Summary from Goodreads: How hard do you have to shake a family tree to find out the truth of the past?
Fifteen-year-old Rae Kerrigan has never questioned her family’s history. That is until she accepted a scholarship to Guilder Boarding School in England. Guilder is a very unique, gifted school.
Rae has no idea what she is getting herself into or that her family’s past is going to come back and taunt her. She learns she is part of an unparalleled group of individuals who become marked with a unique tattoo (tatù) on their sixteenth birthday. The tatù enables them to have supernatural powers particular to the shape of their marking.
Both her parents were marked though Rae never knew, as they passed away when she was young and never told her. Learning about her family’s past, her evil father and sacrificial mother, Rae needs to decide if there is a ray of hope for her own life.
“You can’t undo the past: The sins of the father are the sins of the son, or in this case, daughter.”
First of all poor girl! Rae’s parents died when she was very young. All she knows is that there was a fire and she survived. Since that horrible day she has lived with her uncle. Her uncle moved her to the United States (New York to be exact) right after she moved in with him so it has been years since she has been to Britain. When she gets an acceptance letter to Guilder Boarding School in England her uncle can’t send her off fast enough. Rae hasn’t even heard of this school and she can’t understand why he would want her to go after he was the one that wanted to leave and go to New York. Switching schools can be a hard transition and Rae soon finds she has more to deal with than any other average new girl.
“Molly stared Rae up and down.”You’re Rae Kerrigan? I pictured someone totally different You’re not scary at all!”
Rae has no idea what she is walking into. She is in a new place, her uncle never told her anything before leaving (which I have to say was really shitty on his part), and the students of the school know more about her past than she does. Guilder isn’t a normal boarding school. It’s students will have or already have powers that begin to emerge and grow starting on their sixteenth birthday. Once they turn sixteen a tatu shows up inside their arm (boys) and on their lower back (girls). Rae doesn’t know any of this and although this surprises her roommate Molly it also gets Molly to start filling in the blanks for both Rae and the reader. I liked that I got to learn about everything just as Rae was learning. Also, with this introduction into the tatu’s and the school you get to know some of the secondary characters.
Molly was great, always full of energy and talking about something (either about getting her tatu or boys). She ended up being a good friend to Rae. The second I met Devon I knew he was going to be the love interest in this story. Their first meeting was really cute but throughout the story I just felt like he was a big stick in the mud and I wished she didn’t like him so much. He was nice guy, he was honest, and of course good looking but was a tad boring (yawn). I do have to admit they had a couple cute moments though, moments that made me go awww… Rae had quite a few guys to choose from though and if it was me I would have preferred either Julian or Riley. All the guys in this book were big flirts. It was the first year that Guilder allowed girls into the school so it was bound to happen. Oh and to make things worse people with tatu’s are not supposed to be together (makes a lot of sense that they would decide to put hormone ridden adolescents together after all, right? Not the best thinking on the schools part).
This rule brings me to one of the most important parts of this story, Rae’s parents, her past, and the source of all of what Rae goes through while at Guilder. Rae’s parents both had tatu’s (gasp! lol) and because of this the school wants to keep a close eye on Rae. This is the first time this happens and the fact that her father wasn’t a great guy puts a lot of the tatu community on edge. People distrust Rae. They fear her and some even want her gone. People whispered behind her back, she got dirty looks, and even an anonymous letter telling her to leave. I felt like this was really messed up and unwarranted. Rae knew nothing of her past and she was just a teenage girl she didn’t deserve to be treated that way. I am glad she had friends to be there for her.
Rae was great to read about. She said what she thought (most of the time) and she was funny even with everything going on in her life. I liked reading about the tatu’s the most. Each character had different abilities and it would be awesome to have them all. When Rae gets her tatu it is unlike anybody else’s and it sounds pretty amazing. This first book in the series was all about Rae finding out who she is and coming into her new tatu. She learned a lot and uncovered many things from her past but I am sure there is still much more hidden just waiting to be unburied. I look forward to reading the next one when it comes out.
Another big plus was that once I finished the book there was a playist at the end! Yay! If you didn’t already know I love music 🙂 It has some pretty great songs so I put it together to share with you!
*Missing tracks couldn’t find on Playlist.com are Weight of Time by Rise Against, Country Song by Seether, Shake Your Tail Feather by Nelly, P.Diddy, and Murphy Lee, and Blank Sheet of Paper by Tim McGraw.