Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Review: Marked - Sarah Fine

Sarah Fine 
Series: Servants of Fate, #1
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Post-Apocalyptic, Mystery
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
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I went into this book knowing absolutely nothing about it besides that it was written by Sarah Fine. With how much I enjoyed her books in the Guards of the Shadowlands series, that's all I really felt I needed to know. While this book follows an adult character rather than a teen and has a very different plot, there were still some similar elements in Marked and I really liked it!

Marked, in a very simple, watered-down description, is about reapers of souls and those who transport souls to either heaven or hell. I've never read a book with a concept like this (although I have seen the TV show Dead Like Me), so it was really cool to read the way Sarah Fine incorporated this concept while also building a post-apocalyptic society. I especially liked the slight references to Greek mythology that were clear as a jumping off point for the story. For example, the leader of the group who transports souls is called the Charon and the main character's last name is Ferry - both references to the figure in Greek mythology who transported the souls to the underworld. The Ferrys also received a gold coin for their service, similarly to how the Charon in Greek mythology required a golden drachma as payment for the ferry ride into Hades. As a fan of Greek mythology, I liked how these small details were interspersed throughout the story without it being the main aspect of the plot - because let me tell you, there is way more to this plot than that.

Marked is a lot of things - it's paranormal, romance, mystery, fantasy, action, and more. The story follows Cacy Ferry and her new paramedic partner, Eli Margolis, after Cacy's father's death. Things are getting even more dangerous in the city they live in and it's clear that one of the reapers, called Kere, is disobeying orders and marking people who are not supposed to die. While it felt like the plot spent a lot of time on the romantic aspect, there was definitely a lot going on with the mystery of what happened to Cacy's father and how it involved Eli's sister, Galena. Marked was an exciting read and I really did not expect it to turn out the way it did.

The main thing that kept me from loving this book was that I didn't quite connect with the characters as much as I would have liked to. I think this is, in part, because the characters are several years older than I am but also because much of the beginning of the story was focused on their chemistry and wanting for each other rather than their emotions dependent of that. While there was solid character development in between the lusty obsession Cacy and Eli seemed to have for each other, it was somewhat less satisfying because the romance felt a bit baseless at times. With that being said, I still thought the romance was compelling later on in the story.

By far my favorite part of the book was the epilogue. The epilogue followed a somewhat unexpected character and gave a deeper look into how the jobs of the Kere and Ferrys work. It also made me really excited for the next book, Claimed, since it made me have a lot of questions about what was going to happen.

Overall, I really liked Marked! I didn't like it quite as much as the books in the Guards of the Shadowlands series, but the plot was engrossing and Sarah Fine did a great job building the world and making the characters feel real. I recommend this for fans of post-apocalyptic and fantasy (especially if you like stories that deal with the afterlife).

- Kiersten

Have you read any books about reapers?
Let us know in the comments!

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