Series: Revenants book 1
UNTIL I DIE (Revenants #2) release date: May 8Synopsis via Goodreads
In the City of Lights, two star-crossed lovers battle a fate that is destined to tear them apart again and again for eternity.
When Kate Mercier's parents die in a tragic car accident, she leaves her life--and memories--behind to live with her grandparents in Paris. For Kate, the only way to survive her pain is escaping into the world of books and Parisian art. Until she meets Vincent.
Mysterious, charming, and devastatingly handsome, Vincent threatens to melt the ice around Kate's guarded heart with just his smile. As she begins to fall in love with Vincent, Kate discovers that he's a revenant--an undead being whose fate forces him to sacrifice himself over and over again to save the lives of others. Vincent and those like him are bound in a centuries-old war against a group of evil revenants who exist only to murder and betray. Kate soon realizes that if she follows her heart, she may never be safe again.
MY REVIEW: 4 STARS
I liked this book, I really did. Did I love it? No, sadly, I didn't. And I really wanted to.
I was initially drawn in by the positive reviews of this book. Then, I saw the cover and.... well, I may have swooned. I think I've mentioned this before, but I love a beautiful book cover. And it's not because I think it's any real reflection of the quality of the story or the writing. It's art. Eye-candy. I could probably sit for hours sifting through book covers alone on goodreads. I had immediate cover love for this one. There she is standing in a beautiful red dress looking down on Paris - Eiffel Tower in the distance. So dramatic and wistful. I decided I had to read this book and find out why she seems so forlorn
As I read, I learned that the main character's name is Kate and she's suffered a terrible loss at 16 yrs old. She and her older sister Georgia have lost their parents in a tragic car accident and have moved to Paris from their home in the U.S., to live with their grandparents. This is an easy transition for them, mostly. Kate and Georgia have spent many a summer in Paris growing up and were raised speaking both English and French fluently. They're pretty familiar with the area their grandparents live in and are accustomed to the culture. Kate is understandably depressed and tries to escape her sorrow by burying herself in books, museums and her bedroom. Georgia chooses a different route. She's gonna party every night till the break of dawn with random people to distract her from her sadness.
These two sisters couldn't be more different - even in looks. Kate is a shy, dark-featured brunette, who has an appreciation for the arts, while Georgia is an extroverted, blond bombshell with a short attention span. Despite their differences, they have a close sisterly bond.
Kate frequents a charming little cafe where she spends most of her day submerged in her books (she's a die-hard reader, I like that). She only surfaces to order her hourly beverage - there's an unspoken French rule that says you can occupy a table for as long as you want if you order a drink every hour, like paying rent on the table. It's at this cafe that she first spots the 'devastatingly handsome and mysterious' Vincent.
Life becomes a whirlwind of secrets, lies, danger and fear for Kate as she becomes more and more involved with Vincent. Why? Because, technically speaking, Vincent is dead. More specifically, he's a revenant. And he has enemies.
What I liked about this book....
Amy Plum is a great writer. Her descriptions, pace, the flow of the story and development of the characters are what make this book worth reading. While we're currently inundated with stories of vampires, werewolves and faeries, Plum offers a refreshing take on the paranormal. And the undead, for that matter. I never would've thought someone could successfully achieve romanticizing zombies....sorry, revenants. And having Paris as the back drop for the story certainly adds to the romantic ambience. Her descriptions are so vivid I could almost feel cobblestone paths beneath my feet and pick up the scent of pastries wafting from the cafes. For the most part I liked her characters, some way more than others. I also enjoyed the playful banter between the them as they teased each other. So the story had it's lighter moments to counteract the heavier ones. It worked.
Why I just couldn't love this book....
I'm not sure I can pinpoint the answer to that. I couldn't help but to notice all the similarities between DIE FOR ME and TWILIGHT. There's the teenage girl, wise beyond her years and the much older, gorgeous, 'undead' guy who's been waiting for love and lives in a mansion with his friends-who-have-become-family. I could go on, but I'll stop there. I'm not so much bothered by these similarities, it's more the story's lack of Oomph! that made Twilight so great and addictive. I liked Vincent, thought he was a nice guy, but past that, I didn't really see the draw to him. I didn't find him tempting and irresistible - so I couldn't really understand her obsession with him. You gotta come at me with way more than just extraordinary good looks. Instead, you know who I was drawn to? His sorta brother, Jules. Now, that guy had it all - hotness, witty sense of humor, sarcasm, tenderness, sensitivity, loyalty, bravery and most of all, what an insufferable flirt. Gimme more of him!
All in all, it was a good book and I recommend it to people who liked Twilight. I'm a Revenants fan for sure, just not a die-hard one. So, was it worth reading? Yes. Will I be reading the sequels? Another yes. I'm interested to find out where Amy Plum takes this.