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The Candidates (Delcroix Academy Series #1)

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Overview

Dancia Lewis has a secret problem: whenever she sees someone threaten a person she cares about, it's a disaster. Cars skid. Structures collapse. Usually someone gets hurt. So Dancia does all she can to avoid getting close to anyone, hoping to suppress her powers and stay under the radar. But when recruiters from the prestigious Delcroix Academy offer her a scholarship, she accepts. After all, it's a school for diplomats' kids and prodigies, not B students with uncontrollable ...

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Overview

Dancia Lewis has a secret problem: whenever she sees someone threaten a person she cares about, it's a disaster. Cars skid. Structures collapse. Usually someone gets hurt. So Dancia does all she can to avoid getting close to anyone, hoping to suppress her powers and stay under the radar. But when recruiters from the prestigious Delcroix Academy offer her a scholarship, she accepts. After all, it's a school for diplomats' kids and prodigies, not B students with uncontrollable telekinetic tendencies. Or is it?

This captivating debut, the first in a series, puts a paranormal twist on private school.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Debut author Scott launches the Delcroix Academy series with this light paranormal romance. Dancia has always kept a low profile, avoiding anything that might bring attention to her secret: whenever she witnesses injustice, a protective instinct kicks in and she’s able to take out the threat (knocking out a gunman or blowing out the tires on a car pursuing a boy). Now Dancia is being recruited to the freshmen class of Delcroix Academy, an exclusive boarding school for geniuses. A mediocre student, Dancia can’t understand why they want her, but Cam, a junior helping with her recruitment, persuades her to attend, and Dancia starts a new life and begins to come out of her shell. Dancia’s crush on Cam grows, as does her relationship with brooding Jack, who suspects there is a conspiracy at Delcroix. Dancia eventually discovers the truth about Delcroix, but the unresolved “telekinetic girl caught between good soldier and edgy rebel” love triangle (which, along with the academy setting, may feel familiar to X-Men fans) and Dancia’s determination to use her power for good pave the way for later books. Ages 12-up. (Aug.)
VOYA - Marlyn Beebe
Dancia Lewis has lived in Danville, Washington all her life. Her parents died when she was four, and she's lived with her grandmother ever since. Dancia has a secret "power" which manifests when someone she cares for is being threatened. It is not something she can control; things just happen, like cars driving into poles or buildings collapsing. Because of this, she takes great pains to be invisible, wearing non-descript clothing, not making friends, and striving to be exceptionally average. Thus, Dancia is taken by surprise when a recruiting team from the nearby exclusive and expensive Delcroix Academy shows up on her doorstep one day, offering her a full scholarship. She is reluctant at first (who will take care of her grandmother?), but eventually agrees, partially out of sheer curiosity as to why they'd want her. Once she gets there, she's even more curious. Unlike her, all the other students have a special talent or skill on which their curriculum focuses, while she takes ordinary classes. Why are there such strict rules about where they can go on the campus? And what is with the military-type training exercises? Does she really want to know? With a nudge from her mysterious fellow-student Jack, she determines to find out what is really going on at Delcroix. This book is designed to appeal to younger teens, and could easily be turned into a movie or television series. Reviewer: Marlyn Beebe
Caroline McCoy
Dancia isn't the top student, the best athlete, or the most talented artist. She doesn't mind that her drab clothing and unpopularity make her invisible, because the alternative could be dangerous. Dancia has powers she doesn't know how to handle. When she sees someone in trouble—car crashes, people falling—Dancia imagines unusual things happening to save them, and suddenly, they happen. Letting people into her life, she fears, will only make matters worse. When Dancia accepts a scholarship to the prestigious Delcroix Academy, she fears she won't be able to maintain her low profile for long. Will her new teachers find out about her gift? Can she risk making friends and keep her powers at bay? Teen readers will enjoy uncovering the mysteries behind Delcroix Academy in Inara Scott's The Candidates. Though Delcroix is fictional, Dancia's struggles to find truth, identity, and friendship inside its gates are engaging and real. Reviewer: Caroline McCoy
School Library Journal
Gr 6–10—Dancia works hard at being nondescript because of her supernatural powers: not too smart, not too pretty, not too friendly. So when recruiters from the prestigious Delcroix Academy show up at her house the summer before her freshmen year of high school and offer a full scholarship, she is sure that there has been some kind of mistake. Once at the academy, the teen begins to make friends and let people in to her life, including two equally interesting but very different young men. While this should be a good thing, Dancia can't help but worry; caring too much causes trouble. When she feels threatened, her protective instincts kick in and things happen that she can't control, like windows breaking and things collapsing, and sometimes people getting hurt. At Delcroix, Dancia realizes she is not alone with her powers and that a program can help her to control and strengthen her talents. Unfortunately, while great for Dancia, not everyone whom she has grown close to feels the same way. While nothing about Scott's premise is especially groundbreaking, the plot is quick and gratifying, and Dancia is much more empowered than the female protagonists in some other popular supernatural thrillers.—Jennifer Miskec, Longwood University, Farmville, VA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781423116363
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
  • Publication date: 8/24/2010
  • Series: Delcroix Academy Series , #1
  • Pages: 304
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: 740L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.78 (w) x 11.06 (h) x 1.03 (d)

Meet the Author


Inara Scott lives in Portland. She is currently hard at work on the next book in the Delcroix Academy series.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 47 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(21)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(9)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 47 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 10, 2010

    Fun, fabulous, devour-it read without an R rating!

    I read this book first to see if it would be appropriate for my almost 12 year-old daughter, and found myself totally enthralled! The writing is wonderful, and it's a great story with all the elements kids (and adults!) appreciate: a romance triangle, paranormal powers, a spooky boarding school, and the struggle between good and evil. But what sets this book apart are the wonderful REAL characters. The main character, Dancia, is such a perfect early teen girl - she suffers from insecurity, loves her grandmother, shuts herself off from others when she is overwhelmed, is swayed by charm and good looks, and has a strong moral compass that she is desperate to read correctly. I so appreciate that the subject matter remains fairly innocent, and was thrilled to give my daughter a green light for her to read it, too. It was a great introduction for my daughter to this exciting genre (she loved it!), and I can't wait for book two!!!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2010

    Amazing!

    I am in love with this book! Once I got started reading it I couldn't put it down. I am anxiously antispating the next book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 13, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    The Candidates is one of the novels that I have been dying to re

    The Candidates is one of the novels that I have been dying to read for such a long time that when I finally got the chance to read it I had been expecting so much. And already, I am happy to tell you all that the novel gave me everything I wanted and more! I will admit that because of the blurb that tells you only a brief bit of information I was slightly taking a shot in the dark, but after starting the fast paced prologue, I knew that The Candidates and I would be best friends (see what I did there?).

    Anyhow, the novel is based around the life of the main character, Dancia Lewis, an ordinary girl with extraordinary abilities, who is about to start her freshman year of high school. But! Dancia ends up finding herself at the elite Delcroix Academy, a boarding school for students that are geniuses and will benefit the world in the future. The only issue with Dancia going there is that she isn’t as extraordinary as a genius (which is the truth), what Dancia can do is much better. Dancia has an “ability” that only occurs in moments on great danger. That alone had me transfixed.

    Secondly, the novel constantly had me generating questions: Why is Jack so paranoid? Are the big gates that protect Delcroix Academy really meant to “Keep the bad guys out? Or keep us in?” (A good quote said by Jack during the novel and becomes a recurring sentence). Are the students at Delcroix being monitored 24/7? Will Dancia figure out that she might not be the only superhumanly gifted student at the school? I’m not giving you guys the answers *winky face*.

    Thirdly, I loved the characters. From Dancia’s best friends: Esther and Hennie, to the two leading males in the novel: Jack and Cam. I loved them all for many reasons: One of them including the fact that the characters were all in an age group similar to my own and so I found the situations that the characters were going through very believable (i.e. First kisses, dating, high school, homework, being watched because you may be a danger to society, etc.). Not to mention the fact that there is also a bit of a love triangle between Dancia, Jack and Cameron. I personally found Jack irresistible. He’s the bad boy, unafraid to bend the rules and has a tragic life story that built him into a strong character. And he’s a bit obsessed in love with Dancia. Cameron is basically the exact opposite of everything that Jack is. He’s the school golden boy and everything he does seems unquestionable… but are his actions really so innocent?

    Fans of The Darkest Powers Trilogy and Dark Visions will surely enjoy The Candidates or even somebody who just wants a bit of sci-fi, mystery and romance all fit into one book. You can take my word for it *thumbs up*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2012

    Mediocre

    This book was okay but wasn't anything amazing.

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  • Posted January 9, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Highly Recommended for paranormal lovers

    This was a great book to read over Christmas. It wasn't that long and it wasn't gloomy. It was an interesting mystery. First it took place at a boarding school for "special" kids. Blend into the woodwork Dancia is not sure why she's at the Delcroix Academy. But everyone seems to think she belongs there. And for the first time in her life, she's got friends. I loved the friends. Two very solid, very thoughtful and good friends. Hennie and Esther, unique names for some very unique but loyal friends. No real mean girls in this one except for Dancia's roommate, Catherine. Not Cathy or Cat. Catherine. Yeah she's uptight. But she's more of a control freak and lonely than anything else. That was my impression anyway. The school is unique. The selection of courses is vast and electives are varied-until you find what you're "special" at, you take all kinds of things. Dancia finds that she is not" special" in public speaking nor pottery. But she is good at attracting the attention of the resident bad boy, Jack who keeps telling her there is some kind of conspiracy going on at the school. The locked gates bother him. They, the kids at the school, are told it's to keep anyone undesirable out, but Jack thinks it's to keep them in and he shows Dancia some pretty good evidence that makes her question what she's been told. But she's also got the attention of the hottest guy on campus, the boy that came to her house to recruit her to come to Delcroix. He goes out of his way to pay attention to her and make her feel special. Now, as I read it, I had my doubts. Dancia is 15 and he's probably 17. What does a junior want with a 9th grader? I was suspect of his motives and what he wanted from her (not that!). But Dancia, being 15, doesn't question his attention to her. She thinks Cam's attraction to her is believable. When I told my husband about this part he nicknamed him Scam and I can't get past calling him that. Anyway, Dancia has to sort out who to believe and who can be trusted and the answer is surprising. And what Delcroix is really all about, besides producing senators, and famous painters and actors and ambassadors, is well, one of my favorite things- something paranormal. This was a quick read but left a lot to think about. I'm glad there is another book coming out soon so I can see what else goes on at Delcroix! Oh and Dancia finds out what she's "special" at. This book is appropriate for older MG and any YA reader who like paranormal reads with romance.Heather

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    Amaaazzzing!

    This book keeps you on end and keeps you reading all night! This book was not what i expected but i was pleasantly surprised! Definietely one of my favorites.

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  • Posted December 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    4 STARS

    I was impressed and surprised as to how quickly I fell in love with this novel. 'The Candidates' had me on my toes throwing guesses left and right, and still I would be stuck in mystery. The hidden secrecy of the school is what peaked my interest most. Who doesn't enjoy a little sleuthing!
    'The Candidates' by Inara Scott also reminded me of 'The House of Night' series mixed with the X-men. Whereby the students have special abilities and all attend a school specified in housing them, however, the students attending The Delcroix Academy don't even know they have any abilities at all.
    Ms Inara Scott has a great writing style because I was empathetic to each character. Especially with the relationship Dancia has with her grandmother, who by the way is so fraken awesome, and the raw friendship that Dancia has with Jack.
    Dancia is such an interesting character. I could not find any flaws to her, even though I disagree in the choice she made in the ending. I totally understand why Dancia did what she did. It was also a great way to set up for the sequel. But the ending is such a killer because I'm dying to read Book 2.
    I can't say much without giving away the juicy tid bits, but I can TOTALLY say that this is a MUST READ!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2011

    This book was so awesome.

    I couldn't put it down.

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  • Posted August 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Fun and exciting read

    Really good book. I couldn't put this book down once I got to the half way point! Can not wait to read the next one.

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  • Posted July 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Of The Candidates @ Book & Movie Depository blog

    Reviewed by: Cassandra Hernandez

    The story feels lagging I think because much was spent on the mystery of Delcroix Academy instaad of the characters. So it's easy to say that The Candidates is a good ride that has to take its time to conclude so you see its thrilling suspense and supernatural elements. I just love books in paranormal genres so this doesn't let down at all.

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  • Posted February 18, 2011

    jellybean:)

    best book ever ! :) i couldnt stop reading it, it was amazing: D

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  • Posted January 30, 2011

    The Candidates

    (from Murphy's Library)

    Dancia Lewis lives in Danville, a small town, with her grandmother, since she was 4. Her parents died on a car accident, they were on their way to visit Grandma when the accident happen-and Grandma is all Dancia has as family since then. You could picture Dancia as an ordinary 15 years old, but she's far from that.

    Dancia tries to keep herself out of people's attention. She doesn't have friends, she doesn't have enemies, she doesn't even have a cell phone. All because she's scared she can hurt people-badly. Dancia calls it instinct: whenever something dangerous is about to happen, she just thinks about things happening and they do happen. Like the guy who had a gun at a hospital-he could have hurt tons of people, and Dancia and Grandma-, Dancia threw herself on him, he "tripped" and hit his head. Last time she heard about him, he was in coma at the hospital-he could have died, and it was all her fault! So if Dancia doesn't have friends or enemies, she doesn't have to worry about people she cares about being threatened, right?

    When Mr. Judan shows up at her house offering her a scholarship at Delcroix Academy, Dancia is sure there's a mistake. At her school, all the kids know about Delcroix: the place where the rich kids study, they make fun of them the way you make fun of a movie star, or the president. How could she be one of them? Her grades are not that great-and she isn't the smartest girl on her own class-, it has to be a mistake. But Mr. Judan and Cameron Sanders, a junior student who shows up at her house with him, are sure there's no mistake.

    Dancia knows that's not a good idea-how could she possible blend in that school? There's no way she'll go unnoticed among all those rich kids-, but Grandma convinces her to give it a try: it's a chance she won't have again, she has to try at least. When classes start and Dancia befriends with people, things start to change. Now she has friends, and her first crush: Cam-who's always there for her whenever she needs and seems to not like Dancia's friend Jack anyway. Would he be jealous?

    Dancia knows Jack is different from the other kids at Delcroix, she just has no idea why, and why they're both there. When Jack tells her they've been watched all the time, she believes Jack's paranoid. Why would people watch every single step they make there? It's a school, not a prision, although Jack doesn't think like her.

    Dancia is naive and as cute as any 15 years old teenager could be, falling in love for the first time and trying to deal with her problems. What I missed in The Candidates, though, was a little bit more of action. The climax is predictable and there's action, but I wished there was more. I mean, I understand Dancia's reasons for not trying to learn about her power, but I wished she'd have tried to "play" with it before.

    The Candidates was a fast reading for me-and, again, I decided to read this book because of its cover. Isn't is stunning? Like on Nightshade, I found out about The Candidates when I was researching for a Book News post and found the cover of The Watchers, the second book of the Delcroix Academy series. Looking forward to August, when The Watchers will be released, to find out what happens with Dancia, Cam and Jack.

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  • Posted November 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    The Candidates

    If I'd have known that the M.C. of The Candidates was 14, I definitely wouldn't've picked it up. I prefer to read books about people who are my age or older, because I feel slightly weird reading about younger people. But, nonetheless, I did pick it up, and I liked it.
    The book starts off kinda slow, and I tired easily of Delcroix Academy descriptions. The whole place was overly exaggerated, and I was shaking my head at times.
    BUT, I did like Dancia (different name, eh?) and how she thought things through. Her power is cool, and this definitely earns the author points.
    Jack was cool, but we don't really get a good description of how Danica feels towards him. I did not like though, Cam. For some reason he just gave me a funny feeling.
    The book was predictable after the first...ten chapters. At least, it was obvious to me what was to come.
    The ending was cute, but I don't think that Inara Scott should've ended it as she did. It was a bit of a cliff hanger, readers not knowing (*spoiler*) what the hell was to become of Jack. I mean, he like, just left? How shady was that?
    Anyways, I liked the book. Even though it took me more time to read it then it should've, I will be reading the sequel, Delcroix Academy: The Watchers.

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  • Posted October 24, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Boarding school story with paranormal twist, plus a strong heroine

    Boarding school story with paranormal twist, plus a strong heroine, September 8, 2010


    This review is from: The Candidates (Delcroix Academy, Book 1) (Hardcover)

    Dancia can control her telekenetic power up to a point--the only time she moves heavy objects or throws people into walls with her mind is when someone she loves is threatened. Because of this great capacity for destruction, Dancia tries to keep the number of people she loves limited to one: her grandmother. To keep herself from making friends that she may feel compelled to supernaturally defend, she avoids personal conversations, wears neutral colors and pursues mediocrity with a passion. If she doesn't stand out in any way, it's easier for her to avoid entanglements.

    But Dancia's career as a wallflower comes to a close when representatives from Delcroix Academy, one of the most prestigious private high schools in the country, come to her grandma's tiny house to recruit her. Since their school is home to off-the-charts geniuses and immensely talented liberal arts students, Dancia figures that there can be only one reason they want her--Delcroix knows about her power. But after a lot of persuading, she's finally convinced that a new environment might hold some fresh opportunities for her. Since Dancia is too poor to afford a cell phone, I was pleased that she doesn't go swoony at the idea of comfort and privilege, and that she's suspicious of the scholarship offer. But since we wouldn't have a story if she didn't accept, I'm glad she caved in after much deliberation.

    A new complication in her life arises just before she leaves for school. She's out jogging and meets Jack, a boy about her age who looks like he's running for his life and says if anyone comes behind him, asking questions, she's to say that she didn't see him. Sure enough, a man in a car is chasing Jack, and Dancia gets angry and makes the creepy guy's car wreck in a perfect example of how easily her protective power can be triggered. When she meets Jack again on the bus to Delcroix and finds that he, too, is an incoming freshman, she knows it's more than coincidence. And when it looks like Jack may have powers similar to hers, and Cam, the handsome junior who helped recruit her for the school, warns her that hanging around Jack is a bad idea, Dancia's curiosity grows. Is Jack right to be paranoid about how closely they're all monitored at the academy? Should she trust her crush Cam when he says that Jack's dangerous?

    I quite liked the heroine. Dancia's just fourteen, but I'm proud of her dedication to doing the right thing--her dedication to protecting people from her own power is truly heroic. My only issue with her was her seeming addiction to Cam's presence, because to me it felt like she held on to hope of a relationship with him long after it seemed wise or feasible, but then when new information came to light...lets say I switched mental alliances a few times between him and Jack.

    The only real downside to the story was the tendency to collapse time. I understand that stories get dull if you follow every single minute of the protagonist's day, but I did find myself longing for a few more actual scenes to take the place of paragraphs where the events of a whole week or month were recounted in shortened form. For example, instead of having a scene where Jack and Dancia are talking after class, there are few times where the reader is simply told about the kind of talks t

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  • Posted October 14, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Jennifer Rummel for Teens Read Too

    Danica isn't normal, but she's never shared her secret with anyone. She's made herself become invisible because she doesn't want to hurt anyone else. She's forced out of her shell when recruiters from Delcroix Academy come to her home, where she lives with her grandmother. They offer her a scholarship to their prestigious school. Danica isn't sure she wants to attend, but she agrees to try for her grandmother's sake. Now, she's thrown into a world where everyone has a talent - everyone except for her and Jack, a boy she met who isn't sure he wants to be at the school, either. He doesn't like the gates that keep the school separated from the rest of the world - with them locked inside. They spend their time together, studying and hanging out. Little by little, Danica begins to relax. She lets herself develop a friendship with Jack and with two other girls. One of the recruiters, Cam, was a student, and he's shown an interest in Danica. She can't help but wonder if he just wants to be friends or something more. Then Jack comes to her with all these theories, and there's one regarding Cam. Is there something going on behind the scenes at Delcroix Academy? THE CANDIDATES is a very interesting start to this new series. I liked the tension, the discussion about the gate, and the friendship between Jack and Danica. I loved the secrecy surrounding the school and the supernatural powers of Danica. I also enjoyed the tension involving the love triangle between Jack and Cam with Danica, and can't wait to see where this series will go next.

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  • Posted September 25, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Great Read!

    WOW! This book has just amazed me. From the very beginning it was mysterious, keeping all the secrets, from me demanding me to read on to discover the truth. At first, when I started this book I was a little skeptical. I kept thinking that maybe I might get bored with it, but it soon proved me wrong.




    Dancia is scared. Scared for her life as well as others. Always living under the radar, never doing anything to draw attention to herself, she finds it impossible that she has gotten a full ride into the Delcroix Academy. There she finds friends, love and most importantly herself. I love Dancia. Her character was one I admired right away for her selflessness. She always thought of others before herself, and always thought of different ways to do things.




    The love interest in this book was maddening! I mean, two great completely cute boys and even I couldn't decide who to side with. Jack or Cam? Jack or Cam? The attraction she held with both of them was great. The drama, plot and the way the whole story paned out was perfect. The ending for me was just right. With all the went on, it was a good touch.




    Now for the secret. It was not at all what I was expecting although I was kind of right. The paranormal touch to it was one I seen before, so I wasn't as impressed. But the writing of the book, kept me well in the dark and always looking for more. I am definitely looking forward to read the next book.

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  • Posted September 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Congratulations

    Fourteen year old Dancia Lewis tries to live a quiet life with her grandmother. Dancia seems to be an average student in an average school. Why is she being paid a visit by recruiters from the very prestigious, Delcroix Academy? Could it have anything to do with the secret she is keeping? The secret she is afraid to share with her grandma, who has raised her since Dancia's parents died in a car crash when she was four. Recently, during a routine visit to the hospital, Dancia was forced to use her power without thinking, when a crazed man had threatened her grandma and other patients. These men couldn't know she had powers, could they? An amazing first novel. A smooth blending of teenage angst and the burgeoning of unexplained powers from within. Everyday situations handled with didactic ease. Unusual situations handled unusually well.

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  • Posted August 10, 2010

    Exciting New YA series

    My thoughts...This book is a solid start to an exciting new young adult series. While it does take place at a boarding school, this is not your typical story. The main characters have extraordinary abilities. The main character Dancia is whisked away to this elite school, without realizing she is not alone in her talents. She is a believable character. Dancia is not the most popular girl rolling in money and fancy clothes. She comes from the other side of the tracks. Her vulnerability makes her real. I immediately fell for the bad boy in this story. Despite everyone looking down on him, Jack has an incredibly strong character. He is street smart, original, brave, and unafraid of standing up for himself and his friends. The other characters in the story leave you wondering if they are trustworthy or honest. Even at the conclusion of the book, I still had doubts about the credibility of some of the people

    The plot of The Candidates offers something for everyone. A PG rated love triangle, mystery, magic, and page turning suspense fill the pages. Scott's writing draws the reader in on within the first chapter. She is developing a fascinating world that I can't wait to learn more about.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 11, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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