Release date: November 22nd 2016
Four girls with the power to control the elements and save the world from a terrible evil must come together in the first epic novel in a brand-new series.
When Phantoms—massive beasts made from nightmares and darkness—suddenly appeared and began terrorizing the world, four girls, the Effigies, each gained a unique power to control one of the classical elements: earth, air, fire, and water. Since then, four girls across the world have continually fought against the Phantoms, fulfilling their cosmic duty. And when one Effigy dies, another girl gains her power as a replacement.
But now, with technologies in place to protect the world’s major cities from Phantom attacks, the Effigies have stopped defending humanity and, instead, have become international celebrities, with their heroic feats ranked, televised, and talked about in online fandoms.
Until the day that New York City’s protection against the Phantoms fails, a man seems to be able to control them by sheer force of will, and Maia, a high school student, unexpectedly becomes the Fire Effigy.
Now Maia has been thrown into battle with three girls who want nothing to do with one another. But with the first human villain that the girls have ever faced, and an army of Phantoms preparing for attack, there isn’t much time for the Effigies to learn how to work together.
Can the girls take control of their destinies before the world is destroyed forever?
I was really excited for this book because of the comparisons to things like Pacific Rim, Sailor Moon, and the Avengers. There was also a bit of Buffy thrown in with the ‘one Effigy dies and another gets activated’ addition. I really liked the concept of it and as a TV show or movie, I think the visuals would have been amazing. As a book, there were parts that ended up falling flat but it was still enjoyable.
Maia, the main character, was an Effigies fangirl. She was a member of their fan clubs, posted in forums dedicated to them, followed their action and their stats online. She was also harsh toward two of the girls she felt less deserving than the other two. So when one of the Effigies regarding as one of the greats was killed, Maia discovered she was chosen to replace her. And her whole world changed. She always wanted to be an Effigy, to be special, but the reality was nothing like she thought it would be.
I liked the other girls and I’m definitely hoping we get to see a lot more of them in the sequel. They were all dealing with becoming Effigies in their own ways, some more successfully than others, and really, they were all just girls who were chosen for something they didn’t really want but now they were the only thing that could save the world. It would be a lot for anyone to handle.
There wasn’t a whole lot of history or world-building yet. I would have liked a little more at least. Maia wasn’t too knowledgeable about why the world became filled with the Phantoms and where Effigies came from so I could understand having no big information moment. There were some moments where they were trying to figure out some mystery where we got some more information on Effigies but I’m hoping for more in the sequel.
Overall, it was an entertaining read and the action sequences were great.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.