Tuesday, August 25, 2015

ARC REVIEW: The Reaper's Kiss (Deathmark #1) by Abigail Baker

Title: The Reaper's Kiss
Series: Deathmark #1
Author: Abigail Baker
Publisher: Entangled Select Otherworld
Published: August 25th 2015
Format: eARC | Pages: 341
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Source: Publisher
★★★✩ (3.5/5) Stars!

Abigail Baker | Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

Drop-dead gorgeous…and fatal.

Ollie Dormier's tattoos are deadly. She is a Scrivener—an employee for Death—and her skull tattoos mark her clients for their demise. She does her job, and she stays out of trouble. But when her hands start to burn hot and fierce, and her control goes leaping out the window, all hell breaks loose. Ollie is showing the early signs of being a Master...demonstrating power that is forbidden.

That power is exactly what Reaper Brent Hume is counting on. A hot, scruffy rebel, who does marvelous and terrifying things to Ollie's insides. Now he needs Ollie's help—and her skills—to overthrow the evil and corrupt Head Reaper. That is, if he can figure out a way to keep this hot-handed girl cool...and keep his hands off.

I received a copy of this book, from the publisher, in exchange for an honest review. In no way did this sway either my review or my rating!

I'm having very mixed feelings about The Reaper's Kiss upon finishing it. On the one hand it was a brilliant and unique storyline and so many things within that blurb had me highly intrigued and desperately wanting to get my hands on it and see what it was all about. On the other hand while I still feel like it was all of those things,  but some of the execution of the story fell flat for me.

One of the most interesting draws to this book were the Scriveners. The idea that these supernatural types tattoo their mark on you and you can kiss your soul goodbye. It was fascinating how these people would unknowingly feel the pull to wander into their shop and get marked. I wondered how difficult it would be tattooing someone knowing that it meant their death. Could I handle doing something like that? It was crazy to think of. Though the gist I got from Ollie was that the majority of the people that sat in her chair were lowlife's who didn't deserve a second thought. But still...

I absolutely love a good story where there's a fascist government and a rebellion stirring in the otherwise seemingly devoted people of said government. Plotting and planning and desiring to take down the dictator like leader and bring a more peaceful and harmonious life to their people. This book had all of those things, but that's where the execution wavered for me. Part of the time I was saying yes, yes, yes! And the rest I was running my hand over my face with a heavy sigh.

Sometimes it was hard to look past some if it's more lackluster moments. Ollie, every so often, came off very much like a petulant child. Everything had to be done her way. Upon meeting a new group of rebels for the very first time, after being told she was needed and being asked if she would help them, her response was basically my way or the highway. Especially when her question back was "Will you do everything I say?" I mean, that's it? These people didn't know her or what she was truly capable of the rumor of her has basically just been passed around and instantly they're just suppose to follow her orders without even a "here's my plan" or "here are some ideas I have". Nope it's just do as I say or I don't need you I'll go do it alone. 

The other big thing that had me questioning my feelings towards this book was the romance. Now I am all for romance. You dangle a ship in my face and I am all over that. And I do ship Ollie and Brent. I ship them hard. But I felt like this amazing story kept getting taken over by Brent, Ollie and their uncontrollable hormones. Things went up in flames way, way too fast in my opinion when they knew basically nothing about one another. This is a series. So it seems as if there's going to be plenty of time to develop a romance between them am I right? A nice and amazing slow burn that by the time it finally ignites, a couple books in at least, you feel that "finally!" feeling because the rest of the story was the bigger pull. Is that what we get? No...Hello insta-love. Sigh.

I think that's what makes this whole thing so difficult for me. Because I am completely hooked already. Like I desperately want the next book to be in my hands so I can see what happens next, because that ending...It's going to be maddening having to wait! So I'm trying hard to look past the whole insta-love thing because there's no question that I will be continuing with this series. 

My final verdict? Pretty good, but it could have been freaking amazing with just a couple tweaks. And how long until book two? *Bites nails in anticipation*

Thanks to Entangled Publishing for the opportunity to read and review this book!

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