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Dancia Lewis is far from popular. And that's not just because of her average grades or her less-than-glamorous wardrobe. In fact, Dancia's mediocrity is a welcome cover for her secret: whenever she sees a person threatening someone she cares about, things just...happen. Cars skid. Structures collapse. Usually someone gets hurt. So Dancia does everything possible to avoid getting close to anyone, belieiving this way she can supress her powers and keep them hidden. But when recruiters from the prestigious Delcroix Academy show up in her living room to offer her a full scholarship, Dancia's days of living under the radar may be over. Only, Delcroix is a school for diplomats' kids and child geniuses--not B students with uncontrollable telekinetic tendencies. So why are they treating Dancia like she's special? Even the hottest guy on campus seems to be going out of his way to make Dancia feel welcome. And then there's her mysterious new friend Jack, who can't stay out of trouble. He suspects something dangerous is going on at the Academy and wants Dancia to help him figure out what. But Dancia isn't convinced. She hopes that maybe the recruiters know more about her "gift" than they're letting on. Maybe they can help her understand how to use it...But not even Dancia could have imagined what awaits her behind the gates of Delcroix Academy.
I started 'The Candidates' at 10.00 pm last night and finished it at 11.30 am this morning. Could not put it down. I loved the characters, the suspense, the romance, the uncertainty - in fact the whole shooting match. Everything about it seemed real to me, even tho' it is basically a variation on the 'X-men' theme. It was so much fun to read.
Dancia has powers that she doesn't know how to control, but isn't inclined to abuse them - just a nice, sweet girl who tries to avoid the spotlight and blend into the background, rather than hurt people.
'Thank you, oh thank you. He must have hit the steering wheel, because a crack ran down one lens of his sunglasses, and a thin line of blood connected his eyebrows. But he was alive.' (36)
Jack is the good-looking, bad boy, that you can't help but like - tortured, but with a reason.
'I cringed. Jack was using his cold, I-don't-give-a-crap voice, the one I'd heard him use on Trevor and teachers who tried to get him to behave in class.' (140)
Cam is the good-looking, good guy that you crush on, but there's something not quite right about him. That sense of 'not-quite-right' is almost palpable and I just loved it.
'We made our way out of the library, my hand tucked inside Cam's. I ran through a hundred different reasons why he might be holding my hand, none of which involved his everlasting love and devotion.' (114)
I really wasn't sure what was going to happen with the 'triangle' of Dancia, Jack and Cam, and without giving away anything, I found myself really pleased with the way things turned out, although I am sure that there will be major twists in the follow-up - 'The Watchers' - which I think is due out next August, but don't quote me on that.
A wonderful start to a new series. Can't wait for the next one.