Author: Kaitlyn Felt
Release Date: 9th December 2013
Find on: Goodreads
Quick Review: One dead. Four alive. One book. Thousands of lies…
After finding a mysterious black book containing letters written to her deceased brother Tommy by a nineteenth century prodigy by the name of Sophia Grant, Fiona Kent and her friends find themselves entwined in an adventure that seems beyond life itself. After chasing the mysterious Sophia Grant’s family tree back to New York City, Fiona, Kyle, Logan, and Taylor are finally ready to figure out how Sophia was connected to Tommy and end the mystery once and for all. However, when a key person winds up dead and another one goes missing, the kids realize that they, too, may not get out of New York alive. Torn between following their hearts or the logic of their minds, Fiona and her friends struggle to figure out if the knowledge Sophia Grant holds is worth their very last breaths. Should they risk their lives by continuing to search for the answers behind the black book or should they save themselves and run away from everything as fast as they can?
Detailed Review: <<I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review>>
This book is the sequel to the first book, Chasing Heartbeats and is told from both Kyle and Fiona's points of view. It starts at the point when Fiona and her friends and brother decides to leave for New York to find out Sophia Grant's connection to her brother. They are now in New York and the trip is harder than they thought, with the sudden appearance of a possible stepmother and love interest. And when things get dangerous, do they only understand the risks of their mission, which may even tear both Kyle and Fiona's friendship apart.
I whisked through this book in the shortest time possible. I don't think I've read this fast since Divergent. One, because it was quite short. Two, because it was quite good. It's definitely ideal if you're looking for a fast read. The writing was quite smooth, but again, like the first book, needed a little more revision to help erase any spelling mistakes. This did affect my opinion slightly, because I am a perfectionist and hate any mistakes, whether spelling or grammatical. Looking forward, I hope to see a more polished result in the next book.
Another thing that put me off was the insta-love between two of the characters ( I won't tell you who). I was surprised by how I reacted to this particular one, because I'm fine with them as long as they blend in well with the story. If you read my recent review for Never Say Goodbye by Beth Cooper, you'd know that I actually liked the insta-love there, but definitely not this one. It was way tooooooo short to even classify it as romance. And it seemed to not belong in the story at all. I would have preferred that the characters just remained friends instead of jumping straight into romance. I was slightly disappointed by Felt's lack of awareness of the story. It's like she suddenly decided that she wanted a love triangle and suddenly added a character just to make that happen.
These two things were what pulled my rating down by one and a half.
Having got through the bad parts, overall I found this book quite enjoyable. The character development was actually excellent, with the exception of only one character, who was involved in the insta-love plot. He seemed out of place, like the romance he was in.
One character which I thought was very well written was Briella, she definitely gave me the 'wicked witch' vibe in her first appearance. She has that curiosity and determination which witches would possess. She reminds me of the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz! She made a brilliant antagonist.
Now I must bring your attention to the most important part of that a book could ever have besides characters, the writing. Usually when I read a book I always ask myself, 'Do I feel connected to the characters? Do I feel what they feel?'. The answer for this book was one big YES. I could feel Kyle's anger and desperation most of the time. I could feel Fiona's uncertainty of her actions. I could understand Logan's pain. I could even smell Briella's underlying wickedness and cunning.
The last ingredient would of course be the twists. Really, they're all set out evenly in the book, ready to jump at you when you turn the page. But the ones in the beginning and middle are minor compared to the enormous one at the end.
And when I say this is a mystery novel, I mean it. It's a mystery novel through and through. It's omnipresent throughout the book.
Final Rating: 3.5/5 'Quite liked but could have been better'