Monday, July 23, 2012

Frost Tour Stop: Review & Giveaway

Kate Avery Ellison
Series: Frost, #1
Release date: April 18th 2012

In the icy, monster-plagued world of the Frost, one wrong move and a person could end up dead—and Lia Weaver knows this better than anyone. After monsters kill her parents, she must keep the family farm running despite the freezing cold and threat of monster attacks or risk losing her siblings to reassignment by the village Elders. With dangers on all sides and failure just one wrong step away, she can’t afford to let her emotions lead her astray. So when her sister finds a fugitive bleeding to death in the forest—a young stranger named Gabe—Lia surprises herself and does the unthinkable.

She saves his life.

Giving shelter to the fugitive could get her in trouble. The Elders have always described the advanced society of people beyond the Frost, the “Farthers,” as ruthless and cruel. But Lia is startled to find that Gabe is empathetic and intelligent…and handsome. She might even be falling in love with him.

But time is running out. The monsters from the forest circle the farm at night. The village leader is starting to ask questions. Farther soldiers are searching for Gabe. Lia must locate a secret organization called the Thorns to help Gabe escape to safety, but every move she makes puts her in more danger.

Is compassion—and love—worth the risk?
*A copy was provided by Kate Avery Ellison for review purposes*

Original and… cold! This book is cold! Snow, ice, frost - it's a very chilly, dreary setting that, coming from Canada, I can easily relate to. I know how it feels to be snowed in after a storm. To be constantly cold during a storm (even though my house is sweltering). So although the characters could have been fleshed out, and the plot intensified, the setting is very vividly depicted, and it's clearly an incredibly unique premise that has a lot of potential. I think the book may have simply been too short.

This first book in The Frost Chronicles feels like one big long introduction. We're placed in a notably eerie, well built world in which we're portrayed an isolated village surrounded by deep forests where deadly creatures come out at night. It's not safe to go out once the sun has set - ever. This gloomy setting is made worse by the fact that they unable to leave their town, because beyond the forest are the Farthers - vicious humans living in a cruel advanced society. The brilliant detailing skillfully describes the colourless, depressing state of their world, as well as how their community is managed with quotas and rations. It's fascinating and well thought-out, getting me to feel the cold, the hopelessness, the uneasiness. Though well built, the book is missing electricity. I easily felt the hardships, but I can't say I was very perturbed by the events that occurred in the story. I kept waiting for the big moment when I would feel emotionally invested, the moment when things go from story building, to suspenseful and thrilling - neither came in full force. I wouldn't call the suspense nonexistent, it just wasn't to the depth I was hoping for. This isn't helped by the slow pacing; three quarters of the book in, I was still wondering of the plot's intention.

The characters, while not unlikeable, are not all-together remarkable. In exception to our main character Lia who is a strong, solid female lead, determinedly taking charge of her family's well being after her parent's death, I felt the characters lacked a bit of charm; their personalities hazy, failing to come to life completely. I felt the same in respect to the romance. It lacks the necessary chemistry to believe in the deep attraction they apparently feel for each other. Fortunately for me, the romance makes sparse appearances.

With intriguing developments towards the end, I'm certainly curious about the story's procession from this point on. The plot may not be mind-blowing, but the telling is very effective to give the setting an expressive feel. With a few more pages it could have been less of a "beginning only" novel. However, with a large potential, Frost is perfect for those who love their books dark and ominous.

3 Hot Espressos

When I was six years old, I dreamed up my first story--the tale of a hidden, prehistoric island complete with violent winter monsoons and vicious, man-eating dinosaurs. It was my first taste of storytelling, and it was like a drug. Making up stories became my passion, and I've never stopped since.  This is me! I'm now the author of several novels and short stories, and you can find more about my work in the tabs at the top of this blog.  I live with my husband and two cats near Atlanta, GA.

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For the blog tour, Kate Avery Ellison is offering copies of Frost for giveaway. 10 ebook copies and 2 signed copies are up for grabs!

Giveaway for the ebook copies are open internationally
Giveaway for the signed copies are open to US addresses only.
Ends July 31st, 2012
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