Review: The Token: A Breed Apart

The Token: A Breed Apart
The Token: A Breed Apart by Natasha Rogue
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Callie Michaels isn’t pretty or popular, but her singing more than makes up for all she lacks. And as long as she focuses on what’s really important, she can survive high school. But how can she focus with all the drama? Between her best friend’s odd issues and a daily dose of weirdness from the social elite, she’s starting to wonder if she’s the only normal one around.

Just as her life begins spiraling out of control, the answer comes to her in a dream. In exchange for a token of blood, a demon will give her everything she desires. She says “yes.” From that point on, she finds herself changing, becoming something far from normal. Something dangerous.

No one is what they seem—least of all her. While the supernatural creatures around her struggle to maintain their humanity, Callie slowly loses hers. She doesn’t even know what’s important anymore. Friendship, the future, love? And is there anyone who can make her care?

At first I thought, demon in the book along with other supernatural stuff – yay! But when I started the book, two things became apparent – one, Callie is unreliable as a narrator because she has no idea what’s going on around her and two, this book would have been much better with a dual POV, preferably in James’ or Ethan’s. As far as heroines go, Callie is pretty passive. She is a plaything between the Hale siblings (hey, Tammy was stupid to keep things from her) and a source of conflict between James and his family. It seemed to me like she was the entire reason for almost all the problems in the book and boy, she did absolutely nothing to solve it. I thought maybe her shining moment will come in the ending at the very least, but nope – someone else saves the day.

First half of the book – I was as confused as Callie as to what was going on. As I said, she is not a good narrator and half of the time she was either unconscious or being told to go away so the others can have a secret chat. Which means basically no clue as to what was going on. Maybe it was to give it an air of mystery but it supremely failed there and only served to confuse the poor reader, that is, moi. If not for the fact that I already knew James and his family were shifters (thanks to the blitz excerpt), I probably would have thought them to be misogynistic idiots too. I had enough of the alpha dominance thing in this book, by the way. The males asserting their territory over and over, even in case of females was annoying, to say the least. I wanted to even smack Amy up her head for being stupid, and creating unnecessary girl drama for the first half.

Second half was focused on Callie being taken over by the demon to such extent that her panther-in-shining-armor James has to come to the rescue. Ethan becomes less of an asshole, and people are unreliable and suspicious all around. Who exactly wanted to hurt her – we do not know because the ending basically negates everything that happened. I did not forgive Nick, though – any guy influencing a girl to date him via shitty means is a douche – no question. Callie – I don’t even know why she was stupid enough to make a deal with the demon. There was no clear motivation as to why she did so.

Coming down to the technicalities, the writing was good. The scenes were well-written and eloquent, but the plot was just pulling the book down. Secondly, character construction was poor, and most times their emotions or reactions were unclear. And let’s not even begin with world-building. I was excited over the blend of supernatural elements, but because Callie does not know anything, we also don’t get to know much. I had a lot of questions by the end of the book – and none were explained. If we at least had a second POV, it would make things clearer. Hell, I would have even not minded Nick’s POV. So, in the end, though the story had potential and good writing, it was shadowed by the lack of clear characterization and direction. I do not even know if there will be a sequel, so I just feel this book was inadequate and not satisfying.

Received an ARC from Fido Publishing via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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