Review: Becoming Alpha by Aileen Erin


About the book:

Tessa McCaide has a unique talent for getting into trouble. Then again, it isn’t easy for a girl with visions to ignore what she sees. Luckily Tessa and her family are leaving California and moving halfway across the country, giving her the perfect opportunity to leave her reputation as “Freaky Tessa” behind.

But Tessa doesn’t realize that kissing the wrong guy in her new Texas town could land her in far more trouble than she ever imagined. Like being forced to attend St. Ailbe’s Academy, a secret boarding school for werewolves.

Even if the wrong guy did accidentally turn her into one of “them” and doom her to attending the weirdest high school ever, Tessa can’t help her growing attraction to the mysterious Dastien Laurent.

When vampires attack St. Alibe’s and her visions pinpoint an enemy in their midst, Tessa realizes that boy drama and her newfound canine tendencies might just be the least of her problems.

Cover of Aileen Erin's Becoming Alpha

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Review by Katy Haye:

Not a glowing review, for once. But I’m pushing to meet my deadlines and I didn’t have time to read another book and post a review, so here’s my warts-and-all assessment of Becoming Alpha.

At one point this was a DNF, largely because I found our heroine, Tessa, incredibly irritating. Okay, so she’s been thrown into a strange new world (although she knows strange things can and do happen because she sees visions when she touches people), but she seemed to take pride in her ignorance and incompetence, refusing to read more about werewolves to find out about her new world and new self, and then throwing herself into danger and making everyone else run to her rescue.

Whenever she discovered anything new, or was asked to face her werewolf abilities, her thought processes went: “I need to get the hang of this, I’ll give it my best shot – Oh, it’s too hard, no way can I do this.” And then, of course, she was off-the-scale brilliant at everything she tried. Yawn.

There was a definite tendency towards stereotype: all the boys were “so hot” (and, natch, they all lusted after Tessa and literally fought over her at one point – barf), while the girls were split between allies and bitches.

I found her relationship with Dastian pretty toxic, too (even setting aside the fact he’s given her an incurable supernatural disease that’s forced her to leave “normal” life behind). I understand the appeal of a bad boy (vaguely), but he was needlessly confusing and had mood swings that probably needed a medical diagnosis, while Tessa was clingy, insecure and stupid around him – what a catch!

However, when I picked the book back up and persisted, the world behind it all was interesting and engaging, and the finale was full of drama, while the relationship between Tessa and the school’s uber-bitch took a nice twist and headed into positive territory.

Overall, it was a massive miss for me, but if you love Bella Swan heroines and moody, inexplicable heroes this might be just your cup of tea.

Katy Haye is short of time to read because she’s scrambling to meet deadlines and get her new series completed. Check out the first book in her new YA fantasy series, Awakened by Magic.


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