• Title: Other (An Other Novel)
  • Author: Karen Kincy
  • Released: 2010-07-08
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 336
  • ISBN: 0738719196
  • ISBN13: 978-0738719191
  • ASIN: 0738719196
From School Library Journal Grade 9 Up This fresh take on a modern fantasy is set in Washington State. Shape-shifters, vampires, werewolves, and the like are called Others, and normal humans are well aware of their existence. Others are being murdered, and it seems that a serial killer may be on the prowl. Several deaths are too close for comfort for teenage half-pooka Gwen. She discovers a dead couple, both water sprites, and her friend, a Dryad, hanging from a tree in the forest. Gwen searches for answers, all the while unsure of whom to trust and what exactly it means to be Other. In another wrinkle, Gwen's boyfriend comes from an ultra-Christian family who feel that Others are an abomination. He doesn't know that Gwen is half-pooka until after they lose their virginity to one another. The emotional turmoil of the characters is evident and will appeal to readers who have felt misunderstood or as if they don't belong-teenagers. Genevieve Gallagher, Charlottesville High School, VA
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From Kincy's first novel is a standout blend of paranormal thriller and sweet teen romance. Gwen is half pooka (a Welsh shape-shifting spirit) in a slightly skewed modern world where Others—supernatural creatures—have gone public. In Gwen's backwoods Washington town, Others are met with suspicion, so her status as a “person with paranormal identity” is carefully hidden, even from her Christian boyfriend, Zach. When people in town—all closet Others, including her friend Chloe—start being murdered, Gwen knows a serial killer is on the loose. While simultaneously grieving and investigating her friend's death, Gwen meets Tavian, a sexy teenage kitsune (a fox-like being) who recently moved to town. Though Kincy includes a strong suspect pool, the identity of the killer will likely be obvious to mystery buffs; the reveal, nevertheless, is chilling. Gwen is extremely likable as the impulsive, conflicted heroine, and although Tavian is a bit perfect, their romance is a dynamic counterpoint to the suspenseful mystery. Parallels between Others and other marginalized groups—particularly homosexuals—are a bit pointed but provide a realistic frame of reference. Grades 9-12. --Krista Hutley

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