felt like I was hanging out with people I knew while I was reading their shenanigans. They bickered and they fought but they made up only to bicker again. They're a very endearing bunch. Then there's Anna, who I was rooting for the whole way through. My heart broken when we found out... something (no spoilers!) so I'm glad of the outcome.
Then there's the rich mythology Therrien created. The world of Oppression is phenomenal. There's the slow aging, the fact that the Gods and Goddesses weren't really Gods or Goddesses at all, but "Descendants". Each has powers that they get from their bloodlines. For example, if someone is the descendant of Aphrodite, they have the power of persuasion; to make someone do anything they want. Jump off a bridge, fall in love with them, shoot someone in the face. I wish there had been more powers and bloodlines to learn about but I'm sure they're coming in book two. Honestly, I wish I was a Descendant. How cool it would be, right?
Oppression is the perfect blend of action, romance, fate, and general awesomeness. Everyone should pick up a copy! Links below. (The e-copy is only 99cents!)