(ARC Review) Awakening by Catrina Burgess

The Awakening

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Release date: Oct. 7, 2015  – Book 1 of the Dark Rituals World
Author: Catrina Burgess
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
Themes: Revenge, Magic, Romance
Rating: Starts out as 3 stars, ends at 4 stars
Why’d I read it?: I was attracted at first to the cover!

Notes: Please note that this series was apparently originally posted on Wattpad and was very popular there.

** I received a free egalley of this book from netgalley in return for an honest review!**

After a terrible loss, Colina sets out to find the Death Dealers, determined to have them teach her their dark magics so that she might get revenge on those who wronged her and her family. She finds Luke and Darla, a brother and sister who are Death Dealers. Luke is reluctant to teach Colina, but when trouble comes to his and Darla’s doorstep he reluctantly agrees so that Colina can help him recover something that is taken from him. As they struggle to finish the necessary rituals, and enemies dog their every step, Colina and Luke also find themselves facing a growing passion. Colina will find that she has more to lose than she thought, and that revenge doesn’t come without consequences.

My Thoughts:

I would rate this as a 3.5 for the majority of the book, with the ending having perhaps 4 stars because I did not see that coming. This book reminded me a little bit of Marie Lu’s The Elites books in that the main character is a young girl forced to learn dangerous powers or magics and who is motivated by a burning need for revenge.

I found the beginning of this book to be much weaker than the end, and found myself enjoying it more as it progressed. The only thing I really disliked was the “instanta-like” the heroine felt for Luke, mostly because it felt inappropriate that she would be thinking such things so quickly because she truly should have had other things on her mind. I also felt that the characters were not as well developed as I like to see, however since this is the introductory book of a planned series (the second one comes out Oct. 14, 2015) I am willing to concede that the character development may be planned to be spread out over several books. The main character is not unlikeable, but I never really felt I connected with her. I also prefer when a book hows more than one perspective, but in this book we only get Colina’s perspective. I always feel this limits the scope of the worldbuilding and limits my ability to connect, but that is merely a personal feeling! The quest they were on was original, and the world seems to be a good urban fantasy type where magic users live among non-magic users. We didn’t get to see a lot of the politics involved in this segregated society yet, so I’m hoping to see more of that in book two. When the book started I was not feeling it, but by the end I was committed and I will be giving the second book in the series a try, especially since it comes out in just a couple of weeks!

There is action, suspense, and romance. I like romance in my books but I did feel Colina was a bit too focused on the romantic angst, considering her situation and how the two didn’t know each other very well. Despite the “insta-like” that started their relationship, however, they did face several obstacles throughout that kept it interesting, and the ending included a major obstacle I am interested in seeing how it is resolved.

Major cliffhanger ending warning!

Liked it? Loved it? Gotta have more of it? 

The next book is called Possession and comes out Oct. 14, 2015

You might like Marie Lu’s The Young Elites

Goodreads has other recommendations for you!


About the Author:

Find out more about Catrina Burgess on:

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