“Evil might not prevail in the end, but it certainly doesn’t fail to devastate in its time.” ― Richelle E. Goodrich
Author: A.M. Arthur
Publisher: Musa Publishing
Pages/Word Count: 85 Pages
Rating: 5 Stars
Blurb: When the bizarre murder of an old classmate reunites ex-lovers Ethan and Jesse, a shared childhood secret draws them back together as an otherworldly killer tries to tear them apart for good.
After escaping its mysterious grasp twelve years ago, Ethan Wilde never thought he’d return to Kingston, North Carolina—until the murder of an old schoolmate draws him back to the hometown he fears and the love he left behind. Rooted to Kingston by a force he can’t explain, Jesse couldn’t leave with Ethan when he asked, and it’s a choice he’s always regretted. A choice based on a terrible secret they share with four others. When they were nine years old, the six of them were taken into the woods, and no one is exactly sure what happened to them. Only that they came out changed. Marked. Twenty years later, the evil that hunted them is back and it’s collected two souls already. Ethan and Jesse’s love defeated the monster once, but are old feelings strong enough to save the survivors a second time?
Review: When I read the blurb for this book, I was intrigued. I love a good paranormal story, especially when there is the added bonus of reunited lovers. I was very interested to see how well A.M. Arthur would do with this one because I had only read her Cost of Repairs series before now, and it’s definitely not paranormal.
I loved the way the author told this story. It begins with Ethan Wilde getting an email about the death of a girl he grew up with, and his choice to return to the one place he swore he would never set foot in again. It takes a while to get the entire story of what happened to Ethan, Jesse and their four classmates, in the woods of Kingston, North Carolina when they were only nine years old. We were given small pieces of the puzzle through flashbacks from Ethan’s point of view. Flashbacks don’t always work for me, but I loved how Ms. Arthur included them in this story right along with present day happenings.
I don’t want to delve too deeply into the backstory or the mystery portion of the book, because I feel you have to experience it as the author wrote it, without spoilers, or it will take the power out of the writing. The romance, on the other hand, was wonderful. There weren’t many love scenes, but there was a clear impression of past love and present longing that did eventually lead our two MCs to the bedroom.
All in all, I was happily surprised to see what A.M. Arthur did with a paranormal/horror title. I think the delivery of the story was fabulous and integral to the success of this book. I don’t think it would have worked if it was told any other way.
If you are looking for a quick, well written paranormal title, this one would be a great pick up for you. I would highly recommend Prodigal.