Hush Money (Talent Chronicles) by Susan Bischoff
They call their abilities Talents, and that’s what they call themselves as well. Talents are people born with supernatural powers, feared by the population at large. Possession of an “unregistered ability” has become illegal, and those who are discovered are forcibly removed to government-run research facilities. They do not return.
And so the Talents try, as best they can, to keep their abilities secret–some more successfully than others. For some, keeping that secret begins to define who they are. That’s where Hush Money begins…
Be normal, invisible. Don’t get close to anyone. Those are the rules to live by for seventeen-year-old Joss. She spent years as an outsider, hoping to hide what she is, until the new girl, Kat, decides she’s friend material. Kat doesn’t realize her mistake when she stands up for Joss against Marco, a guy who’s been giving Joss a hard time since freshman year. Joss is horrified when these heroics lead to the reveal of Kat’s Talent. Now she has an unasked-for best friend, who is the victim of an extortion plot by the school bully, who used to like Joss. And if all that weren’t complicated enough, Dylan, Joss’s long-time crush, is finally starting to talk to her. But as Marco’s best friend, can Dylan be trusted at all? Can Joss keep her secret and still save her friend? And what’s more important, staying safe or doing what’s right?
Hush Money is totally different than the prequel that I read. But the characters in Impulse Control (Talent Chronicles .0.5) have greater significance. The contrast in setting made me realize the differences and similarities each group of characters are facing.
It reminds me of a teen drama with superpowers. Joss is another good example of the post Buffy feminist renaissance. She’s strong, capable, and in short badass. Yet she still shows her vulnerability. She’s not a born leader but leadership has been thrust upon her.
The constant shifting of perspective is the one thing I didn’t like about the novel. I had to put it down several times, even though I didn’t want to. When I came back the first person voice became confusing, if I didn’t go back for the reminders of the POV.
I give Hush Money (Talent Chronicles 1) 3 out 5.