Friday, May 5, 2017

REVIEW: Scattered Souls

Flames of Time 2:
By: Erica Lucke Dean

Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Time Travel
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing
Publication date: 1.10.2017
Pages: 233

Ava Flynn is cursed.
            After barely surviving an epic battle between her warring soul mates, Ava is stranded in the past with Laith, while Maddox frantically searches across the decades.  Laith will stop at nothing to prove his love to Ava, and a desperate Maddox must race against time to find her before his brother can win her heart.
            Torn between the two brothers, and with her eternal soul at stake, Ava comes to the horrifying conclusion that only she can break the curse.  But the cost may be more than she is willing to pay.

Before I get into talking about the book, I want to talk about how wonderful I think the new covers are.  I absolutely love them.  Look close and check out the great details...


Whoever did those did an amazing job.  I can't wait to see what the third book cover looks like.

So, some of y'all may be wondering how I got myself roped into reading a romance, especially a romance that is more than just one.  It's simple: The author came to me and, knowing how much I despise romances, and after having a very in-depth conversation about our loves and hates of the genre, asked me if I would be interesting in reading them and giving her my opinion.  She wanted to know what someone who hates romance would think about her book series that, well, has a lot to do with romance.  Not just romance.  Love triangles.  Bleh.

Since she asked so nicely (haha), and because of how much I love her writing (I read her book Ashes of Life and absolutely adored it), I decided to give it a go.  Especially since the two of us agree, in a lot of ways, on the romance subject.

After reading the first in the series (Splintered Souls - you can see the original cover there), I realized that I actually really liked it... even though I think she totally doesn't understand the meaning of cliff hanger... and I may or may not have told her that I hated her for making me like such an abomination as romance (haha).

It has been a LONG time since I've been one of those readers, waiting in breathless anticipation for the next book in a series to come out... and to be that way over a romance?!?!  What is wrong with me?!?!  (I actually joked quite recently about this, saying that she has ruined me, and that I was worried I would end up being one of those people talking about character crushes and book husbands and nonsense like that.)

When she contacted me to tell me that number two was out, I happily accepted the book... mainly because I needed to know what happened next.

I was not disappointed.  Things have changed a bit in this book, my understanding and feelings on different characters has changed, and I'm once again wishing she'd hurry up and write so I can see how this whole thing ends.

From my experience with the author, I have learned that Erica is a very down-to-earth kind of person, and she creates her characters based on that.  Her characters sound like real people, and not those overly-gorgeous, everyone loves them, but they don't understand why kind of people.  Her main character, Ava, could be me.  She could be any of us.  I thoroughly believe we need more books where the character could be me.

And the romance isn't sickeningly sweet or jump-into-bed or these people are so annoying or get a f**ing room or "really?" *eye roll*  It's never any of that the-world-will-end-if-we-don't-fall-in-love blah blah blah blah barf nonsense.  It's just romance... that GOES with the story, enhances the story.  The romance only affects the people who are involved in the romance, and sometimes their family and friends, but that's it.

I like Ava more in this one.  In the first one, well, I wasn't so sure about how I felt about her, but she has definitely "grown up."  Her brother is still a pretty awesome little kid, and her mother, who always had love for her, seems to want to know, understand, and love her more.  The brothers are still... the brothers... and I like how Erica leaves us a bit "in the dark" when it comes to her characters, especially when you think you're sure about something, only to find out that you were maybe believing the wrong character or looking at a situation in the wrong way.  She really is a good writer and, yet again, I can't wait for the next book in this series.

Oh the humanity... (haha)

Recommended by: Read 2 Review
Date read: 2.21.2017

About the author:
After walking away from her career as a business banker to pursue writing full-time, Erica moved from the humble and bustle of the big city to a small tourist town in the North Georgia Mountains where she lives in a 90-year-old haunted farmhouse with her workaholic husband, her 180lb lap dog, and at least one ghost.
            When she's not busy writing or tending to her collection of crazy chickens, diabolical ducks, and a quintet of piglets, hell bent on having her for dinner, she's either reading bad fan fiction or singing karaoke in the local pub.  Much like the main character in To Katie with Love, Erica is a magnet for disaster, and has been known to trip on air while walking across flat surfaces.
            How she's managed to survive this long is one of life's great mysteries.

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