**As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Katharyn Blair crafts a fiercely feminist fantasy with a horrifying curse, swoon-worthy sea captains, and the power of one girl to choose her own fate in this contemporary standalone adventure that’s perfect for fans of The Fifth Wave and Seafire, and for anyone who has ever felt unchosen.
For Charlotte Holloway, the world ended twice.
The first was when her childhood crush, Dean, fell in love—with her older sister.
The second was when the Crimson, a curse spread through eye contact, turned the majority of humanity into flesh-eating monsters.
Neither end of the world changed Charlotte. She’s still in the shadows of her siblings. Her popular older sister, Harlow, now commands forces of survivors. And her talented younger sister, Vanessa, is the Chosen One—who, legend has it, can end the curse.
When their settlement is raided by those seeking the Chosen One, Charlotte makes a reckless decision to save Vanessa: she takes her place as prisoner.
The word spreads across the seven seas—the Chosen One has been found.
But when Dean’s life is threatened and a resistance looms on the horizon, the lie keeping Charlotte alive begins to unravel. She’ll have to break free, forge new bonds, and choose her own destiny if she has any hope of saving her sisters, her love, and maybe even the world.
Because sometimes the end is just a new beginning.
-Excerpt taken from Goodreads.
Check Goodreads to see the book’s ratings.
(5 / 5) Give it all the stars, I loved it! And can we drool at that cover?
My friend texted and told me about a book that was just sucking her in. I saw that I had put it in my Amazon wishlist but didn’t remember what it was about. After convincing myself not to buy it yet, I found the audio on Scribd. Let’s just say that I will be buying it now!
I needed this book! I needed a book to just get lost in and enjoy the ride. It’s pure entertainment and I was sucked in from minute one. I found closets to clean and walls to wash so I had an excuse to keep listening.
Charlotte is a character that had such great development. She felt lost and coddled in the new world of a virus that transforms people with just a look. She found what was deep inside her and bloomed into someone who could love and accept herself.
The world itself is riveting. People turn into zombie-like creatures, but with much more awareness. Just looking into their eyes infects a person. The infected (or “Vessels”) are smart and cunning and intimidating.
There is a delicate balance to writing good YA romance and Blair nailed it. It’s meaningful and sweet without too many details. There was build up and trust BEFORE any romance started. I LIKED this romance, I was rooting for them and wanted it to succeed. And that is coming from a person who can take or leave any romance story.
Content Summary: I really hate F words in YA books. I really think it limits who will read it. I want to hand this over to everyone so they can love it like I do, but the F words make me pause. I really don’t think any should be in YA. The intimacy was there but it stopped at all the appropriate places so we didn’t get too many details. YAY. That’s how a YA book should be. There was violence and blood, which includes killing many Vessels (chopping off their heads) and many intense/scary situations throughout.
I loved each character and each chapter and I’m so mad this isn’t a series!
Detailed Content Review
Derogatory terms etc-
Alcohol, Drugs, Smoking
A man smokes a cigarette.
A woman plunges a syringe in her neck.
A young woman plunges a syringe in a man’s neck.
A young woman has a cloth with chloroform put over her nose and mouth.
Intimacy, Sex, Immodesty
*Minor LGBTQ+ aspects included*
A young woman watches as her sister kisses a young man passionately.
A woman says men aren’t her type.
A young woman gently kisses a man. He kisses her harder, faster and he groans.
A man and young woman undress out of wet clothes in front of each other.
A young woman and man kiss passionately. She wraps her legs around him and he lowers her to the bed. (Sex implied but no details).
A young woman has a hickey.
A man kisses a young woman.
Violence, Weapons, Crime, Blood
Vessels hunt and chase two teens.
Vessels storm a building and start tearing people apart.
A young woman is in the midst of many Vessels attacking. She sees one eating a man.
A young man stabs a Vessel in the head with an arrow. A young woman cuts off 2 heads of Vessels. The heads fall and roll. They wipe blood off swords.
A young woman sees a man get shot and fall. People attack with grenades. A woman holds a knife to a young woman. Bodies lie all over. A man runs a spear through a man.
Many men are captured. They are being sold into slavery. A young woman is captured and knocked out.
A man knocks out a man, he fights a woman.
A young woman holds a knife to a man’s neck.
A young woman puts a knife to a man’s neck.
Two men fight in a pit. First blood wins. One looks to be wanting to kill. He squeezes the other man’s throat. He kicks the man.
A woman holds a knife to a young woman.
Many Vessels encroach on a group. Heads are severed. A young woman uses a sword to cut off a head. Blood sprays her face as the head falls.
Two people are held with swords at their throats. A man has blood dripping down his ear. A woman shoots a man’s shoulder with an arrow. A man hits a woman in the nose. A young woman cuts the back of a man’s knees, feeling his tendons snap. Blood oozes over her fingers. A man is hit over the head and falls into the water.
Many prisoners escape. They were locked in the bottom of the boat.
A young woman is taken captive.
People hold a man under the water as leverage to a young woman.
A young woman squeezes a young woman’s throat. A man shoots a young woman with a harpoon.
A man gets knocked out and taken captive.
A young woman is dragged out of a car and taken captive with others.
A group hears a woman cut off the head of a Vessel.
Two men (one a vessel) chase a young woman.
A man has a man captive and bound as a threat to others.
Potentially Intense Themes
Vessels are zombie-like people who have red eyes and eat people. They can also infect a person just by making eye contact.
The Crimson is the disease the Vessels are infected with.
A young woman is drowning. She’s sucking in water and can’t find the surface.
A young woman is searching for a young woman in the water. She feels her but can’t grab her. Another young woman grabs her and they perform CPR but there is no pulse.
A young woman has intense fear of water. She almost drowns for a second time.
A man talks about his twin sister going missing then her body being found.
Two families’ bodies are found in a boat stinking of waste and decay.
A young woman talks of being forced to infect others. A young man was forced to do the same with a gun to his head.
A young woman jumps in the water to save a drowning man. He is unconscious and not breathing. CPR is done.
**As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases.