Seeking Crystal is the third book in the Benedicts series by Joss Stirling. It was published by Oxford University Press on 4th October and the book is 258 pages long.
Synopsis (Taken from Goodreads.com)
Crystal Brook has always been the dud Savant in her family; paranormal powers just aren't her thing. Dropping out of school with a clutch of 'E' grades and no future, she lives in the shadow of her high-flying sister Diamond. On a trip to Denver, a chance encounter with the dashing Benedict brothers leaves Diamond head over heels in love and engaged to be married. Crystal, on the other hand, is unimpressed by their charms . . . in fact no boy can annoy her as much as Xav Benedict! Back in Venice, their families assemble for Diamond's wedding and a powerful enemy seizes the opportunity to attack. Crystal and Xav must join forces to save their loved-ones, unlocking a secret that, until now, has lain deeply buried . . .
What I thought
Since the first book in this series, I have been in love with Joss Stirling’s writing and the world that she created. A big thanks to Jesse (from http://www.books4teens.co.uk) for sending me this book as he knew how desperate I was to read it.
The setting for this book is very different from the others in the series. Crystal and her sister Diamond head to Denver for a very quick trip but there, Diamond manages to meet her Soulfinder. This is a massive deal for all Savants, which Crystal and Diamond both are and it sets the scene for the rest of the book. Although this book is about Crystal, Diamond finding her other half means heading back to Venice, where they live so that a wedding can be planned. I really liked that Denver was included, if only for a little bit, as the setting had been such a big part of the other books. However, I loved that Stirling took the characters to Venice too because it was magical.
I really liked Crystal as a main character. She comes from a large family, is the seventh child and thinks that her Savant abilities are faulty. She cannot do telepathy with anyone as it makes her physically sick and her actual ability is to find things… like lost keys. Not quite as impressive as being able to make fire with your hands or being able to heal someone is it? Crystal had a great voice and even though she was down some of the time, she was still quite outspoken and funny. I really liked her narrative voice and it made reading the book exciting and very entertaining.
I know some people have said that they didn’t like Xav too much in this book but I loved him. He is a great match for Crystal as he is just as outspoken and funny. He stands out in comparison to his brothers due to his charm (in its own strange way) and the way he speaks to people, especially Crystal. He has great nicknames for her such as Cupcake, which she hated which made it even funnier. I really enjoyed reading about Xav and watching his relationship with Crystal develop.
Crystal and Xav’s relationship is different from the others in this series due to it not being love at first sight. To begin with, Crystal cannot stand the sight of Xav and when they are forced together because of the wedding, Crystal cannot think of anything worse than being stuck with him. The banter between the two characters was part of what made them both so likeable. Each gave as good as it gets and it was great to see them both getting annoyed with each other.
The plot was also one of the best in the series so far for me too. Stirling brings together new plot aspects mixed in with things that happened in previous books which was a good way to tie everything together. There are quite a lot of shocking things which happen in this book and I wasn’t expecting a lot of them. Crystal’s Savant ability takes up a large part of this book but it was woven in with everything else, taking some of the attention off of her and bringing in all of the other characters. If you thought Stealing Phoenix was exciting then you will be blown away by Seeking Crystal. This book has the excitement of an action film and things happening all over the place.
Seeking Crystal is by far my favourite in this series so far because it had everything I could possibly want! Joss Stirling can do no wrong in my eyes!