We just finished reading Emergence by S.G.D. Singh and we just had to post a review right away! We both got a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. We were both so happy we had each other to talk to while reading this book! It’s sad there aren’t more people reading and talking about this book. Hopefully we can change that a bit. Keep reading to find out our thoughts about this book.

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Emergence is the first book in The Infernal Guard trilogy by S.G.D. Singh. The story revolves around Asha, a seventeen-year old living in Miami. She’s home schooled, has martial arts training every day, and helps out in the kitchen of the resort she lives at with her grandpa. When her grandpa comes home injured, he sents her to India to live with family she’d never heard about before. Her best friend Lexi follows her soon after and she quickily becomes friends with her cousin Nidhan. The three of them find out about the Infernal Guard and soon start their training with 17 other teens from all over the world.

Plot

Isabelle: I enjoyed this story so much! I just couldn’t put it down and when I did have to put it down because I was working, I kept thinking about it. The story was so engaging and even though it had 491 pages and a ton of characters I flew through it. There was enough mystery throughout the story to keep my guessing about one thing or another. There were one or two clichés, but there’s hardly any book that doesn’t contain one. I would’ve liked it if the clichés weren’t there but they didn’t really bother me and didn’t take away anything from the story. The plot wasn’t super unique but the world was unique enough and the characters were great!

Candyce: I have to agree with Isabelle a lot about this book, haha. I couldn’t put it down and actually hated when I had to get off the train to head home after work. I wanted to find out what was going to happen. I wouldn’t have minded if the book was longer than 491 pages, haha. I was confused at times with all the different names, but that definitely didn’t influence the story that much. The author really knows how to describe things in a way that made me think I was actually there. Just like Isabelle a couple of the clichés this book has are seen in other stories, but it wasn’t the main thing the story focused on. The ending left me wanting a lot more!

Characters

Isabelle: The characters were probably the best thing about the whole novel. Asha was a great heroine and I loved that she wasn’t the best fighter or the best singer (they sing a ton!) of the bunch. She was quite relatable, a really nice person and although she was a bit stubborn (she is a teenager after all) she was definitely willing to learn. Most relationships were well developed in this book and I loved reading about them. The relationship between Asha and her love interest was a bit cliché but I still enjoyed it. I adored Lexi and Nidhan and love their banter. They were both great characters. Apart from these main character there were a ton of sidecharacters! I must admit I got a bit confused every now and then, sometimes I didn’t even know if someone was male or female haha. But this was mostly because of all the (to me at least) exotic names. I loved that all names had a meaning too and this was ethnically speaking probably the most diverse cast I’ve ever read about. I really enjoyed it and what I liked most is how natural it felt. Lately there have been a lot of discussions about diversity and while I agree we need more diverse books, I can’t stand books where characters are diverse just to be diverse and have them included. I absolutely loved the diversity here and thought it was done beautifully. Tying in with this is also the setting, most novels take place in the USA, some in Europe but hardly any in Asia. But more about that down here!

Candyce: Just like Isabelle has already mentioned this book has a great set of characters. They all fit perfectly together and it just seems right. Asha grows into her part and accepts it pretty well seeing the circumstances everything starts in. I’d say she accepts everything pretty well. I love her instant connection with Nidhan and I was very pleased that he wasn’t her love interest, but turned into a brother to her. I love how they bonded. Nidhan is a pretty responsible teenager and cares for his family. He happily accepts Asha in the family and their new adventure. Lexi comes in the story and was one of my favorites. Her family has money and she basically has everything she wants, but she’s not a typical rich girl and she trains hard to do what she does. She is very protective of her friends and will do anything they need her to. Just like Isabelle I loved the banter between Lexi and Nidhan. It was hilarious! Aquila was an interesting character to me as well. He is rather mysterious still though and I hope we learn more about him in the second book. Just like Isabelle I was a bit overwhelmed with all the characters at times, but their names were beautiful and they all added something to the story.

World building

Isabelle: there was a lot of detail in the book and the world felt super realistic to me. I loved that Hindu mythology was used in the story. I didn’t know much about it but that was okay, enough was explained for me to understand it without it being an infodump. I visited India last year so I had some pictures in my head of Indian places but even if I hadn’t I think the world was still very clearly described. Most of the story took place in headquarters  and at Nidhans familyhome. There were some interesting creatures from the underworlds and they were well developed. I absolutely loved that part, as well as all the shapeshifters! They were so awesome and well described. Asha had a lot to learn during training but I’m happy the author didn’t use those instances for infodumps, the info we got was incorporated really well and none of it was unnecessary. All in all I was very happy with the world building, I mentioned the diversity above and this setting made the book stand out from all the USA and Europe based books I’ve read.

Candyce: The world she created is amazing and so detailed! It’s been awhile since I read something with a world that was created so well. It all fit together so well and as I said before I felt like I was with the characters while I was reading. Like Isabelle I don’t know much about the Hindu mythology, but it was so interesting. It makes me want to find out more! We finally got a different setting than the states and that was a nice change. India isn’t a country I have seen a lot in the books I have read. The story mostly was at the Headquarters, but even that was described in a really good way. I could picture it perfectly. This author definitely has a way with words. I have to agree with Isabelle that it was nice to read a book with a lot of diversity, but it wasn’t forced. This book and world was so natural. I also loved that the paranormal creatures were described and you learned about them with the characters.

recensie 4,5 kroontjes

All in all this was an amazing book. The world, characters and plot go really well together. This is a book that needs more attention, because this author and book deserve to be read by more people. We are very lucky to also get the chance to both read the second book in this series. So you can expect a review of the second one in the near future. Does this book seem interesting to you? Is it something you would read?

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