Monday 9 September 2013

Evernight Teen Double Feature: Phoenix: The Rising by Bette Maybee & Elysium by Sylah Sloan

Phoenix: The Rising is Evernight Teen's first book, and they certainly picked a great one to get started with. The story revolves around Julie, a seventeen year old girl who is struggling with illness, family issues, and being accepted at her new school. Then she meets Eli, and suddenly her whole world changes, because now she's trying to escape from the Nephilim, fallen angels who've gone on a killing spree in search of the Phoenix.

Once I started this book, I only put it down because I literally could not keep my eyes open. It's fast paced and gripping. I love the way Bette's taken actual mythology and created her own modern take on it. The writing is excellent and will keep you hooked throughout. And though the story is complete in itself, its ending hints at a sequel and I'm looking forward to reading that as well!

Every 300 years, the immortal Phoenix returns to Mono Lake to be reborn—but this time it didn't return alone.  The Nephilim are back in force, trying to keep it from being reborn so one of them can claim its immortality. But first they have to figure out who the Phoenix is—and any red-haired, green-eyed, seventeen-year-old in the area is fair game. And so, the killing begins...
Julie Mason doesn't believe all this legend crap until she falls for Eli Sullivan, whose hallucination-inducing kiss not only saves her, but makes her the Nephilim’s prime target. But, it's worth the risk. Her death is inevitable...not even Eli can prevent it.  All she has to do is keep the Nephilim off Eli’s trail until The Rising. Once Eli is reborn and forgets his past life, Julie’s life is over, whether she’s dead or not. At least that's what she thinks...
14+ for brief violence and sexuality
Buy links:  Evernight Teen     Amazon

Elysium is not to be confused with the recent movie. It's the story of a girl who suddenly finds out that her life is not what she once thought it was. She's taken to a new school for paranormal people such as herself, and discovers that she is a pawn in a new power play.
I really enjoyed Sylah's book. It was the first of the Evernight Teen books that I read, even before I had considered submitting my own work to them, and it got me interested. Yes it's paranormal, yes there are vampires, but Sylah has given us a unique take on the existence of the paranormal in our own normal world. Her descriptions are brilliant, and the tension between Meadow and Caedon leaps off the page. Sure he's a couple hundred years older than she is, but when you hit the triple digits, it's hard to find someone your own age. The author makes the romance work. I'd love to read more from Sylah, though she's terribly busy at the moment, both personally and professionally. This book is one of my top picks!

Meadow Caldwell is about to learn a very dark secret about herself. 
When she is taken away from the only family she has ever known and thrust into the world of the paranormal, she learns not everything or everyone is what it seems. 
Arcane Manor, a school for creatures of myth and lore, is all Meadow knows now. The only person she can rely on is herself in this strange, new world, especially with the secret of her true identity. 
When Dr. Cadeon Frost, an enigmatic vampire, helps her unravel her past, Meadow finds herself falling for the quiet, intelligent doctor. 
When she is thrust out of reality and into the arms of a mysterious man, she is trapped between the world she knows and one that nightmares are made of. It is up to her to stop not only an evil that threatens her, but everyone she cares for.
14+ for brief sexuality
Buy links:  Evernight Teen      Amazon