Gives Light (Gives Light #1), Rose Christo
Publisher: Rose Christo
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Disability, Psychological, Series
Gives light is my all-time favourite YA series. I don’t believe I will ever find a YA series that will touch me as much as this series did. The first book is beautiful, mysterious, and captivating. I never believed I could fall for a book as hard as I did this. But the truth is, I don’t know many people who wouldn’t love this book, whether you are a fan of m/m or not, this is just one of those books that people must read, in my opinion. It’s always going to be on my favourites list.
From the first page, I was hooked and I remained hooked for a long time. I didn’t want to stop reading. It was one that I was close to tears when it ended, not because of the ending, but simply because it had ended. I felt like a baby, not wanting someone to take something away from me. I was dedicated to this story and the characters.
“If I’m gone for three days, call the police.”
Skylar’s dad was missing and he needed to find him. The first few pages we see him revealing some parts of his childhood, mainly going through the place he grew up. I think this was then I found myself falling in love with his voice. It suited him perfectly and I was able to picture him in my head. It went from him describing the town he grew up in to his arrival at the police station. That first chapter did a great job of drawing me in. Normally, it would take a while longer for me to really become invested in the plot. But I was intrigued from the moment I picked up the book.
Skylar spent a brief period with a foster mother until he was placed with his paternal grandmother. Upon meeting his grandmother, all I could think was “who is this witch?” Catherine Looks Over was a character that didn’t really appeal to me. I was really unsure about her because she just seemed so cold. When I say cold, I mean she didn’t really show much emotion. But she grew on me. A lot! Maybe that was because, in some ways, she was a lot like Skylar. They really did have several similarities when it came to expressing their emotions. Either way, she became one of my favourite ever secondary characters in a book.
Skylar soon began to settle in, and on his first day he befriended Annie Little Hawk. When Annie was introduced, I didn’t immediately warm to her either. But unlike most books in the genre, we had no trouble from her when it came to the couple in this book. It’s something that did pop into my head, but once I realised she had her own love interest, I was fine with her. They spent some time getting to know each other and she introduced him to her family. It’s not her family who caught his attention, though.
“That was when I saw him. What little I could see of him was obscured by shadow–but then the flames jumped and cast him in sudden light. He was my age, maybe a little older.”
Skylar noticed Rafael almost straight away. Their relationship was a slow burner that began when Skylar figured out who Rafael was, the son of his mother’s killer. But that didn’t discourage Skylar. Neither did Rafael’s standoffish nature. In fact he was drawn to the lonely, misunderstood boy – the boy who soon stole my heart as well. And it was such an instant thing; I almost couldn’t believe how much I loved him. Honestly, I don’t think I could have loved Rafael more if I tried to. He was really just one of those lost souls who was judged because of his family.
Rafael was such a wonderful character. He was a massive part of this story. He brought out the best in Skylar. Not in the conventional way, but he gave me a reason to believe things wouldn’t be doom and gloom. He knew Skylar, could understand what Skylar was saying, even when no words were spoken. Their connection was immediate. It was strong and it was emotional, too. It was gradual in some sense, but instant in another. It was like they had been friends their whole lives. I just have to say really quickly, I adored how they bonded. I’m not always a believer in the meant-to-be-together thing, but I so believed it here.
He always knew what I wanted.
He was across the room in two strides. He took me by the waist in warm hands. And he kissed me.
Though the romance element was not forgotten, it was not shoved in your face either. Neither boy had real experience with romantic relationships. Skylar – having been kissed before – was a lot more forward with what he wanted; Rafael had never been kissed, but learned what he wanted. The way the first kiss was described had me swooning so bad. Yeah, it wasn’t hot and steamy like in erotic books, but it had its own special passion. Maybe it was because I was so eager for them to get together it just felt like that. But I am serious when I say it was one of the best kisses I have ever read.
All the mystery had me second guessing myself. Skylar’s dad, Paul, was where the book finished off, more or less. His return brought more questions than answers. And I’m not going to reveal anything more about his return. I don’t want to spoil this book or the series for people who haven’t read it/them. I will say this book is an amazing beginning to an amazing series. It is one of the best books I have ever read. And I don’t think you need to be a teenager or very young either. To enjoy this book all you really need is to be able to fall in love with amazing characters and a wonderful, mysterious plot.
I highly recommend this book. It was amazing and something special that I will keep with me forever.