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24 February 2011

Book Review: HAUNTED

AUTHOR: Joy Preble
IMPRINT: Sourcebooks Fire
PUBLICATION DATE: 1 February 2011

Anne is trying her best to live a normal life, but she's still got some power sparking inside her. She's hearing and seeing things that she tries her best to ignore-like being haunted by a Russian sea nymph that claims the princess Anastasia is still alive.

That's when Ethan Kozninsky-he of the stunning blue eyes, thick brown hair, and former immortal status-returns. Anne soon realizes that everything she's been trying to forget might be impossible to bury.

HAUNTED description and cover art courtesy of Goodreads.

I received an ARC of HAUNTED from Star Book Tours.

This eerie sequel to DREAMING ANASTASIA delves deeper into Russian folklore and tells the story of a young girl being HAUNTED by the past.

I actually read HAUNTED before reading DREAMING ANASTASIA and I liked how, although this is the second book in a series, it had a stand alone storyline that I could follow despite not knowing the history of the characters and their introduction in the first novel. Author Preble did a great job of recounting the major events in the first book so that those who had not already read it would not be confused, but she avoided the dreaded info dump.

Unlike most of the popular young adult paranormal books out now, Preble delves into new territory by incorporating Russian folklore into her novels. This refreshing view not only introduces new paranormal creatures into the genre, like the Russian rusalka character, but it also incorporates historical aspects of Russian culture that drew me into the story more.

I didn't like the introduction of Ben as the new boyfriend. Granted I have not yet read the first book, so I don't know what Anne's and Ethan's relationship was at the end of that book, but I felt Ben was just a romantic interest placeholder. Once Ethan returned and was a major character in the story, Ben became superfluous and unnecessary. Plus, his relationship with Anne definitely seemed more one-sided. I think the romance, such as it was, between Anne and Ethan was much more authentic.

HAUNTED is a suspenseful novel full of plot twists that kept me guessing at the outcome. I enjoyed how the story was told from different points of view because it helped me to connect to the characters more. I'm looking forward to reading more of Anne's and Ethan's stories in the next book.


Click here to purchase HAUNTED from The Book Depository.


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