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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
Ethereals: A New World by S.S. Pravas is a new and exciting twist to the tried and tested theme of young people with superpowers. Stacia, Eric, Clarisa, and Rani are just about to begin their college life. Despite their diverse background and ethnicities, they share one common trait: They are the new generation of Ethereals, a highly-organized group of people with so-called Ethereal abilities. Davy, a notorious Ethereal, has uncovered an ancient virus that he is planning to introduce into his influenza vaccines and administer them to billions to take over their minds. Davyn has a whole network of Ethereals who can help him achieve his goals. Stacia, Eric, Clarisa, and Rani must retrieve an ancient stone that can stop this mind-controlling virus.
S.S. Pravas proves that the superpower theme in fiction is here to stay and that there are a thousand and one ways to put a twist on the theme as evidenced by the way aesthetics are applied in this storyline. I personally like the way that Pravas doesn’t overpower the characters by putting a certain level of what they can do, and that they still have to work hard to enhance their powers, especially Rani, who puts the most effort into acquiring her powers. This makes them very human and relatable. The novel has an eclectic characterization that fits exactly into the world-building. There is a natural diversity that works—something that is difficult to find in superhero movies. It has a strong plot and emotional stakes run high as the main characters fight against time to retrieve the stone. While many readers may have grown tired of the superhero theme in movies and books, Ethereals: A New World deserves to be given a chance.