Maya is a 17 year old girl who lives in a very small town of less than 200 people. The town is called Salmon Creek. The town is actually a research facility town. The school that Maya attends only has a total of 68 students. Ranging from kindergarten through 12th grade. The town does not have malls, bed and breakfast or even a hotel. Salmon Creek only has six streets. The downtown area has only three shops. The grocery store carries the normal stuff, but nothing more exotic than white mushrooms and dried herbs. The hardware store carries all the usual stuff, but if you want something unusual than they have to order it from the city. The only other place in town is the only restaurant in town called the Blender. To really actually do anything you have to go to a town that is an hour away.
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As far as the research facility, it looks like any other old two story building. You do have the option of walking in, but that is about as far as your going to get. The doors have a key card lock and some even have access codes also. Almost everyone that lives in Salmon Creek works at the facility. Except for Maya's parents. Maya's dad is actually the park warden.
When Maya has her 17th birthday, her mom decides to take her to go get the tattoo she has been asking to get. The tattoo that Maya wants to get is basically an outline of her birthmark. Her birthmark is on her hip and it is the shape of a paw print. But while Maya is at the tattoo shop, the tattoo artists aunt sees the birthmark and says that she is a yee naalooshii, which means that Maya is a skin walker. A skin walker is a Navajo witch that is evil and cast curses and changes into animal forms.
Later after the tattoo artist incident, Maya has her birthday party with friends. Rafe, the new kid in town actually sits down to talk to her and her drink ends up getting spiked. Everyone but Maya thinks that Rafe did it. Maya notices that she is actually falling for Rafe, even though she really doesn't want to. There is just something that pulls her to him. But she starts to notice that the animals she takes care of are healing faster than what they should be. Then one day when she is checking on an animal that she rescued, she forgets to glove her hand and touches the animal and has flashes of memories of how the animal ended up hurt.
After a while Maya finds out that Rafe has a sister named Annie. Who seems brain damaged. Only to learn that Annie is a skin walker who has the same birthmark and shifts into a bob cat. Then Maya finds out that Rafe has the same birthmark. Only to learn that after a while all skin walkers will eventually transition into their animal forms. More than they would actually like to, its only a matter of time before even she does. After she confronts Rafe about it she finds out that the research facility is actually hiding a failed project called Project Genesis. She doesn't know what the project was about, but she has a feeling it has to do with bring back the gene of the skin walkers.
But with all that going on, Maya has completely forgotten about the forest fires that have been happening a lot lately. Only to realize as the fire is almost near the town that the fires have been set on purpose. But before the fire hits, Maya finds out that Mina Lee, who out of no where has shown up in town is actually not the reporter everyone thought she was. Also that Mina is not even the woman's real name. But she ends up dead without any warning or even a hint as to why. But Maya finds out that Mina seemed to be working with another corporation of some sort before she died.
As Maya is being air lifted out of the town, because it is being engulfed in flames she decides that it is time to leave that life behind.
Best part of story, including ending:
I liked that she really cared about all animals. What I did not like was that she held grudges, even though she was actually not aware she did it until it was pointed out to her.
Best scene in story:
My favorite scene is when Maya and Rafe are in the forest running and having a good time, then a bob cat shows up and growls at Rafe, but drops his dinner in front of Maya, as a sign of some sort and walks off.
Opinion about the main character:
The one thing that I disliked about the main character is that she almost seemed like she was playing her best friend Daniel, while going after Rafe. Even though that was not her intention.