Author: Jayde Scott
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Romance Paranormal
Publisher: Scotland (self-published)
Synopsis/Summary: The moment Amber starts her summer job in Scotland and sets eyes upon Aidan, her fate is sealed. Summoned by an ancient bond, she can never love another. Lost in the woods one night Amber enters Aidan's deadly world when she unknowingly participates in a paranormal race and promptly wins the first prize...a prize worth killing for.
In a world of forbidden love, ancient enemies, legends and rituals, nothing is as it seems and no one can be trusted. Life will never be the same again, unless she enters the Otherworld. But to do so, Amber must die...
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Holy cow I love this book! The plot wasn't exactly very original, however, the story flowed fast and I really enjoyed Jayde's writing.
As for something that I hated about the plot... Well, I actually felt that the book started to drag when all of the characters were gathered together, there were so many conversions and distractions going on that it was kind of confusing. I love watching Amber and Adian deal with different characters, but not with all of them on the same time! I was lost reading the countless dialogues and wasn't really sure where the plot was going. Luckily, this only happened in a few chapters. Also, I found that Jatde's writing at the beginning of the story was actually more enjoyable than during the later part of the book. I don't know how this happened, wasn't things supposed to be better rather than worse? Jayde started pouring many jokes in the later part of the story, while some did actually manage to crack me up, some were confusing. I don't mind a few jokes, but sometimes when I was reading dialogues and jokes kept popping up, it actually derails the story and after some time, appears to be boring and excessive. Another problem I had with the plot, was the ending. It was... Weird, several characters that rarely appeared in the story suddenly popped up towards the end, giving readers a final twist, and they way that Jayde saved the main characters from this twist was unexpected, but not in a good way. That solution appears to be too random and awkward and left me thinking, "How convenient that things managed to happen just at the right time. It was genius. Yeah, Not."
I also found that there were a lot of scary mansions in self-published works, whilst I haven't seen the setting on publisher-published works (okay, Anna dressed in Blood should count as one). I don't really mind reading about scary mansions, but of all three of the self-published works I am currently reading are set in scary mansions? That's just weird! Well, I guess that's not exactly the author's fault, I just think they should go different ways other than scary mansions and vampires.
Which brought me back to the paranormal aspect of the book. The paranormal aspect were actually what crafted the story, unlike the recent books that I read (Envy, Touch series), where paranormal just sort of felt like a device to attract readers, I could almost imagine what those books would be like without the paranormal features. I enjoyed the paranormal in this book, but I couldn't help but cringe when I found out that vampires were involved, again. I haven't read the blurb before reading the book and the blurb actually didn't prepare me for another vampire story, I did enjoy this one though, apparently vampires don't always kill-joy. (I, however, don't enjoy other vampire series like HoN very much, and I haven't read the Twilight Saga OR the Vampire Academy series, so you could see I am not exactly the biggest vampire fan.)
I really liked the characters of this book, all except Layla, which I think many people would share my hate once they read the book (go read it!)
Amber was an very average protagonist, she wasn't overly confident with herself, she was brave when needed to be and naturally curious. I didn't expect her to be the snarky kind though. She started cracking a LOT of jokes starting from the middle of the book. That's problem I was talking about with many jokes popping up in the later part of the story. We already have one snarky character, we don't need another one and Amber's sudden humor actually confused me, she wasn't that funny in the beginning, what changed? I think Jayde should develop Amber more thoroughly before starting to write, instead of adding a new personality to her in the middle of the book. It's weird. I don't hate Amber though, and there weren't times that I want to smack her head which was a very rare situation lately (I seemed to be reading a lot of crappy books lately and it really frustrates me. Some characters irritated me to the point that I wanted to smack his/her head. Ugh!). Amber wasn't without flaws though, actually her biggest flaw was her commitment issue. She couldn't commit herself to potential friends, let alone a guy, she had a hard time trusting people what with the things going on around her and a heartbreak. That changed throughout the book and I really loved the trust that she slowly developed with the characters. I do hope she was more friendly to some characters though. Oh well, I am satisfied.
As for Aidan, he was hopelessly in love with Amber. But truth be told, I don't really like their romance that much. Sure, I was excited when they first kissed, but after that their relationship just didn't appeal to me anymore, I don't know why. Aidan was a the mopey type, and I was shocked that I didn't hate him as much as I hate Ben from the Touch series (While I don't exactly have any bias towards the mopey type, they usually end up irritating me), maybe it was because of what he did for Amber, I don't know, I usually just go with my instincts with characters. So, my feeling to the guy is neutral, I do think he needs to treat his friends better though. From what I gathered, he didn't have a lot of friends and I think he really need to treasure the few that he had.
I like Cass, and I also love Kieran a lot. What can I say? I am a sucker for funny guys. And like I said, I need only one snarky character and that's Kieran. So Amber, stop trying to be funny! That's Kieran's job!
I would give this book 4 stars and I am now starting to really appreciate the self-published world. The settings might not be the most original but at least there was no confusion on the world-building. The plot was intricately woven with interesting and likable characters and I am very glad I stumbled upon this book when it was free on Amazon. I recommend this book to all of you paranormal fans out there. The setting might disappoint a little but the story does not! Have fan reading!
|Rating: 4 stars!|