Mar 17, 2012

Review: The Forever Girl: Sophia's Journey (Forever Girl #1)


  • ebook: 288 pages
  • Published: January 26th 2012 by Immortal Ink Publishing
  • Source: author
  • My rating: 5/5 stars

Sophia Parsons’ family has skeletons, but they aren’t in their graves...
Solving the mystery of an ancestor’s hanging might silence the clashing whispers in Sophia's mind, but the cult in her town and the supernaturals who secretly reside there are determined to silence her first.
As Sophia unknowingly crosses the line into an elemental world full of vampire-like creatures, shapeshifters, and supernatural grim reapers, she meets Charles, a man who becomes both lover and ally.
But can she trust him?
It’s not until someone nearly kills Sophia that she realizes the only way to unveil the source of her family's curse: abandon her faith or abandon her humanity. If she wants to survive, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.

After reading the enticing summary and sample chapter, it grabbed me immediately so I jumped at the chance when I saw Rebecca's tweet about offering The Forever Girl to reviewers.
It was nothing short of fantastic. My fears that this book would fall into the usual traps of paranormal romance were dissolved quickly. Here are the reasons why it fit me perfectly:
  • Sophia is a Wiccan, and Rebecca does a great job describing the rituals and the essence of Wicca. Naturally, Sophia's "pagan" beliefs are not welcome in her small town. Same applies for homosexuals, if you ask the religious freaks that harass Sophia. I felt her frustrations like my own. To the point.
  • I loved it's dark atmosphere, palpable anxiety and danger. Sophia is a troubled girl, haunted by her past and her present and an uncertain future, and the fatigue in her voice was constantly there. Rebecca made it easy to feel what it's like in Sophia's shoes. Also, Sophia is my age exactly, fresh out of college without a job. Another know-what-it-feels-like moment. Though she's not the funniest girl to be around, she felt real, and I always appreciate that. 
  • The mythical creatures described in the novel are well-developed and given more depth than simply being classified as vampires or witches. 
  • The romance is not rushed. Charles and Sophia, despite the instant attraction, are aware of the position they are in. They both stick to their own priorities, think things over and try to meet halfway, voice their concerns and keep cool heads when it comes to facing real-life issues, which makes for a very mature relationship. Something many paranormal romances lack. Might be because this one is not YA, rather new adult and I'd expect that anyway, but it was just nice, for a change.
  • As for the romance per se-perfectly captured moments of love, care, passion and tenderness. 
  • There were bits that freaked me out! I'm not easily scared by books, but some scenes made me turn the light back on and double check that there are no ghost girls staring through my window.
Final verdict: if you enjoy urban fantasy/paranormal romance, do yourself a favor and read The Forever Girl. It's an amazing high quality representative of its genre, well-written, exciting and gripping, a book that's almost impossible to put down (you know, if it weren't for family that has to eat and things...) :)

Also, check out Rebecca Hamilton's webpage and Twitter, she's a nice person and a valuable asset to your twitter-feed. She is also actively supporting Autistic Advocacy.
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