My Unusual Talent

Young Adult - Sci-Fi
208 Pages
Reviewed on 11/01/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Amy Powers for Readers' Favorite

Cooper just wants to be a normal teenager, but having the secret gift – or curse, as he sees it – of telekinesis makes that impossible. My Unusual Talent by Jenna Marcus presents Cooper’s unique journey into self-discovery and self-acceptance of his skills. When cleaning in the attic, he discovers his grandfather’s old journal, which gives him insight into the man who has always been kept secret within his family. Meanwhile, people around town have been reported missing, and the situation is oddly familiar to the unsolved events that Cooper’s grandfather wrote about in his journal more than forty years ago. Cooper sets out on a complicated mission to learn the truth about his grandfather, solve the unsolved mystery from the past, and rescue his missing girlfriend.

With science fiction, mystery, action, adventure, family dynamics, history, and just a touch of romance, My Unusual Talent is perfect for teen readers who enjoy a fast-paced read that spans several genres and generations. Jenna Marcus has managed to piece together multiple storylines across multiple genres that have come together in a smooth and fun-to-read way. Cooper and his grandfather each have their own stories, and it was fun to see how the past repeated itself as Cooper unraveled two mysteries at once. As Cooper discovered more about his grandfather’s past, he also discovered more about his own abilities and how to present himself to the world. There are definitely some hidden messages in Cooper’s story that teen readers would appreciate hearing. I look forward to reading more from this author.

Susan Sewell

A high school senior with unique capabilities must face his fears when his classmates disappear in the brilliant young adult novel, My Unusual Talent by Jenna Marcus. Cooper is not a typical teenager. Born with telekinetic abilities, Cooper can move things without touching them. Since he was very young, his parents insisted he never uses his power in front of others to avoid unnecessary conflicts. Cooper, afraid someone will learn his secret and turn him into a laboratory rat, conceals his secret from everyone, including his girlfriend Sally. Lately, things around his high school have taken a sinister turn. Cooper, his sister Amber, and Sally witness muggings and assaults occurring in front of the school, and now adolescents from town are disappearing without a trace. In the meantime, Cooper finds his grandfather's journal while cleaning the attic and discovers a family secret that may be behind the recent tragedies. Is there a connection between his family's secret and the missing teens? Can Cooper locate the kidnap victims and rescue them without him becoming the next victim?

My Unusual Talent by Jenna Marcus is an exciting young adult novel packed with intrigue and suspense. It is an engaging story with appealing characters, a fascinating plot, and a dramatic storyline. Starting with a thrilling prologue, the story's pace and intensity build as the story develops, escalating to a splendid conclusion. It is a sensational paranormal novel filled with drama, mystery, excitement, and teenage angst that promises to satisfy those who enjoy adventures with adolescent protagonists.

K.C. Finn

My Unusual Talent is a work of fiction in the science fiction and adventure subgenres and was penned by author Jenna Marcus. The work is intended for the young adult reading audience and contains some scenes of fantasy peril and suspense. Part mystery, part supernatural adventure, we find ourselves following protagonist Cooper O’Neil as he struggles with day-to-day teenage life and fitting in while also hiding his ultimate secret: his telekinetic abilities. But when people in town start vanishing and the events replicate an anomaly from his grandfather’s diary forty years prior, Cooper realizes he must face up to his abilities in order to help those he cares about most.

Author Jenna Marcus knows exactly what a young adult audience wants and needs to keep them reading chapter after chapter in this exciting science fiction novel. I enjoyed the balance between the emotional realism of the characters and the supernatural abilities which Cooper possesses, as this kept everything grounded in something true and relatable while also being very exciting to read about. The dialogue was appropriate for the teen audience, casual in its exposition, and never forced or too mature for the character who was speaking. I also enjoyed how the plot intensified as more threads from the mystery came together, and the pace picked up to hurtle toward a well-considered conclusion. Overall, I would highly recommend My Unusual Talent for fans of heartfelt coming-of-age stories with a wonderful science fiction twist and relatable heroes with some very inventive gifts.