Ceruleans Anniversary Party & Giveaway!

FMN teaser 1Hey ladies and gentlemen of blogland! I have a treat for you today! This month, Charlotte Wilson (formerly writing under Megan Tayte) is holding an anniversary party & giveaway for her YA Fantasy series, Ceruleans—and I’m here to share it with you! I’ve been a fan of the Cerulean series since the first book came out and I was given an ARC to read and review. Since then, I’ve followed the series and the author, and she’s been generous enough to share her books with me. If you’d like to read my reviews of the series, check out the links below! (Note: I haven’t finished the fifth book, Darkly,Deeply,Beautifully yet).

A Little About The Author…

Charlotte Wilson

Once upon a time a little girl told her grandmother that when she grew up she wanted to be a writer. Or a lollipop lady. Or a fairy princess. ‘Write, Charlotte,’ her grandmother advised. So that’s what she did.

Thirty-odd years later, Charlotte is a professional writer. For authors and publishers, she writes and edits books as The Book Specialist. For herself, she writes soulful, coming-of-age romance for young adults.

Charlotte grew up in the Royal County, a hop, skip and a (very long) jump from Windsor Castle, but these days she makes her home in a village of Greater Manchester with her husband and two children. When she’s not reading or writing, you’ll find her walking someplace green, baking up a storm, or embarking on a DIY project. She recently achieved a lifetime ambition of creating a library in her home to house her ever-increasing collection of books. She pretends not to notice that the shelves are rather wonky.

You can find Charlotte online at:

Interested in buying the books? Check them out here:

Ceruleans poster

Before we get to the giveaway, check out this exclusive short story, Anniversary:

The cake was homemade. Lopsided. Slathered in gloopy frosting. Judging by Adam’s previous attempts in the kitchen, it was safe to assume it would be inedible.

Estelle loved it.

‘You baked? For me?’

She reached over and pulled Adam into a hug, awkward with the massive baby bump wedged between them.

‘Happy anniversary!’ he said.

Estelle pulled back, frowning. ‘That’s tomorrow.’

A year since she had Become a Cerulean. A year since she had died.

‘I know,’ said Adam. ‘But I have a surprise for you. A… gift. And I wasn’t sure how you’d take it, so I thought: give it to you today, and if you… well, if it’s not what you want, then it hasn’t spoiled tomorrow.’ He smiled at her – nervously.

‘O-kay,’ said Estelle. She couldn’t fathom what gift she could potentially dislike that much. Unless he’d bought her something girlie. She didn’t do girlie.

‘Good,’ said Adam. He grabbed her hands. ‘Ready?’

She’d barely begun to nod when it happened… the picnic blanket, the beach, the ocean, all gone, replaced, in the bewildering blink of an eye, by a grimy urban alleyway.

What came next was not pretty. Estelle hadn’t been that sick since her first trimester.

‘Are you insane?’ she hissed eventually, when she was done and could get a word in edgeways between Adam’s apologies and panicked are-you-okay-is-the-baby-okays. ‘You Travelled us to…’ She looked about and recognition made her jaw drop. ‘No,’ she said. ‘Truro?’

White-faced, Adam nodded. He didn’t say anything; he just pointed at a shopfront visible at the top of the alley. The sign was so weathered it was unreadable. That didn’t matter; Estelle knew exactly what it said: Tattoo Tony’s.

Furious, she rounded on Adam. ‘You’d better start explaining right now.’

‘The nightmares you’ve been having about… him. I couldn’t do nothing. It’s not right, Estelle, that he’s living his life here. Unpunished. So…’ He held out his hands. Ethereal blue light lit the alley.

‘Quit it!’ Estelle slapped his hands, hard. ‘Adam…’ She stared at the one person she loved, who’d given her a home and a purpose – to whom she’d confided her deepest, most painful secret: that when she was nine, the year before her mother ODed, a man named Tattoo Tony had abused her.

Adam stared right back at her, and there was a spark in his eyes she’d never seen before. ‘What’s the point of having power over life and death,’ he said, ‘if you can’t use it to take out a bad guy? One touch, Estelle. That’s all it would take.’

No! she should have yelled. No, Adam, that’s sacrilegious, against everything the Ceruleans stand for. But the words wouldn’t come.

She looked up the alley again, at the shop. She lay a hand on her swollen belly. Then she reached out and took Adam’s hand, and they walked toward the street.

They would have looked an odd couple – he the picture boy for geek chic, her Gothed out from head to foot – had they been visible. They weren’t, though, thanks to Adam’s power. They could walk right across that street, into the tattoo parlour and kill a man, and no one would ever know it was them.

At the door to the shop, which was propped open, Estelle pulled Adam to a stop. She could see an old man inside. He was gaunt and stooped, and his breath was coming in wheezy pants.

‘Do you feel it?’ she murmured to Adam.

‘Yes,’ he said. ‘Lung cancer, I think.’

‘How long does he have?’

‘Months, if that.’

Estelle thought carefully before asking the next question: ‘Do you feel the pull? Are you meant to heal him?’

She saw Adam shake his head. No. This man was destined to die. Slowly. Painfully.

Suddenly, she realised that she could see Adam; he was no longer shielding them from view. That’s how well he knew her. There would be no wicked deed here today, no Falling from grace. Only justice of the karmic kind.

‘God I love you,’ she said, and she pressed her lips to his.

‘Er… can I help you?’ Tony had come to the door and was frowning at the couple kissing on his doorstep.

Estelle and Adam broke off, but they didn’t even look at the man beside them.

‘Take me home,’ Estelle told Adam… and he did.

They stayed on the beach for the rest of the day, lying in the sun, paddling in the surf. When the sun set there wasn’t a crumb left of that cake. It was dry. It was salty. It was crunchy with egg shell. But it was the most delicious thing either of them had ever eaten.

And now for the Giveaway!

>>>>> CLICK HERE FOR THE GIVEAWAY (because WordPress hates scripts). <<<<<

Cover Reveal : Darkly Deeply Beautifully

Darkly Deeply Beautifully cover

Darkly Deeply Beautifully by Megan Tayte

BLURB: With her mother’s life hanging in the balance, Scarlett is devastated—and done with being in the dark. She wants answers, all of them.

But when was her pursuit of the truth ever straightforward?

Pulling a single thread triggers a great unraveling. And each revelation will force Scarlett to rethink what she thought she knew about the Ceruleans, the Fallen, her family—herself.

All that came before was a mere prelude to this, the last journey. From London to Twycombe to Hollythwaite to Cerulea, Scarlett will be stalked by the ghosts of what has been, what may have been and what may come to pass. Until she reaches the place where it all began, and it all must end.

But in the final reckoning, none will survive unscathed. And some will not survive at all. In this explosive conclusion to the Ceruleans series, all must be defined by their actions: sinner, saint… or something more beautiful entirely?

The Ceruleans series poster

Publication Date: February 16, 2016

[PREORDER on AMAZON] [PREORDER on AMAZON.CO.UK]

I am so happy to announce that Darkly Deeply Beautifully, the fifth book in the Ceruleans series by Megan Tayte will be releasing February 16, 2016. I’m also excited to show of it’s gorgeous cover. I’ve been privileged to read this series since the very first book came out, and I am beyond thankful to be able to read yet another of the series in the upcoming months. I adore Megan Tayte as an author, and I’ve enjoyed all the books so far. I hope you’re all as excited as I am! If you haven’t read the series before and you enjoy YA fantasy with a bit of romance thrown in, I highly recommend you check it out. The books haven’t always been what I’ve expected, but they’ve all been great books—sometimes in very new and entertaining ways. If you’re interested in learning more about the series, I recommend you take a look at my past reviews for the series—they can all be found in the Reviewed & Rated section of this blog.

Devil and The Deep – Release Day Party + Giveaway!

Ceruleans series poster

It’s an exciting day today here at Author Unpublished! Earlier this month I was given a chance to take part in the Devil and The Deep Release Day Party + Giveaway, and I was more than happy to jump in and participate. The Ceruleans series by Megan Tayte is one of my recent favorite series. I’ve read through the first three books already (Death Wish, Forget Me Not, WIld Blue Yonder) and gave them all 5 star reviews.

Btw, Books 1, 2, and 3 are FREE today for the Release Day Party (September 30)! So go check them out! Go! Go!

free-1free-2free-3

Devil and the Deep coverDevil And The Deep by Megan Tayte, Ceruleans Book 4

STORM CLOUDS ARE GATHERING, AND THEY WILL RAIN BLOOD.

Scarlett is living her happy-ever-after, back in the real world. Only the ‘happy’ part is proving problematic.

For starters, there’s the isolation. Being a Cerulean among humans is fraught with risk, so her time with people can only be fleeting. Which means being with Luke but not being with Luke.

Then there’s her Cerulean light, her power over life and death. Less awesome talent, as it turns out, and more overwhelming responsibility. And it comes with rules – rules that are increasingly difficult to obey.

But what’s really pushing Scarlett to the precipice is something much bigger than herself, than her life in the cove. A force to be reckoned with:

Blood.

When long-buried truths are exposed, will Scarlett keep her head above water – or will she drown in the blood-dimmed tide that is unleashed?

[Buy it on Amazon.com] [Buy it Amazon.co.uk]

EXCERPT

It began with screaming. Shrill, ear-piercing, horrified screaming.

A girl shrieked, ‘Blood! Look, look – it’s everywhere!’ and pressed her hand to her mouth.

A man shouted, ‘Good grief!’ and another, ‘Great Scott!’

An old lady swooned gracefully and would have tipped over the balustrade of the riverboat had a lanky lad not caught her.

The cause of the excitement – a woman lying slumped on the long table on deck, cheek on her bread plate, headdress in the butter dish – twitched a little.

‘She’s alive!’ cried a lad beside her delightedly. ‘She moved!’

‘Did not,’ argued another.

‘Did too!’

‘Gentlemen,’ interjected a short, portly man with a twirly black moustache, ‘if you will forgive my intrusion, it must be noted that this woman has a bullet hole in her head and is logically, therefore, quite definitely deceased.’

Another old dear folded to the deck with a prolonged ‘Ohhhhhh’ and her husband grabbed a feathered fan and began wafting cool evening air in her face while calling, ‘Smelling salts – does anyone have any?’

I tried to keep a straight face. Really I did. I bit my bottom lip until I tasted my cherry-red lipstick. I pinched my leg through the cream satin of my gown. I dug my long cigarette holder into the sensitive flesh of my arm.

But it was no good.

The ‘What ho, chaps’ posh accents.

The buxom woman sagging in the arms of an elephant hunter wearing Converse All Stars.

The production of smelling salts in a bottle whose label read Pepto-Bismol.

The corners of the little round man’s moustache coming looser with his every word.

The fast-pooling puddle of pinkish blood on the bread plate, buffeted by the steady in-and-out breaths of the corpse.

Take it from a girl who’s really died – death on the River Dart, Devon, is hilarious.

‘Dear me, Ms Robson here appears to be quite overcome with shock,’ said the guy at my side suddenly, and he slipped an arm around me and turned me away. ‘Come, madam. Let us get some air.’

I smiled at him. Then grinned. Then choked back a guffaw. Thankfully, by the time full-scale hilarity hit me I’d been led to the rear of the boat, away from the rest of our party, and could bury my face in the bloke’s chest and shake mutely with laughter.

The gallant gentleman rubbed my back soothingly as I let it all out and said loudly, for the benefit of any onlookers, ‘There there, pignsey, there there.’

‘Pigsney?’ It was the final straw. My high-heeled sandals gave way and I melted into a puddle of mirth on the deck.

‘I’ll have you know, Scarlett Blake,’ hissed Luke, my boyfriend a.k.a. gallant gent, hoiking up his too-tight corduroy trousers so he could squat down beside me, ‘I Googled “old-fashioned terms of endearment” and pigsney’s a classic.’

I wiped tears from my eyes, dislodging a false eyelash in the process, and tried to catch my hiccupping breath as Luke went on.

‘Means pig’s eye. No idea why that’s appealing, but apparently in the seventeenth century, calling a lady pigsney was the very height of courting.’

Through his fake specs Luke’s blue eyes fixed me with a stare so earnest I almost managed to stop laughing.

‘But this is a Death on the Nile-Stroke-Dart murder mystery night, Luke,’ I managed to get out. ‘Set in the nineteen thirties, not the seventeen thirties.’

‘Ah,’ he said, ‘but my character tonight, Mr Fijawaddle, is a historical fiction writer, isn’t he? So as well as dressing like a brainy recluse – and I’m warning you now, I won’t hear another slur against this tweed jacket – he’d know all kinds of obscure terms. Like ginglyform and jargogle and nudiustertian and bromopnea and farctate and quagswag and philosophunculist.’

His showing off sobered me just enough to control the giggles. ‘You made those words up,’ I accused, poking a crimson talon into his mustard-yellow shirtfront.

He blinked at me innocently. ‘Did not. I told you before we left the house, I did my homework.’

I narrowed my eyes. ‘All right then, Mr Fijawaddle, what does that last word you said mean?’

‘Philosophunculist?’

‘Yes, that.’

‘Er…’ Luke gave me a sheepish grin.

‘Spill it,’ I said menacingly. As menacingly as a girl dressed up as a vintage Hollywood starlet with cute little pin curls and rouge aplenty can be, that is.

‘Philosophunculist,’ recited Luke. ‘Noun. A person who pretends to know more than they do in order to impress others.’

I threw my head back and laughed. ‘Busted!’

Luke slipped an arm around me and pulled me close. Really close.

‘Bet you like it when I use long words,’ he said huskily, eyes fixed on my too-red lips.

‘Bet you like it when I wear a clingy nightgown as a dress,’ I replied, eyes fixed on his too-kissable lips.

‘Brazen hussy,’ he growled at me.

‘Randy boffin,’ I murmured back.

Then neither of us said another word for quite some time.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Megan Tayte

Once upon a time a little girl told her grandmother that when she grew up she wanted to be a writer. Or a lollipop lady. Or a fairy princess fireman. ‘Write, Megan,’ her grandmother advised. So that’s what she did.
Thirty-odd years later, Megan is a professional writer and published author by day, and an indie novelist by night. Her fiction – young adult romance with soul – recently earned her the SPR’s Independent Woman Author of the Year award.
Megan grew up in the Royal County, a hop, skip and a (very long) jump from Windsor Castle, but these days she makes her home in Robin Hood’s county, Nottinghamshire. She lives with her husband, a proud Scot who occasionally kicks back in a kilt; her son, a budding artist with the soul of a palaeontologist; and her baby daughter, a keen pan-and-spoon drummer who sings in her sleep. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her walking someplace green, reading by the fire, or creating carnage in the kitchen as she pursues her impossible dream: of baking something edible.
You can find Megan online at:

http://megantayte.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13478850.Megan_Tayte
https://www.facebook.com/megantayte
https://twitter.com/megantayte
https://plus.google.com/+MeganTayte

GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Review

[Originally Posted Here]

I’m still in a little conflict over how I feel about Devil and the Deep by Megan Tayte. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the book… but it wasn’t my favorite out of the series. The front half of the book felt a little slow to me. Not a lot happened. I read the book 20% at a time, and I didn’t feel like I was itching to get back into the book each time I put it down… If I’d put down the book halfway through, I would have shrugged and moved on—but, I am glad that I continued to read because the second half of the book was much better.

Technically speaking, the book was well written. The pacing was steady, the writing was fluid and easy to follow. I ran into a few minor typos, but nothing that distracted me from the text, or would have made me put the book down. Once again, I loved all the characters…. even Evangeline. It was a solid addition to the series as a whole up until this point. But, like I said, the first half of the book just didn’t engage me like I’d expected.

The ending was great. There was drama and chaos and lines were being crossed, and I was engrossed. When that last line hit, I bemoaned the end of the story. I wanted more.

Overall, I really liked the book. Was it the best book in the series? For me, no. Was it enjoyable? Definitely. Would I recommend it? Yes. If you’ve enjoyed the previous books in this series, you’ll probably enjoy this one too. I can’t wait for the fifth book!

Book Review: Devil And The Deep

review-cover-devilandthedeepTitle: Devil And The Deep [Ceruleans 4]

Author: Megan Tayte

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Rating: 4 Stars

AmazonButtonGoodreadsButton

Description/Synopsis:

Scarlett is living her happy-ever-after, back in the real world. Only the ‘happy’ part is proving problematic.

For starters, there’s the isolation. Being a Cerulean among humans is fraught with risk, so her time with people can only be fleeting. Which means being with Luke but not being with Luke.

Then there’s her Cerulean light, her power over life and death. Less awesome talent, as it turns out, and more overwhelming responsibility. And it comes with rules – rules that are increasingly difficult to obey.

But what’s really pushing Scarlett to the precipice is something much bigger than herself, than her life in the cove. A force to be reckoned with:
Blood.

When long-buried truths are exposed, will Scarlett keep her head above water – or will she drown in the blood-dimmed tide that is unleashed?

WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW

I’m still in a little conflict over how I feel about Devil and the Deep by Megan Tayte. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the book… but it wasn’t my favorite out of the series. The front half of the book felt a little slow to me. Not a lot happened. I read the book 20% at a time, and I didn’t feel like I was itching to get back into the book each time I put it down… If I’d put down the book halfway through, I would have shrugged and moved on—but, I am glad that I continued to read because the second half of the book was much better.

Technically speaking, the book was well written. The pacing was steady, the writing was fluid and easy to follow. I ran into a few minor typos, but nothing that distracted me from the text, or would have made me put the book down. Once again, I loved all the characters…. even Evangeline. It was a solid addition to the series as a whole up until this point. But, like I said, the first half of the book just didn’t engage me like I’d expected.

The ending was great. There was drama and chaos and lines were being crossed, and I was engrossed. When that last line hit, I bemoaned the end of the story. I wanted more.

Overall, I really liked the book. Was it the best book in the series? For me, no. Was it enjoyable? Definitely. Would I recommend it? Yes. If you’ve enjoyed the previous books in this series, you’ll probably enjoy this one too. I can’t wait for the fifth book!

Book Review: Wild Blue Yonder

cover-wildblueyonderTitle: Wild Blue Yonder [Ceruleans 3]

Author: Megan Tayte

Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Fantasy, Contemporary, Paranormal

Rating: 5 Stars

AmazonButton

GoodreadsButton

Description/Synopsis:

When Scarlett Blake chose life-after-death as a Cerulean, she expected to grieve for all she left behind: her boyfriend, her best friend, her mother, her home. But at least Cerulea, her heaven, would be… well, heavenly. Right?

Wrong.

The world in which Scarlett awakens is very far from her idea of a utopia. Picturesque, sure, and serene. But there can be no paradise within the unforgiving walls of a prison, be they of cold, hard stone or beautifully blue water.
Now Scarlett faces her hardest decision yet: be a good, dutiful Cerulean, or be true to herself and fight for freedom.
And if she can find a way to escape, what then? Can she finally reunite with her lost sister? Can she save Sienna from the murderous Fallen? Can she evade her destiny with the Ceruleans?

Can Scarlett Blake ever reclaim her life-before-death… or must she let go of all she loves?

WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW

It was difficult for me to choose a rating for Wild Blue Yonder by Megan Tayte. After reading the first two books in the series I was practically waiting with baited breath for the third installment—and despite the fact that I had other things to do and genuinely tried to put off reading Wild Blue Yonder, I found myself picking it up to “read one chapter” late last night. Before I knew it, I had demolished the book.

Like the previous books in the series, the writing was flawless and effortless in its execution. I didn’t stumble over awkward sentence structure, grammar, or punctuation mistakes. I was immediately drawn into the story by the characters and the mystery of the plot. Like I discovered with the second book in the series, Wild Blue Yonder was both a well pieced together addition to the previous books, and yet something completely different at the same time. The first book was all about the romance and the mystery, the second book about grief, and this book? This book was about deception, betrayal, and ultimately, truth.

The reason this book was so hard to rate came down to the uncomfortable feeling that rooted in the pit of my stomach as I read. The Ceruleans, to me, went from being this vague magical race to these terrifying cult-like people who operated on blind faith and careful deception. The story was tense, and so was I. As riveted as I was by the plot, by the end of the book that uncomfortable feeling in the pit of my stomach had grown into anger. Oh, how angry I was! At Jude, the Ceruleans, Siena… I wanted to cry right alongside Scarlett. It left me unhappy.

When the book was over, I had to take a step back. My initial thought was “I didn’t like this book” because I’m not used to walking away from a book feeling as uncomfortable and angry as I did—but the more I thought about it, the higher the rating for this book went. The thing is, I didn’t like the book—I didn’t—but I’m okay with that. What this book did was powerful. For a few hours, I was put into Scarlett’s shoes and I lived in the world of the Ceruleans. No, I didn’t like their world—but that was sort of the point. I wasn’t supposed to like their world. I was supposed to empathize with Scarlett… and I did.

As unhappy as I was with certain aspects of the book, this was a phenomenal read. I’m glad I read it, and I’m looking forward to the next book in the series—but I think I’m going to need a little while to recover. It may be time for a fluffy, HEA next. If you enjoy complex mystery-oriented YA fantasy, you need to give this series a try. The series has been exceptional so far, and I’m happy to recommend it.

Book Review: Forget Me Not

Review-Cover-Forget Me Not

Title: Forget Me Not [Ceruleans 2]

Author: Megan Tayte

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal, Contemporary, Romance

Rating: 5 Stars

AmazonButton

GoodreadsButton

Description/Synopsis:

Death is stalking Scarlett Blake. As if the encroaching darkness in her head wasn’t enough, she’s become disturbingly accident prone. Falling off a cliff isn’t ideal when all you want is as much time as possible to live, to love.

Her fate is horrifying. Unbearable. And inescapable. No one can save Scarlett from The End that’s looming. Not Jude, the Cerulean who is intent on Claiming her. Not Luke, the boy who is intent on loving her.

The clock is ticking, louder with every heartbeat. Now Scarlett must decide how best to protect the people she loves. Will she trust in Jude and the life-after-death he promises? Will she stand against the Fallen, who have her sister captive? Will she carry the burden of her death alone – every headache, every hallucination, every wrenching, aching emotion?

And when the clock falls silent, when the darkness eclipses the light, will Scarlett fight for life? Or will she have no choice but to surrender?

WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW

Forget Me Not by Megan Tayte is everything I’ve wanted in an indie published book for a long, long time. The writing was excellent; none of that ‘bordering on poetic’ stuff that makes me cringe, no awkwardly worded sentence structures or punctuation mistakes… just solid, easy-to-sink-into writing. The characters felt genuine and logical, not angsty and overly-dramatic like most YA books. Not once did I find myself scowling at a character or rolling my eyes. For a few short hours, I sunk into the world of Scarlett Blake and the journey was breathtaking.

I’ll admit, I was a little afraid going into this book. Immediately after reading the first book in the series, I was contacted by the author with a note of thanks for my review. I was excited to hear back from her and to tell her how much I enjoyed the book—and was then off-my-rocker happy to be offered a chance to read the second book in the series in exchange for another honest review. Well, considering how much I loved the first book, I jumped at the chance. Going into Forget Me Not, I was worried that it wouldn’t hold up to the first book—that happens sometimes with sequels—but I was excited to get even a few more hours in the world of Scarlett, so I dived in.

I wasn’t disappointed. In fact, if anything, I think I enjoyed the second book more. This addition to the Cerulean series was heartbreakingly beautiful. Where the first book focused mainly on the romance between Scarlett and Luke, as well as the mystery surrounding Siena’s death, this book focused mainly on the aftermath of Scarlett’s revelation that she was going to die… and there was nothing she could do about it. I promise I won’t give away too many spoilers, but the story centered on the remaining months of her life… knowing that her time was short and what she chose to do with the time she had left. Even though the plot centered around the supernatural aspect of the Cerulean series, it was hard not to think of Scarlett as an average girl dying from any number of very real causes. The story felt like a peek into the last days of a girl coming to grips with her mortality… and whether her death was permanent or not, it was a very real, very human experience. This book is going to stick with me for a long time.

A lot of mystery still surrounds the Ceruleans. Despite the very heavy main theme, I didn’t feel like the supernatural aspect of the plot was neglected, thankfully, but I don’t know that I’m much closer to figuring out what exactly the Ceruleans are and why Scarlett and her sister have been chosen to become Ceruleans. I still feel like there’s a lot going on that Jude hasn’t given us information about, and with the appearance of Daniel, I feel like I’ve been left with more questions.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book regardless. In fact, before I started writing this review I had to make myself sit down and chill for about 10 minutes because the very first thing I wanted to type was random exclamations of nonsense followed by “OMGOSH why did it have to end!?” I want more. I love this series so much, and I will forever be grateful to Megan Tayte for providing me with the opportunity to review the first two books of the series. If you’re looking for a good, engaging paranormal romance story… grab these books. You won’t regret it. It’s going on my keeper shelf.

Book Review: Death Wish

cover-review-death wishTitle: Death Wish [Ceruleans 1]

Author: Megan Tayte

Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Young Adult, Contemporary

Rating: 5 Stars

AmazonButton

GoodreadsButton

Description/Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Scarlett Blake is haunted by death. Her estranged sister has made the ultimate dramatic exit. Running away from school, joining a surfing fraternity, partying hard: that sounds like Sienna. But suicide? It makes no sense.

Following in her sister’s footsteps, Scarlett comes to the isolated cove of Twycombe, Devon, with grand plans to uncover the truth. Alone. But she hasn’t reckoned on meeting two boys who are determined to help her. Luke: the blue-eyed surfer who’ll see the real Scarlett, who’ll challenge her, who’ll save her. And Jude: the elusive drifter with a knack for turning up whenever Scarlett’s in need.

As Scarlett’s quest for the truth unravels, so too does her grip on reality as she’s always known it. Because there’s something strange going on in this little cove. A dead magpie circles the skies. A dead deer watches from the undergrowth. Hands glow with light. Warmth. Power.

What transpires is a summer of discovery. Of what it means to conquer fear. To fall in love. To choose life. To choose death.

To believe the impossible.

WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW

First, let’s get the technical bits out of the way. I’ll admit, my first impression of the narrative style of Death Wish by Megan Tayte wasn’t great. I don’t know what I was expecting going into this book, but the first few pages came across as a little overly poetic. Maybe because it was a YA Fantasy that had been e-mailed to me directly from the author, I regretfully assumed that the writing was going to be subpar. That happens a lot when you review books on a regular basis. It also didn’t help that the author chose to perpetrate one of my biggest writing pet peeves: incorrectly used conjunctions. It drives me up the wall. Seriously.

Otherwise, the writing was pretty flawless. I didn’t notice a lot of obvious typos or awkward sentences, and other than constantly having to look up the slang (I’m from the US, and Scarlett clearly is not), I found the narrative to be clean. It was easy to follow, and engaging. I got sucked into the story right away and finished it in a matter of hours.

So, going into the book, right off the bat, I’ll admit I was probably a little prejudiced. I was expecting simplistic, overly dramatic writing, and I got… well… detail and well-thought out passages that verged on poetic. It was a bit of a narrative shock, and it bothered me. I wasn’t quite in the right mindset for what I was reading. That didn’t last long. Before I knew it, I was engrossed in Scarlett Blake’s story—I was consumed by it.

I adored the characters, especially Cara and Luke. Scarlett had her moments of stupidity and misjudgment, but overall, I found her to be a strong character. She was a teen that was caught in the middle of dealing with some pretty heavy issues and considering everything she had heaped on her shoulders, she muddled through as best she could. Sometimes she made poor decisions… but I can’t fault her for them. Considering everything that was thrown at her, frankly, she handled it all pretty damn well.

The only characters I truly didn’t like where Scarlett’s parents. Out of the all the characters, they were probably the most 2 dimensional. Her father was little more than a prop. Her mother, was an emotional basket case in the worst, most dramatic way. Frankly, I think the book could have done without them both.

As for the rest, well, I thoroughly enjoyed the mystery aspect of the plot—it almost read more like a mystery/thriller than a fantasy/romance, and every bit of it was enthralling. I wanted to know what had happened to Siena and what was in store for Scarlett as the story wound its way through the twists and turns of the plot. I was desperately clinging on in hopes of learning more about Jude. In the end, not everything was cleared up. I still have a lot of questions about what happened to Scarlett’s sister and who and what exactly the Ceruleans are, but though the ending was a little vague, I feel as if I’m right on the edge of understanding something big about the world Scarlett lives in—and I love that feeling.

Overall, the book gave me more than I’d expected. I was expecting this to be some kind of indie-published YA Romance that was full of dramatics, angst, and typos… but I got so much more. I genuinely enjoyed this book, and I’m hooked from here on out. I will happily be looking out for the rest of the books in the series, and I’d highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys the YA/Fantasy/Romance genres. I still think “Ceruleans” is a bit of a ridiculous name for… whatever it is that Jude is, but I’m willing to live with it.