Blog Tour - Stolen Dreams (Cassie Scot #4) by Christine Amsden ~ Brianna's Review and $100 Gift Card #Giveaway
*I’d like to thank the author for providing me an ARC in exchange for my honest review.*
When I read the synopsis for this final book in the Cassie Scot series, I knew I had to read it, even if some things that had happened in the previous books were confusing or blurry in my memory. Thanks to the author, I received an early opportunity to do just that, and I am pretty happy that I did.
Cassie really came into her own in this book. Even if it wasn’t how I was expecting, she changed for the better, and learned to love herself as she was. I thought some of the changes near the end were a little bit odd for Cassie’s character, but I still liked her overall. Reading this series from her point of view has been really fun, and I’ll definitely miss her character.
The side characters in this book continued to grow. I felt really horrible for Madison, but the fact that she always stuck by her friends’ side made me love her even more. As for Kaitlin, I thought that she definitely didn’t deserve what she got. She was still a good friend to Cassie and Madison though. Finally, there was Evan. All the reasons I liked his character came into play in this novel. Sure, he was overbearing and overprotective, but he was also open and honest. I was wondering how he and Cassie would get anywhere in this novel, since the feud between their families was at an all-time high, but I needn’t have worried. Their relationship really matured, and turned into something good for both of them, although I do think certain things changed a bit fast.
This story revolved around the feud between the Blackwoods and Scots. There were arguments, curses, fights, and even a death. Through all this, Evan and Cassie finally learned to work together, in order to discover what was really going on. I liked the romantic element in this book, even if some things did happen a bit too abruptly.
Either way, I couldn’t put this book down once I really got into it, and it was a good final installment in Cassie’s story. I enjoyed the friendship and romance, as well as the mystery. I did find the revelations and ending a bit anticlimactic, along with some of the things that happened with Evan and Cassie. Still, if you’ve read the first three books in this series, you should definitely pick up this one and see how everything ends. And if you haven’t read a book in this series, you need to go and pick up the first novel. The world and characters make this a series any paranormal reader won’t want to miss.
Series Reading Order
Author: R.S. McCoy
Release Date: December 16 2013
"Everyone in the world has a spark, a light inside that guides them, keeps them alive.”
Myxini School for Children specializes in training young men and women who have powerful sparks. Strikers are taught to manipulate fire. Trackers learn to find animals in the most formidable terrains. Handlers are instructed in communication with large predators. But forty years have passed since the last time they had a Reader – a student with the ability to read minds.
When Lark Davies enrolls at Myxini, he knows there aren’t many like him, but he doesn’t realize just how rare his abilities really are. He thinks nothing of being asked to keep his spark a secret; after all, he can barely control it. Thoughts and emotions flood unbidden into his mind until he can scarcely walk or hold a conversation. But just when he needs it most, his ability fails him.
Larks meets Khea, a small frightened girl who mysteriously insights his protective nature. He has no explanation for the curious strength of their relationship, and it doesn’t help that she is one of the few people in the world whose thoughts can’t be read. As he struggles to get to the root of their unique bond, Lark begins to unravel more power than even his mentor expected, but in the process makes himself a target to political leaders eager to take control.
Lark has the Reader spark. Before he went to Myxini, he had no idea what a spark was and that there were more like him out there. I liked Lark. He's sweet, caring and really protective of Khea and of those closest to him. I loved seeing him grow up through the years and learn more and more about his spark, and how to use it. I liked Khea, but wish I had more time with her to get to know her and connect with her a little more. I loved seeing her go from this scared little girl to a strong young woman. I also liked Mathias as well as Avis, even though I didn't like him at first but he grew on me by the end.
The plot was interesting, but at times I found myself getting a little bored (mostly when the political stuff came into play). I liked learning about all the little islands in the world that R.S. McCoy created and about the people in them.
Overall, I liked this book. I liked learning about their world and the different sparks. I recommend it to anyone looking for a different kind of book.
She wore light blue, and held her blonde hair out of her face with a braid. She looked better than when I last saw her: she'd put on a few pounds which got rid of her starved look, her clothes fit properly, and she was clean. Girls at Myxini wore brown fitted pants, and her narrow knees were the only hint of what she'd been like before.
I ran over to her as soon as I saw her, but the blank expression she wore made it clear she wasn’t all that pleased to see me. It had been months, and I'd almost thought she'd gone home, or hadn't had a bright enough spark after all. I could have jumped and yelled from excitement to see her.
“Lark, have you met my mentor Mathias?” She turned to look at a middle aged man who stood behind her. I couldn’t get a read on either one, though it was hard to tell in the commotion of the training area. He wore the gray coverings that all mentors wore, and despite the age on his face, his golden hair matched the yellow pendant about his neck; which itself was inlaid with a black stone spider.
“Where have you been all this time?”
“Training, of course. Haven’t you?”
“Well, yes, but–. Why haven’t I seen you?”
“Mathias is responsible for all my lessons.” She was cold and dismissive, almost as if I bothered her. I couldn’t believe it. Why is she being so weird? I only wanted to make sure she was safe, that she was taken care of. What happened?
With a wave of dismissal she walked past me to challenge Parvani and I was sure my mouth dropped to the ground. Does she have any idea what she’s doing?
“Is she crazy?” Micha asked. He seemed more worried for her mental faculties than her general well-being, though I couldn’t disagree.
They stood and faced each other as Sinha commenced the fight. Khea was at least a full foot shorter than Parvani and looked like she could be her toy. I didn’t imagine Parvani was going to let her down easy.
In a moment of what must have been suicidal desire, Khea lunged, blocked a punch, and landed her fist square on Parvani’s cheek before the larger girl dropped onto her back on the ground. It was the most impressive display I had ever seen. Once she knew what she was up against, Parvani put in real effort to fight, and for a while, it seemed as if they were evenly matched. The final blow came when Khea grabbed Parvani's wrist, spun around her, and forced her to the ground. “Yield,” Parvani let out, defeated.
Without a word to me or Micha, Khea walked back to Mathias and he led her away. It was all I could think about the rest of the day, and into the next morning. What happened to Khea? Where has she been all this time and why is she so distant now? And since when was she some sort of combat master?
The next day Khea returned alone and challenged Shaz, a move that made me feel that Micha might have been right. Unlike Parvani, Shaz only lasted a measly few minutes before the pain in his leg prompted a yield. That time I was able to catch her before she left.
“Hey, Khea. What’s going on? Why won’t you talk to me?”
“I’m sorry, I’m not allowed to.”
“You’re not allowed to? Says who? That Mathias guy?” It seemed outlandish that anyone should be prevented from seeing me, particularly Khea.
She nodded before she replied, “I’m not supposed to talk to you. Please leave me alone.” Right then a boulder fell from the sky and crushed me. I just wanted to make sure she was alright. Why would someone prevent that? What made it worse was that she went along with it. She hadn’t fought against it or refused to follow his rules. My insides ached in a new kind of pain.
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