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Paranormalcy Hardcover – August 31, 2010

415 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Paranormalcy Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up–First in a trilogy, this clever, must-have debut focuses on sassy Evie, 16, who calls the International Paranormal Containment Agency home. Armed with her unique ability to see through all paranormal “glamours” and her trusty pink taser, Evie bags, tags, and helps IPCA track and contain a variety of familiar creatures. Despite her unconventional life (no origin story, mermaid best friend, werewolf colleagues, etc.), she considers herself to be pretty normal–until shape-shifting elemental and extremely cute Lend breaks into IPCA looking for answers and ironically becomes one of the agency's latest puzzles. The more pressing concern: Who's been murdering paranormals? Lend's arrival; fae ex-boyfriend's (literally) hot, increasingly threatening advances; unsettling dreams; and a well-planned attack on the agency force Evie to face surprising revelations about IPCA and herself. White's storytelling successfully balances the fun and the sinister. There's an interesting mix of magic and technology. The pace is brisk with plenty of action. White's faeries (not vamps) are the beautiful and manipulative paranormals to watch out for, a refreshing change for some readers. Characterization is consistent, though Evie is the most fleshed out. A perfect blend of normal/supernatural, she simultaneously doubts her genetic makeup while yearning for and worrying about typical teenage concerns. Featuring a clever, kick-butt heroine channeling both Buffy and a PG Sookie, this book will likely fly off library shelves.–Danielle Serra, Cliffside Park Public Library, NJ. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Sixteen-year-old Evie learns that she is not quite the person she thought she was in this creature-feature mash-up. Possessing the unique ability to recognize paranormals beneath their glamour, Evie has lived most of her life under the protection of the International Paranormal Containment Agreement (IPCA), an organization dedicated to the cataloging and neutralizing of paranormal creatures. After a mysterious entity begins killing paranormals around the world, Evie discovers some startling truths about her own identity. This is a fast-paced, entertaining debut, reminiscent of the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series in its story of a seemingly normal girl coerced to work for a supernatural agenda that she doesn’t always understand. White creates compelling tension as Evie longs for a normal teenhood while trying to preserve the humanity she has always believed to be her birthright; a love triangle adds further conflict, as Evie must choose between not only two different interests but two starkly different destinies. Alternately funny and tragic but never maudlin, White’s debut will have broad appeal among fantasy fans. Grades 9-12. --Kara Dean

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Product Details

  • Series: Paranormalcy (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen; First Edition edition (August 31, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061985848
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061985843
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (415 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #408,027 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Kiersten White is the New York Times bestselling author of the Paranormalcy trilogy, the Mind Games series, The Chaos of Stars, Illusions of Fate, In the Shadows with artist Jim Di Bartolo, and the upcoming And I Darken. Kiersten lives with her family in San Diego, California. Visit her at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

80 of 90 people found the following review helpful By Parajunkee VINE VOICE on August 31, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I bleeping loved this book. I had high expectations and White delivered. If you are in the mood for a feel-good, action-packed book that balances light and fluffy with dark and stormy perfectly, this is the book for you. White does a balancing act between YA chick lit and deep paranormal romance well, lightening it up when you need it and sinking you deep into the rough and tumble right as you are getting tired of the cotton candy. YA fans - the publishers keep on delivering us some great debut authors, Kiersten White is now on that list and I say, "Keep It Coming."

REVIEW: Evie's pretty normal, yep, a normal sixteen year old. She likes pink, her weekly dose of television teen drama and shopping. It doesn't really matter that she works and lives within the confines of the International Paranormal Containment Agency, or that she is the only one on the planet that can see through a paranormals' glamour, she's still normal, an average human teenager, who just likes to name her weapons and paint them pink. Nothing strange about that.

On a routine bag and tag of a vampire Evie comes back to head quarters to find that her boss and stand-in mother wannabe, Raquel is not exactly Raquel anymore. She's someone wearing Raquel's face. A quick zap with her taser and situation handled...or is it? As more is revealed about the skin-changing stranger, Evie begins to realize that there is more to him than meets the eye, and she just might be at the center of all the controversy that is ranging throughout the paranormal world.

Great world building. Excellent character development. Touching romance. Heart-warming friend bonding. Heart-string pulling death and destruction. Skin-tingling evil behavior by the antagonist. Hair-pulling inner conflict... the list goes on.
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53 of 64 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer L. Rinehart VINE VOICE on September 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I almost loved this book. There are many reasons to like it and it hits all the right highs and lows.

There's a big secret. One that Evie, the heroine, doesn't even know.

There's Lend, the mysterious boy with a strange shapeshifting power. He isn't even sure what he is and Evie, with her years of experience with paranormal creatures is just as stumped by him.

There's Reth, short for Lorethen, the scary beautiful Fairy with an unfortunate obsession for Evie.

There's Lish, a mermaid and Evie's best friend and there's the IPCA itself, International Paranormal Containment Agency, whose secrets run deeper than Evie ever imagined.

But for me the fly in the ointment is the way the story is told. Told being the key word. The reader is told that Reth is creepy, told that Evie is unhappy with her life, told that she has a crush on someone and told about her close friendships with a couple of IPCA employees. So, when something big and awful happens to someone Evie cares about, it's hard for me to really care. Not that I relish books that leave me weepy and disturbed, but there wasn't enough character development for me to be invested (and then heartbroken) about the person who died.

I couldn't help comparing it to the pivotal death scene in the Hunger Games. I listened to that book at the gym and when a certain character (I can't say her name without ruining that book for others) died, I wept. I had to walk away from the weight equipment area and mop up in the sweaty bathroom.

The same with the death that occurs in the fifth Harry Potter, the second Vampire Academy, I could go on, but I think I've made my point. There isn't enough to get worked up about if the audience can't connect.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By booksnob on May 29, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This book is perfect. I'm *slightly* outside the age range of the target audience for this book, but found the romance between Evie and Lent as captivating as the romance in the adult urban fantasies I typically read.

Evie is just so cool - I want to be her friend, or better yet, BE her. It's so refreshing to have a heroine with personality, strength and SELF-RESPECT - something that's really lacking in a lot of young adult romances these days *cough* Twilight *cough*. And Tasey - Evie's pink, bejeweled taser - is the best named weapon in any book I've read, bar none.

I also really appreciated the originality of Paranormalcy's preternatural creatures and world-building. The author relies on a lot of traditional folklore - i.e. her fairies are either in the "Seelie" or "Unseelie" camp, vampires are bloodsuckers who use glamours to lure their prey, etc., but Evie's ability to see through these creatures' glamours to their true form allows us to see them in a different light.

And Lent - what a unique paranormal. That's one way to never get bored with a boyfriend - Lent can take on the form of any human he sees, kind of like Mystique from X-Men. But his original form is like nothing I've ever read about.

More importantly, though, his character is completely lovable. The flirting between Evie and Lent and budding romance is just so genuine and sweet - you can't help but fall in love with the both of them.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention how laugh-out-loud funny this book is. Between Tasey, Evie's mermaid BFF (who speaks through a computer, since she's underwater), and Evie's infectious narration, this is a book you need to read in the privacy of your home, unless you want to be caught giggling like a loon. Five stars.
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