Hi there! It’s my great pleasure to welcome the new release of a great writer, fellow critique partner and friend, Cherie Colyer! I’m so excited to share my review of CHALLENGING DESTINY, a YA paranormal romance. This Wild Rose Press release features angels, demons, humans and not one, but TWO love stories! Yay!
Logan can sense something’s not quite right. Like an unexpected chill on a summer’s day, he can feel the unseen closing in. He’s had these feelings before and, each time, someone close to him died. He’s afraid this time it might just be Ariana.
Logan’s fears are soon confirmed when he discovers their new friends aren’t human, but rather representatives from Heaven and Hell sent to Earth to ensure he and Ariana accept their roles in an ancient prophecy. Demons want Logan to open the gates of Hell. Ariana has the power to stop them, but if she chooses to side with Heaven to spare the lives of thousands of innocent people, she’ll damn her brother for eternity.
Together, they must derail the biblical event if they hope to save themselves and the future of mankind…but what price are they willing to pay to keep the other safe?
How’s About A Little Taste?
That night I awoke to a noise in our apartment. Soundlessly, I got out of bed, grabbed the metal baseball bat I kept near my door—a habit I’d picked up from my uncle—and went to look around. I pushed Ariana’s bedroom door open a crack. Her room was dark. It smelled like the autumn-spice candles she always burned. She was fast asleep, curled up on her side under her thick cream comforter. A search of the family room and kitchen turned up empty. Relieved, I decided that I had to have been dreaming or had heard one of our neighbors out in the hall. I stumbled back to my room, cursing under my breath when I jammed my little toe on the edge of the doorframe.
My head had barely hit the pillow when a raspy, male voice barked, “Trap!”
My racing heart drowned out the rest of its words. I knew that voice, and there was never a person attached to it. My mind went numb with fear, and every muscle in my body tensed. I’d thought I was past hearing voices. I wanted to scream and would have, but I didn’t want to wake Ariana.
The disembodied voice spoke again in a hurried whisper: “Must protect.” There was a long pause. “Up to you.”
And then silence. Outside, a distant horn blared and cars swooshed past the apartment complex. I sat in the shadows created by the moonlight and listened.
It didn’t speak again.
What trap? Protect who? Why was it up to me? The words had been garbled so badly, I wasn’t even sure I’d heard them correctly. Hearing voices freaked me out—it always had. And now I had more questions that I didn’t know how to find the answers to.
A moment later, Ariana’s blood-curdling scream had me out of bed and sprinting to her room.
YIKES! that’s pretty intense.
In this contemporary YA paranormal romance Ariana and Logan Ragsdale are orphaned siblings who happen to have mind-control powers. Logan is 18 and Ariana is 16, both born on All Saints Day, two years apart. Their parents died in an house fire 8 years ago, and their aunt and uncle, who had been guardians, were killed in an auto wreck two years ago. After bouncing to a couple foster homes and finding those caregivers being strangely injured, Logan convinces the Illinois State Foster system to let them live alone…
When we begin the story, Logan and Ariana are staying under the radar of the authorities. Ariana has a BFF, Becca, but they mostly keep to themselves–out of fear that any people close to them are targets for the tragedy that seems to follow them.
Of course, they are teens, so it’s impossible not to notice the two new students in their small high school. Ben is in Ariana’s art class, and interested in dating her. Strangely, he is immune to Ariana’s mind-control. Likewise, Logan meets Kira in Foods class. The attraction simmers, and yes, she can resist Logan’s mind powers.
Starting fledgeling relationships is foreign, but exciting. Still, they are wary due to the lack of effect of their powers on their potential beaux. Especially so when Kira begins to reveal more of her history to Logan. She’s been 16–for a real long time…and most of that was spent in agony. Seducing Logan to her purpose will satisfy the requirements of her boss, but could mean the end of civilization.
Not as though these kids didn’t suspect foul play in the deaths of their caregivers, but who’s really ready to accept celestial explanations? Surely not Logan. He thinks Kira’s off her nut, and rightly so. A little physical demonstration promptly makes him a believer, however.
And Ben? He’s on the other side of this equation. He’s anxious to get Ariana to join his team, even if doing so condemns Logan to a fiery fate.
With new knowledge behind the sinister plot that isolated Ariana and Logan from anyone who could help them, they must choose who to trust. According to a prophesy, a war is coming between the Blessed and the Fallen, and the winner will be decided when Ariana, or Logan, chooses a side to assist.
In either case, accepting their destinies means they will lose each other. Or, not. See, Ariana and Logan are determined to beat the Blessed and Fallen at their own games–and set themselves free of this cataclysmic prophesy.
Not that they go about it right. Outsmarting beings that can read your mind is pretty tough, after all. Escape Plan A soon devolves into Survival Plan C.2 when one of their guides changes teams mid-game and the casualties are dear.
It’s a wild chase with pretty steady tension throughout as Ariana and Logan search for the answers that will divert their fate. The end is tied up, but leaves room for a sequel. It’s an innocent read and suitable for lovers of paranormal YA fiction.
Cherie Colyer is the author of YA paranormal thriller/romance, EMBRACE and HOLD TIGHT from Omnific Publishing. Her latest novel, CHALLENGING DESTINY is newly released from The Wild Rose Press, Black Rose Imprint. Check out her website and blog for news on her books and bonus material. Follow Cherie on Twitter, Facebook, and/or Goodreads to get the latest updates on her books.
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