Sunday, December 23, 2012

Switched by Amanda Hocking


From Amazon: When Wendy Everly was six years old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. Eleven years later, Wendy discovers her mother might have been right.  She’s not the person she’s always believed herself to be, and her whole life begins to unravel—all because of Finn Holmes.
Finn is a mysterious guy who always seems to be watching her.  Every encounter leaves her deeply shaken…though it has more to do with her fierce attraction to him than she’d ever admit.  But it isn’t long before he reveals the truth:  Wendy is a changeling who was switched at birth—and he’s come to take her home.   
Now Wendy’s about to journey to a magical world she never knew existed, one that’s both beautiful and frightening.  And where she must leave her old life behind to discover who she’s meant to become…


From Wiki: The story begins with a prologue entitled "Eleven Years Ago", in which Wendy recounts her sixth birthday party. She expresses contempt at the gifts of fragile porcelain dolls she does not want. She throws a tantrum at seeing her mother has bought her a chocolate birthday cake, to which her mother asks what sort of child she is. Wendy's mother claims she is not her daughter, and attempts to take her life with the knife she had been using to cut the cake.
In the modern day, we see Wendy as a troubled young woman who struggles in school and has forced her brother, Matt, and aunt, Maggie, to uproot their lives and move away when she is expelled from school yet again. She soliloquises that she has a power of persuasion and thus demonstrates on a threatening teacher. She approaches the mysterious and fellow new-student Finn Holmes after class and asks why he always stares blankly at her.
Finn confirms her host mothers' beliefs of Wendy being a changeling, and tells her that she has to come back to Forening, the troll tribe in which she is from. She refuses until two trolls from an enemy tribe called the Vittra attack her. Finn comes in and saves her, taking her back to Forening .
There, Wendy meets her real mother, Elora, who informs her that she is actually the princess of the tribe, and is the highest rung of society. She meets Rhys and Rhiannon, both something the Trylle call "mänsklig".
Whilst wandering the halls of the Palace, Wendy breaks into a locked room stocked with many undisplayed photos. She recognizes in one of them a sad Elora with a male baby, then realizes one contains herself, wearing a white gown and an injured leg, an horrified expression on her face. Finn discovers her and tells her that Elora's Trylle power consists of precognition that she can only utilise through painting. Finn tells her of the societal rules of the Trylle; whilst the Princess, Queens and Marksinna (nobles) are the highest, the Trackers and mänsklig are considered even lower than the peasantry.
Finn reveals that Elora and his father had once had an affair, to which Wendy expresses disbelief that Elora could show an emotion other than anger.
Finn begins to tutor her in the history and etiquette of the Trylle so that Wendy can properly handle her future role as Queen and not embarrass Elora. He warns Wendy that she cannot become involved with Rhys past a platonic level as it would "corrupt" the bloodline of the royalty, and the strong powers held by the royals would cease to exist. Finn reveals that the mänsklig are the children taken in place of the changelings, that live with the family who swap the children, and Rhys is the mänsklig left in Wendy's place.
An introductory ball is scheduled to be held in Wendy's honour which Finn prepares her for. Elora tells Wendy that she will be choosing a more appropriate name for her Trylle life. Wendy says that she does not want to and will not, much to Elora's annoyance. Elora speaks with Finn and he resigns. Wendy finds him before he goes and the two share a kiss. Finn says that he cannot allow her to proceed.
The next night at Wendy's ball, the Vittra attack, forcing the Trylle that possess helpful powers to retaliate. Jen, the member who had previously injured Wendy when trying to kidnap her, rounds on her. Rhys attempts to help her escape but is knocked unconscious. Finn returns, almost losing his life to aid the princess. Tove, a young Markis, uses psychokinesis to save Finn's life and successfully get rid of Jen.
Elora and the Trylle inside the ballroom manage to quell the Vittra threat and the three return inside. Finn and Wendy reunite, until Elora informs Wendy that Finn has left, having been transferred once more. Wendy reacts angrily and uses her persuasive powers on Rhys to get him to drive her home to Matt and Maggie, his biological family.


Book Rating: ★★★
This book was alright. I felt that this book was easy to read and that the author is an amateur. It lacks that appeal that professional writers use in their books. I would recommend this book to teens because of the use of language and focus on romance.

Character List

From Wiki
Wendy: Narrator of the series. The Trylle "Princess". She lived with her brother (Matt) and Aunt Maggie after her mother, Kim, tried to kill her at the age of six. The first chapter starts the book eleven years later. Wendy was kicked out of countless schools for violence. At the start of the book she has just moved to a new town and new school. She promises that she is trying to do better and makes friends Patrick and Finn. She develops feeling for Finn, the newest boy to the school, who is constantly staring at her. He is the one who takes her away to the Trylle town, Forening. Her biological mother is the Trylle "Queen", Elora.
Matt: Wendy's older "host" brother. He named her when she was born as her mother wouldn't.
Finn: Wendy's tracker and bodyguard. She has feelings for him which he seems to return throughout the book.
Elora: Wendy's mother. Queen of the Trylle.
Willa: Wendy's friend in the Trylle town.
Tove: A Markis.
Kim: Matt's mother, put away in a mental institution because she tried to kill Wendy.
Rhys: Kim's real son, Matt's real brother. Taken in place of Wendy. Called a "Mänks".
Maggie: Matt's and Rhys' aunt. Wendy's "host" aunt.
Rhiannon: Like Rhys, a Mänks, but she is Willa's mänkslig.

For more details, visit the Amanda Hocking Blog.