The Shifter (Healing Wars#1) By Janice Hardy
4.4/5-Thank God one of my best friends’ is a book worm just like me. I snagged this book from him and I’m so happy that I did. It was just amazing, holy shit.
(Summary from Goodreads)
Nya is an orphan struggling for survival in a city crippled by war. She is also a Taker—with her touch, she can heal injuries, pulling pain from another person into her own body. But unlike her sister, Tali, and the other Takers who become Healers’ League apprentices, Nya’s skill is flawed: She can’t push that pain into pynvium, the enchanted metal used to store it. All she can do is shift it into another person, a dangerous skill that she must keep hidden from forces occupying her city. If discovered, she’d be used as a human weapon against her own people.
Rumors of another war make Nya’s life harder, forcing her to take desperate risks just to find work and food. She pushes her luck too far and exposes her secret to a pain merchant eager to use her shifting ability for his own sinister purposes. At first Nya refuses, but when Tali and other League Healers mysteriously disappear, she’s faced with some difficult choices. As her father used to say, principles are a bargain at any price; but how many will Nya have to sell to get Tali back alive?
Wow is one of the words that come to mind when I think about this book. The Shifter is told from Nya’s Perspective and she lives in a country where almost no one wants to live in. The idea for this story is an amazing one because it focuses on survival for Nya and her sister, Tali and how she found ways to feed herself without getting into too much trouble. The characters were good but I felt like they could have been better in a way. I also liked how there wasn’t too much romance in this.
There wasn’t very much that I didn’t like other than that I wished she told me more about some of the other countries that controlled Geveg and the people there. Also, even though I liked the Duke I didn’t like his men very much because they didn’t seem scary or that evil to me.
There was so much that I liked about this story but I think my favourite part had to be near the end when she had to make a choice between risking her life or saving the ones she cared about. The scene with the Duke was so intense I couldn’t put the book down. I felt like Nya was actually going lose some part of her because of him. I also liked how Janice Hardy didn’t make Nya this annoying character who thought they were great just because she was different or put in anything that made me roll my eyes. The fact that Nya didn’t really like her gift made me like her even more. There were so many twists and surprises that I was never bored with this book.
This book is more for tweens and such but it’s still great. I would recommend this book to anyone who liked the Hunger Games because the relationship between Nya and Tali is similar to the relationship to Katniss and Prim. Oh, and if you like fantasy novels with female heroines who kick serious ass.