The Missing by Jerico Lenk Blog Tour with Personal Review and Giveaway :)
I love the paranormal and this definitely fit that bill. Willow or Will as he was raised, is still struggling with his gender issues which is a very strong theme throughout the book. When he is asked and joins a league called the Black Cross, the motherly figure in his life Zelda shows him some information on his mother's death so many years ago and tells him that he may not be welcomed back if he joins. The sad part is that Will already does not seem to share a good relationship with his father - and this job - although something Will is interested in - seems to be something that will tear them apart even further. But it is what Will wants and what he does well, so in spite of what could happen he takes the job and leaves home. He arrives at his new home and immediately his gender comes into play yet again because they believe him to be male and they want him to sign contracts and he struggles with his inner self as to what he needs to do. This is one thing I love about the book - between contracts and women and other things, Will struggles to be WILL and not WILLOW. But can he maintain the charade if it really IS a charade? Is he Will only because that is what his father wanted or is it because it's what he wants? As only 2 people in the world - Zelda and his father - know that Will is really Willow, we only know that Will has said his father didn't know how to raise a girl when his mother died, and it wasn't quite clear whether he forced this onto Will or he did it because he wanted his father's approval.
What is so special about Will? Well the first thing we see is that he can clearly see ghosts ... and most recently, is able to be possessed. And it's not something that seems to scare him off, thus the reason for the job at Black Cross. So throughout the novel we see Will doing his job and his colleagues are quite a crew between Clement, Mr O'Brien and of course the one who becomes such a good friend, Cain Kingsley. I really loved the names in this book, I thought there was a great mixture of mythological names, fictional character names as well as religious names - of course Cain being possibly the most intriguing religious name - does that mean he will turn on his friend Will as Cain did to his brother Abel? Good question - as events start to escalate with the Black Cross, Will becomes more entangled in the web of paranormal, and we also see that he begins to FEEL more which could very well be from his gifts or from him being scared. The underlying fear that I got hints about were about his father and who he really was. It might just be me because I am an English lit major, but it seems that there are a lot of "father figures" in this novel. Whether they be religious fathers or whatever, it all goes back to the gender struggle and the relationship between Will and his father.
I won't give away any more because you HAVE to read this book - but it's so good and definitely keeps you entertained, especially if you love the paranormal. But some questions I asked myself before finishing were: will we find out the REAL truth about Will and his father?; will Will choose to remain a male or will he decide that his real destiny is to be Willow?; and of course will he continue working with the Black Cross and did they have anything to do with his mother's death and that is why when he left he was told he may not be welcomed back.
I give this book FIVE STARS!!!!
Unabashed weeb probably burning incense and drinking too much coffee at this very moment. Out for queer representation and great sex hair. Beyond ready for the upcoming Vampire Chronicles TV series.