Title: Rose Petal Graves
Author: Olivia Wildenstein
Series: The Lost Clan
Genre: Thriller Fantasy
PEEK – A – BOO
Ancient secrets cannot remain buried forever.
Founded two centuries ago by a powerful tribe of Gottwa Indians, Rowan was a quiet town, so quiet that I fled after graduation. Staying away was the plan, but Mom died suddenly.
Dad said she suffered a stroke after she dug up one of the ancient graves in our backyard, which happens to be the town cemetery. Creepy, I know. Creepier still, there was no corpse inside the old coffin, only fresh rose petals.
As we made preparations for Mom’s burial, new people began arriving in Rowan, unnervingly handsome and odd people. I begged them to leave, but they stayed, because their enemies—my ancestors—were beginning to awaken.
MY TAKE ON R P G
I had read the novella of Rose Petal Graves last year and had liked it immensely. To read its review, click here.
The novella had left me at a point where I was desperate to find out more. So, one can just imagine my delight when I received a copy of the complete novel. I pounced on it without second thoughts.
This novel is a fantastic read. The story-line just grips you and you cannot detach yourself until you finish reading the whole book.
The story starts with returning of Catori to her hometown due to the sudden death of her mother. Catori refuses to believe that it was a natural death. She has an inkling that something is not fitting the whole picture. Her suspicion strengthens with the appearance of a book and some peculiar strangers. As if this was not enough, she realizes that she has the ability to see what others can’t. With all this happening around her, she treads into the world which was unknown to her. The turn of events is such that she is bound to take quick decisions. With her loved ones being in danger, will Catori be able to make correct choices???
THE LAYERED CONTENT
I loved the way how the story unfolded. Every chapter brought out a new event or turn. With every turn of the page, my heartbeat used to soar in anticipation. With every unfurling, the story pulled you deeper and deeper within. The story which just started with a death of a person unwinds into so much more and bigger. The chapters are like layers which need to be peeled off to get the real picture. Made my reading very enjoyable.
To be honest… this was the highlight of the whole story for me. It was this aspect which kept me glued to the book throughout. When I say baffling atmosphere, I am referring to the atmosphere around the protagonist. After the death of her mother, Catori comes in contact with many people. As the story progresses, we find that she has unknowingly fallen in the center of the centuries-old battle. Catori is unable to classify the people around her as her well-wisher or enemy. As soon as she tries to believe in one of those people, such developments happen which puts that person in a tight spot. The more she tries to untangle herself from these magical creatures, the more she is wrapped up in their world. The problem is she doesn’t know whom to trust. The beauty lies in the confusion of choosing the friend or the foe.
NOT SO IMPRESSIVE CAST
Except for a couple of characters, the cast couldn’t impress me much. Why? Because it is well known that too many cooks spoil the broth… 😉
When I had read the novella, there weren’t so many characters… but in this book, half a dozen more were added in a short period of time. It is not that I have a problem with lots of characters or they confuse me. On the contrary, I love reading long novels with lots of characters… and THAT is my point of reason. I personally felt that the length of the story and number of characters couldn’t do justice to each other. The story felt a little short with the number of characters involved and hence the cast couldn’t get a proper spotlight.
I was unable to connect with any of them as I was in the novella. Catori came out as a strong girl initially, but then her romantic interests just made my head spin. With a type of personality who rules by the head, her heart seemed pretty weak. I grew really weary of her seeking romance every now and then.
Among the male casts, surprisingly I liked Ace more than others. Maybe because at least he was very clear with his intentions and motives.
Catori’s father was another likable character. His awkwardness in his attempt to fill the space of Catori’s mother, thereby asking Catori to share her feelings with him… is adorable. I could totally understand his selfishness for wishing that his daughter stays with him for a longer period of time. Her father showed real human characteristics.
THE WELL-KNOWN ROMANTIC ANGLE
This was the weakest part of the book. As much as I loved the thrilling side of the book, the romantic side gave me that much despair. All hopes accumulated towards the love angle after reading the novella were completely shredded in this book. The whole romantic angle was screaming ‘Twilight Saga’. I need not say more.
4 stars. I would have loved to give five but for the romance.
Olivia Wildenstein grew up in New York City, the daughter of a French father with a great sense of humor, and a Swedish mother whom she speaks to at least three times a day. She chose Brown University to complete her undergraduate studies and earned a bachelor’s in comparative literature. After designing jewelry for a few years, Wildenstein traded in her tools for a laptop computer and a very comfortable chair. This line of work made more sense, considering her college degree.
When she’s not writing, she’s psychoanalyzing everyone she meets (Yes. Everyone), eavesdropping on conversations to gather material for her next book, baking up a storm (that she actually eats), going to the gym (because she eats), and attempting not to be late at her children’s school (like she is 4 out of 5 mornings, on good weeks).
Wildenstein lives with her husband and three children in Geneva, Switzerland, where she’s an active member of the writing community.
A fascinating thriller fantasy. A must read for those who love mysteries of mythical world spiced with Red Indian culture.
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