Paranormalcy - Kiersten White "It wasn't like it was [the paranormals'] fault they were how they were"
Evelyn "Evie" is not what you would call a normal teenager. She works for the International Paranormal Containment Agency, seeing through glamour (a skill only she possesses) to "bag and tag" paranormals. But in her downtime, Evie dreams of a normal teenaged life, as seen in her favorite TV series, Easton Heights. Life changes when she captures a shapeshifter, Lend, and paranormals begin to die.

I Liked:
There were three primary things I loved about Paranormalcy: Evie, the paranormals, and the tone.
Evie was an excellent protagonist. She was upbeat, yet still wanted to be normal, to go to high school and to have a normal boyfriend. Sure, she sometimes back talked her superiors and Raquel, but overall, she respects authority and learns that she misses even Raquel, the closest person she had to a mother (this was quite well done). She wasn't omnipotent at all; she had one great skill, but she frequently flubbed up or showed how much of a coward she was (such as when she abandoned Jacques). I liked how little she knew about the paranormals, how she had fun in small ways (such as riding her roller chair to see Lend), and how she generally kept upbeat.
In this time of more paranormals than you know what to do with, the paranormal situation was handled adeptly here. White includes, not just vampires, not just werewolves, not just faeries, but all of them and more. And I felt she did agreat job, balancing myth with her own unique take. For instance: vampires can appear hot and young, but underneath the glamour, they are old and decayed. They can see themselves in mirrors, but their ugly appearance is shown. Alongside this, I like how White makes the paranormals sympathetic (even, to an extent, hags). She brings up how paranormals didn't have a choice--such as the young, sad Charlotte, Evie's instructor.
Lastly, we have tone. This is kinda related to Evie, but I felt it deserved its own point. White eschews the emo tone of many recent urban fantasy novels and instead keeps the novel light and humorous. Definitely a standout in my book.
I know I already said "lastly", but I had one more minor thing to bring up: Paranormalcy is written as a fairly close ended book. No cliffhanger, mysterious, open-ended conclusions for this guy. I appreciate this, as all too often, authors are throwing in these ambiguous endings to bait readers into sequels.

I Didn't Like:
While the book started out unique and interesting, by the halfway point, it was getting a little trite.
Firstly, characters. While I loved Evie and Raquel, none of the others stood out, particularly the male lead, Lend (what is up with that name anyway? Why would his father, David, give him such a weird name?). Lend was a generic hot guy; he had almost zero conflict, even if Evie was the one who threw him into captivity. He quickly falls in love with Evie and becomes the best boyfriend ever...which leads me to Reth. While I actually understood how Reth could be so different in his desires for Evie, I still found him quite the creepy stalker. I have no idea why Evie fell for him in the first place, nor, more importantly, how the adults Evie was in contact with didn't realize Reth's unhealthy obsession with Evie until it was too late. About the best thing about the Lend-Evie-Reth thing was that there was no triangle, a concept that got worn out ages ago.
Other characters--Lish, Arianna, Vivian, David--were all very bland and unmemorable.
The part I disliked the most, though, was how quickly the book dissolved into "high school drama". The story starts out interestingly enough and then Lend is caught. Things slow to a crawl as Lend and Evie tiptoe around each other's feelings and slowly (ever so slowly) we learn about the paranormal deaths. In that time, two characters die--two characters that supposedly impact Evie greatly. However, I never felt any real "pull" when those characters died. Both had barely appeared in the novel, and, again, their appearances were unmemorable. We get an exciting scene with Lend and Evie running, meeting up with Reth, and then...the novel becomes Generic Teen Soap Opera 203. Evie goes to school. Evie feels uncertain about her position in Lend's family. Evie and Lend go to a pizza parlor where a girl likes Lend--but fortunately, she quickly hops to Lend's friend (wow, what a plot contrivance to utterly rid us of any possible conflict between characters!). And then, as if we didn't foresee it coming, Evie is invited to prom. YAWN!
Perhaps if the drama had been done well, maybe focused more on paranormals (this is an urban fantasy, after all), MAYBE it wouldn't have been so bad. However, I thought it wasn't written that great, relying on stereotypes, hurried writing and lots of filler in the form of shopping escapades (oh, please!). If I wanted this, I would READ a high school drama novel!
And the ending...well, I won't go into too much detail, but it was PAINFULLY obvious that the prom would be the time of the big showdown. Which made me yawn again. Way too much yawning in this very promising book.

Dialogue/Sexual Situations/Violence:
Cr*p and d**n are about as hard as it gets; all others are filled with "bleep".
Evie and Lend make out at one point. Evie recounts Easton High characters hooking up and the like.
At least two characters die. Evie carries a taser (creatively called "Tasey") that she uses to bag and tag.

Reading the reviews about this book, I walked in pumped, ready for something a little different and didn't quite get what was promised. Sure, Evie was a great change of pace from moody, emo protagonists, but the story too quickly became generic and predictable and not even in a well-written way. By no means is it the worst I've read, but still, for a book with this much promise, with this interesting a concept, it could have delievered way more.