ARC Review: Amber Smoke by Kristin Cast (The Escaped #1)

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Original Title: Amber Smoke

Year Published: 2015

Published by:  Diversion Publishing (an arc was kindly provided via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)

Number of Pages: 275

First Sentence: The ancients knew them as the Furies, seekers of justice.

Goodreads Rating: 1/5

Plot:

There is a world that runs parallel to our own, a world in which the souls of the damned are caged, where they are looked over by the Furies, and where they spend eternity in torment, mirroring the devastation and mayhem they created when alive.

Someone has opened the cage.

The worst of terrors has crossed the barrier that separates our world from theirs, and the Furies send a great, albeit untested warrior—their only son, Alek—to try to bring those souls back. He is young and handsome, headstrong and impulsive, and he won’t be able to do it alone.

Eva has grown up, beautiful and beloved, but surrounded by secrets. First, she will be hunted in an ancient feud that will threaten her life. Then, she will become the hunter.

With the police closing in and two worlds on the verge of crumbling around them, Alek and Eva must find each other, discover the limits of their powers, and work together to save everything they hold dear, including one another. Blending elements of mythology with the dazzling storytelling that her fans have devoured through the House of Night series, Kristin Cast weaves a spellbinding and passionate tale that starts a thrilling new series with an explosive charge.

My thoughts:

This book seemed so promising when I requested it and I really thought I was in for something good. How wrong I was. The basic premise of this book seemed amazing and like the foundation for an exciting adventure. The execution, however, was just terrible. I have never read the House of Night series so I can’t make any comparisons to that one either.

The writing was appalling. The language was horrid and to be honest, I could have written it better and I am a terrible author. It had no flow to it and it just felt like a horrible combination of stilted and childish. The dialogue was terrible and at times way too long.

The plot is all over the place and at times it makes no sense at all. The mythology didn’t feel very well researched and at no point did the plot feel original or well thought out. I will say that the first chapter did seem somewhat promising, but then it just went downhill.

The characters were ALL extremely annoying, and I wanted to smack all of them over the head for so many different reasons. The main character was spoilt and just vapid, the main love interest was a sexist man with a hero complex and the rest just made me go “ugh”. No character development to speak of either.

I was sorely disappointed when reading this book and will most definitely not read any more in this series. I doubt I will ever pick up another book, whether an arc or not, by Kristin Cast. At least not after the train wreck this book is.

Do I recommend it? 

No, I do not.

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