16-year old Emily has accepted her fate with each weakening beat of her heart, but after her best friend's brother and sister arrive in town and turn out to be more than what they appear, Emily's life is turned upside-down. When their friendship includes confronting wizards who harbor dark secrets and dancing with an elf prince, Emily discovers there are some things still worth living for.
Kelly Riad is from Texas where she lived with her husband and a house overrun by pets. She now lives in the San Francisco Bay area and is determined to bring the y'all to the West Coast. While she published her first book - a handmade pop-up titled "The Lost Puppy" - in the fifth grade to much acclaim by the first graders, she only recently picked the craft back up. "Return to Arèthane" is her second published novel.
Guest Review by Mercedes *Find her on Twitter*
Once in while I stumble upon a completely different and unique book that makes me fall in love with the YA genre all over again. “Return to Arethane” would be the perfect example of that.
As a daily YA reader, whether I like it or not, I tend to compare and categorize books. I put them in mental shelves such as: vampires, dystopian, etc. But with this book in particular, I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t place it in any of those shelves because I haven’t read anything like it before. Both the storyline and characters took me by surprise.
The book starts out with Emily having to deal with an alcoholic mother and some health issues. As you go further on the story we meet Emily’s BFF, Dafne. She’s a sweet girl who looks after and takes care of her friend. Then, Dafne’s brother and sister, Jarrad and Kara, appeared and everything change between Dafne and Emily. While Jarrad is sweet, gentle and, let me say it, a gentleman, Kara seems to be a total witch.
Talking about the characters, I liked that each and every one of them had a story of their own. All of them had secrets and the third person point of view allow the reader to approach everybody equally. From the very beginning you can tell Emily is the main character but as I kept reading I
found out more and more about Jarrad, Karawyn and Dafne too.
If it weren’t for trivial things such as college, work or sleeping, I would have read this book in one sit. I actually found myself taking my Kindle to classes or work so I could keep reading. Besides being different from any other book, what I really liked about this one is that it kept on the edge of my seat many times. Unusually, I rooted for every character and I couldn’t wait to know what was coming next for them.
Kelly Riad’s writing was fluent, vivid and compelling. I could picture everything she described and felt part of the story altogether. With unique touches, she made the story quick, funny and thrilling.
Since I don’t like spoilers, I try to avoid them as much as possible but let me tell you a few things. First, you are going to fall for Jarrad, it doesn’t matter which is your men type; you are going to love him. Second, there is more than meets the eye, so don’t judge the characters too quickly. Third, no matter how good you’re guesses are, in the end, you won’t get even close. Finally, if you are looking for a different, sweet, dynamic and fantastic book, “Return to Arethane” will be your Google’s search results.