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Hunting Lila - Sarah Alderson How do you get a boy to read a book that, for the most part, has a girl trying to express her love for her brother’s friend whom she has known ’since forever’, and then find them hand in hand almost all of the time for the latter half of the book? The answer: throw a bunch of superpowers and abilities into the mix to saturate the romance and give him something explosive to look forward to in the end. And it needs to be quite “explosive”.In Sarah Alderson’s debut novel Hunting Lila, we first find Lila at a moment in her life where she realises she did something terrible, even though she was just defending herself. Through her telekinetic abilities of which she can’t yet fully control, Lila flings a knife into her mugger’s eye. This act of defence sweeps Lila off her feet and onto a whirlwind adventure full of mystery and lies, secrets and betrayals, action and suspense, and romance – that my lady blogging friends deem steamy and seductive . . .*choke*. Readers will find themselves swept up into the adventure too, just like Lila, and will find it hard to ground their feet until the very end.To get far away from the guilt, Lila jumps onto a plane and flies from London to Southern California where her brother lives. Jack and his friend Alex work for The Unit, a top secret corporation that even the FBI know nothing about. They have enough on their hands with their duty at work to worry about Lila. But Lila has no where else to go. With her mother dead, her father never home due to his travelling occupation, and the mugging incident that has pulled her away from normality, sunny California is the only place Lila deems safe. Jack constantly urges Lila to go back home, but when she finds out that The Unit is connected to her mother’s murder, leaving is the last thing on her mind. Justice, and finding who murdered her mother is what she strives to discover, even if it means she’ll have to reveal her ability too.Lila is a fantastic protagonist and character. Through Sarah’s suave narration we feel every emotion that Lila expresses. Her family is practically in ruins leaving her alone. The one person however, that she knows who will give her comfort is Alex. Every character within Hunting Lila is well established. Each character has a facade which is either penned negatively by someone else on the rival side, or by themselves, their misunderstood self. Smashing the facades of so many of the characters within the book through Lila is what makes this book so ace. Sarah gives us the opportunity to view the two sides of the one coin – the one character – and when it is flipped, only one side will truly show.Hunting Lila is packed with everything from the first page. The multi-layered plot that Sarah has so cleverly crafted engages you from the word go. There is no use believing anything as when it all changes and the tables turn, you’re going to find your jaw bruised and battered from falling to the floor; your fingers blistered; your eyelids paralysed; the pages ripped. If you love surprises make sure to pick up this book as you won’t regret it. I did however find the book imbalanced a bit due to the romance aspect but that is the reason why five-star reviews have been churning out ever from such girl-swooners of the world. The romance . . . the romance. . . I lost my train of thought thinking about the romance . . . the romance . . . *facepalm*