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After the death of her parents, Ruby awakens from a lifetime of shadows and finds herself alone, thrust into a world of lies, deceit, betrayal and the supernatural. As her quest for truth continues to come up short, she realizes that maybe some questions really are best left unanswered. When her true identity is finally unveiled, she is forced to choose between two of the mysterious men who continually seem to crop up in her life.

She chooses poorly.

Now abandoned, Ruby must learn to call on the darkness within to survive, or spend a hellish eternity imprisoned because of it.

I have a confession.  You are now reading a review by someone who is not above choosing books solely based on their covers.  Give my eyes an ethereal, captivating, or disturbing image to burn into my mind and I’m in.  Yep, I’m superficial.  But, this shallow girl scored big time using that selection criteria with CAGED, the first novel in The Caged Series by Amber Lynn Natusch.  Amazingly, the inside was even better than the outside as I found CAGED to be a well-written novel with fabulous character development, brilliant dialogue, and a gripping plot.

It’s next to impossible to talk about this book without giving away spoilers…it’s one of those books that grabs you from the first page and doesn’t let go until the very last word.  Ruby is easily the coolest protagonist I’ve ever read…and I’m not just saying that because I totally identify with her.  She’s sarcastic as hell, she doesn’t deal with her emotions, and she’s into music and shoes.  What’s not to love?  Throw in the incredibly yummy men that Natusch has written into Ruby’s world (one of whom is my new book crush) along with the supernatural element…and you have a recipe for sheer reading bliss!

While reading the prologue, my husband made the ridiculous mistake of trying to ask me a question.  I held up a silencing finger and shook my head in an attempt to nonverbally communicate to him that I would answer his question later. Poor guy.  Later never came.  I stayed up night all glued to Ruby and company.  I laughed out loud more times than I could count and ended up with whiplash from the OMG plot twists.  Despite the fact that I was carrying luggage for a European vacation under my eyes the next day, I could not shut up about this book.  I was talking about it to everyone and my husband.  Literally.  Not since the Fever Series, have I been so enthralled.  CAGED is one of those books…it just sucks you right into its world without warning and by the time you realize what’s happened, you don’t want to come back to reality…you enjoy life in Ruby’s head.

If it sounds like one amped up rollercoaster ride of amazing, that’s because it is…CAGED is an original, fast-paced,  character driven paranormal romance that had this reader ignoring the pull of reality in order to find out what would happen next.

I give CAGED a solid 5 stars!   

On a side note, once I finished CAGED, I was desperate to read HAUNTED, the next book in the series.  I found the authors website at http://www.amberlynnnatusch.com and emailed her.  Amber was fabulous when she responded and she even was gracious enough to allow my bookclub to interview her via Skype for our discussion of CAGED, which was fantastic!   I highly recommend CAGED and will be reviewing HAUNTED in no time!
The Caged Series at Amazon: CAGED (The Caged Series)

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