Ever since HarperCollins announced that they were going to publish The Carrier of the Mark, there has been a crazy amount of excitement spreading around because of it. Although I am a member of inkpop.com, the website where the book and its author, Leigh Fallon, were discovered, the general excitement running through the site never really fazed me. I guess that was probably because I had joined long after Fallon, and since I have never really been incredibly active in the community I never had the pleasure of meeting her or reading the book in its early stages. Still, since it was the first book published through inkpop, there was more than enough blog posts, forum threads, and the such to keep me well acquainted with the title. Without that general knowledge, I probably wouldn't have had the privilege of reading it.
***May contain spoilers***
It's been a long, long time since I've been blown away by a book without being completely confused (Shakespeare tends to blow me into confusion, but that's different). I find it hard to believe someone could come up with such a complex idea as the Marked without losing the reader in the process, and yet Fallon has done it. Throughout the book, I could tell that there was so much more to the story, so much more back story, but it was well spaces and told only in small chunks to absorb, so that by the time the next chunk of information came, the reader had had plenty of time to absorb and reach an understanding of the last chunk.
Generally I'm not the biggest fan of romances where the characters fall for each other in a ridiculously short amount of time, as Adam and Megan do, but the farther I read, the less it bothered me. It made more sense when we learned that the elements attracted one another, and hence their quick love didn't seem to be entirely their fault, and made a little bit more sense as to why they got together so quickly.
The one thing that really bothered me was the swearing used throughout the book. I understand that in this day and age teens swear just as much as in the book if not more, but I still do not believe it to be right. I am also of the firm conviction that you can have excellent teen fiction without needed to insert foul language.
I loved the setting as well. I thought it was really cool that Fallon uses locations that actually exist. The intertwined history and myths made it so much more real and interesting, as well as the added flavor of the dialogue and expressions. I quickly found myself wanted to read more, until finally there was no more to be read. I look forward to the publication of The Carrier 2 (unnamed), and this time, I'll be on the lookout and headed to a bookstore to get it, not a different book. :-)