________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 17. . . .January 8, 2016


Truth. (Oleah Chronicles).

Michelle Johnson.
Ajax, ON: (www.oleahchronicles.com), 2015.
179 pp., trade pbk., $10.00.
ISBN 978-1-329-26727-5.

Grades 7 and up / Ages 12 and up.

Review by Janet Johnson.

*** /4



Youíre more cat than anything else. Lion to be specific. To give you a better idea, you're like a centaur in your true form, however, instead of the other half being a horse, it's a lion. You stand upright on your back legs and have the ability to morph into a lion, which is how your kind hunts.


Truth is the first book in what may be a series involving the life of a teen girl, Angel Seriki, and her parents. This young adult novel, which is part romance and part fantasy adventure, is set in modern day Toronto although it could be set in any large city in Canada. Angel Seriki and her parents are from another planet and have escaped an evil sorceress to live on Earth. The story begins when Angel is turning seventeen. Angel has no idea that she is from another planet. She believes she is a typical teenager whose life revolves around her friendship with Julie, someone she has known from elementary school and their experiences at high school. Then Angel meets a boy, Zander, who has transferred from a school for bright students. Angelís attraction to Zander changes her life from being an ordinary teen as she learns from him about her origins and true identity as an Oleah.

     Not only does Angel have to incorporate a love interest into her life, but she also has to accept the fact that she is not a human being. Furthermore, she is also royalty and the potential leader of her people. Her role is to unite her people and lead them to victory against the evil sorceress who happens to be Luciferís sister, Sindrell. Zander used to be one of her followers, but he has changed his allegiance to help the Siriki family because of his love for Angel. However, when Sindrell finds Zander on Earth, she also finds the family and attacks them, taking Angelís best friend Julie as hostage. Throughout Truth, there is a theme of good versus evil, but, more importantly, the spotlight is on the relationship between the two main protagonists, Zander and Angel. The consistency of theme, plot and characters aids in ďsuspension of disbeliefĒ even though the mixture of characters varies from fantasy and mythological to the angelic.

     The plot line of the book has a familiar ring to it. Aliens hiding out on Earth seems like something I had read before. For instance, Superman was an alien hiding on earth. However, although there are elements of the book that seem familiar, the romance subplot is the cohesive element that drives the story.

     The characters of Angel, her parents, Julie and Zander come alive as the story progresses. Right from the start, the reader learns that Angelís parents are concerned for her studies and that they are overprotective and try to keep Angel from having a boyfriend. They seem like ordinary parents. Julie, Angelís friend, has a very outgoing nature and overactive imagination, and she is much more outgoing than Angel. The two girls do everything together. However, when Angel meets Zander, her life changes as she becomes involved with him. Readers learn that, just as Angel is from another planet, so too is Zander only he is a vampire. Even though this seems a strange mixture of characters, it works well, and I was interested in the budding romance between the two main protagonists.

     I enjoyed the story very much and look forward to the next book when the reader will learn how or if they are able to rescue Angelís friend. Truth is available for readers as an ebook, and readers might also be interested in Michelle Johnsonís website : www.oleahchronicles.com.


Janet Johnson is a retired librarian who used to teach Childrenís Literature for the Library Technician Program at Red River College in Winnipeg, MB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
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ISSN 1201-9364
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