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At 22, practicing Wiccan Sophia Parsons is scratching out a living waiting tables in her Rocky Mountain hometown, living under religious prejudice, the shadow of her bi-polar mother, and an unsolved murder.

Sophia can imagine lots of ways to improve her life, but she’d settle for just getting rid of the buzzing noise in her head. When the spell she casts goes wrong, the static turns into voices. Her personal demons get company, and the newcomers are dangerous.

One of them is a man named Charles, a centuries-old shape-shifter who Sophia falls for despite her better judgment. He has connections that can help her unveil the mystery surrounding her ancestor’s hanging, but she gets more than she bargains for when she finally decides to trust him. Survival in his world, she learns, means not asking questions and staying out of the immortal council’s way. It’s a line she crossed long ago.

If Sophia wants to survive the council and save the people she loves, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.

I bought this book off of a recommendation by Amber Lynn Natusch (author of the Caged series). Honestly, I didn’t think I would like it that much, but as soon as I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down. I will definitely read the second book.

Hamilton has a way of writing that ensures that you have to keep reading. Like when she writes that, basically, the whole town thinks Sophia killed a man then moves on with NO elaboration. I didn’t just have to keep reading to find out the whole story (which is revealed later in the book), but she had lit the flame under my curiosity, so I wanted to. The plot was nothing like I expected. I thought the predominant theme was going to be about wicca, but that ended up just being a very small, though important, part of the storyline. There were some plot twists that I definitely didn’t see coming, but I don’t want to give anything away, so you’ll just have to read the book.

The tone of the book wasn’t too fast paced, but it wasn’t slow either. I definitely wasn’t bored at all, but there also weren’t any moments that made me say “holy crap, what’s gonna happen now?!”. I thought the characters were developed pretty well. Sophia was relatively likeable, though a bit naive without cause, and Charles was very yummy–despite the name. Hamilton’s writing style isn’t extraordinarily remarkable, for me it was just barely above average. Her style is not to be compared with her creativity and originality, though. She’s definitely above average there.

The book was original in a vaguely familiar way. Even though some of the stuff Hamilton included in her book has been written about time and again, she did it in a way I have never read before, and used names for the creatures I had never heard. The creatures Hamilton writes about also have different traits from the ones I have seen before. Even though some of the differences are refreshing, some are just annoying. If it looks like a duck and walks like a duck, call it a duck. (Obviously I’m not talking literal ducks here…)

The book was well written and captivating. I loved the refreshing twist on the same creatures we’ve all come to love. I give it 4 stars.

The Forever Girl at Amazon: THE FOREVER GIRL (an Urban Fantasy / Paranormal Romance Novel of the Occult) (Forever Girl Series #1)