I received a free copy of this book from the author, but my thoughts are my own.

serenade

Publication date: April 17

Seventeen-year-old Kaya Lowen is rich and isolated–really isolated. With multiple attempts on her life, she lives surrounded by bodyguards on her father’s property, without any friends. In fact, many people don’t even believe she exists. Then she’s kidnapped–and she learns some secrets that make her wonder where she belongs. She loves her fiercely loyal bodyguard, Oliver, but then she begins to develop feelings for her kidnapper, Luke–she’s going to have to make a choice, before it’s made for her.

There’s some pretty problematic themes in this book–the biggest of which is the relationship with Kaya’s kidnapper. (Not that her relation ship with her bodyguard is much better. And yes, there is a love triangle.) But such kinds of romances are pretty popular, so many people are willing to overlook it. If it bothers you, I’d read something else. Kaya is also very young, mentally, and manipulated by some powerful, malicious people, so she makes more than a few poor decisions, and does a fair bit of waffling and complaining about her worries.

So the romances are really co-dependent, but the action is where this book shined for me. It’s a whirlwind once it gets started, with one disaster falling on the top of another–some of them sneaky and subtle machinations, and others big explosions. The kidnapping is just one part of the events that befall Kaya, more of an inciting incident than anything else. There’s no way to describe them without giving anything away, but it is safe to say there’s plots within plots–people working at cross-purposes, and clashing as they try to get at Kaya. The story catches you up and pulls you along, and makes you wonder what secrets the people Kaya trusts are hiding–and there are a lot of secrets, too.

The characterization is pretty well done, too. I don’t much like Kaya, but she’s realistically portrayed, a sort of spoiled princess despite herself, dependent on her guards, because she’s not given the skills to take care of herself. When she’s allowed to make choices, she has some moments of weakness there, too, but I can forgive her that.

After the big secrets are revealed, she stands on her own and makes up her mind about what she wants from her future, which isn’t going to be easy. I’m curious to see where the story is going next.

 

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About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

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