Recently I saw a review or a blurb for the October release, Intimate Beings by Jessica Inclan and I was intrigued enough that I made a note of it. When I saw that IB is the second in a trilogy, I knew I’d have to read #1 first, which is Being with Him. I finished it over the weekend and really enjoyed it. Here’s the blurb from BWH:
They are here among us...
Far from home, gifted with special abilities, hunted for their powers. And they are desperate to find their other, the one who completes them...before it's too late...
Sometimes, Time Really Does Stand Still
Mila Adams has always known she was different. For as long as she can remember, she has had the ability to shift time, and who would believe that? Certainly not the obnoxious blind dates her mother keeps foisting off on her. But Mila can't help feeling there's someone out there for her, a soul mate who might understand her unique ability. And when she looks into the dark eyes of financial whiz Garrick McClellan, she can't but feel her time has finally come.
Any man would lust after a beauty like Mila, but the moment Garrick touches her--feels her shifting time just as he can--he recognizes her as his partner in power. Their connection is immediate, passionate, raw, and beyond anything either has ever experienced. But who are they? What is this gift that joins them so intensely? Are there others like them? And why do they feel that time is running out?
That line at the top, “They are here among us…” ought to have clued me in, but I missed it, so when as I read this book, it turned into something I didn’t expect. And that was a good thing because sometimes it really is nice to be surprised by something a little different.
The backdrop for this trilogy is actually a bit of space opera, without all of the SF gizmo. The characters are all human beings who share the same DNA as us earthlings, but they evolved in somewhat different ways because they were born on different planets. A war between races caused children of one race to be “hidden” on other planets—dropped off to be raised in adoptive homes and saved from the other race that would exploit the children's paranormal powers. It’s an intriguing concept. Mila and Garrick were toddlers when they came to earth and their memories of their original homes are more like dreams to them. They discover their powers as they grow up. Mila keeps hers to herself; Garrick suffers when no one believes him about his. They feel isolated and alone and Ms. Inclan does a great job of helping us feel and believe in their isolation. When Mila and Garrick meet it’s explosive; they fill in one another’s missing piece. And when they begin to discover that they’re not who they thought they were, the loneliness and emptiness of their lives up to that point begins to make sense.
It turns out that where they are from, people are destined to pair up in this way. Words such as “twin” or “double” are used to describe the pairing, because pairs have complementary gifts. For example, Mila can shift her time to the future and Garrick can shift his to the past. Together, though, they can do both, and more. In the book Mila & Garrick end up meeting others like themselves, only with different gifts, such as telekinesis or teleportation. I like how Ms. Inclan took the idea of “destined pairs” and added to it a sense of equal partnership because each one has a gift that only becomes more powerful when it’s used in conjunction with the partner’s gift. There’s real equality in these relationships which made the romantic aspects of the book more meaningful.
Some of the book didn’t make as much sense to me, though. The parents do what they can to save their children by sending them off-world, yet they leave no clues that would help them understand who they are. I know that the children needed to be hidden, but I guess I expected more. In addition, they are aided by a mysterious character who is a traitor to his or her race. This character is only hinted at and it’s difficult to understand the motivation behind his or her aid. That makes certain events just a tad too convenient. The book also bogged down in a section toward the end when Garrick and Mila are temporarily stuck on another planet where they find more people like themselves. For me, this section got a little confusing. But these things were minor and I found myself pretty well glued to the book over the weekend. I’d definitely recommend it and I’m looking forward to reading #2, IB. They're both published in trade, so I borrowed these from my awesome public library. I assume there’s a #3, but Ms. Inclan’s web site doesn’t say how soon.