Dark Promise (Between Worlds #1) by Julia Crane and Talia Jager
YA paranormal romance*paperback & ebook, 176 pages
Published July 28th 2012 by Valknut Press, LLC
Rylie has it all - great friends, dream boy, loving family. But on the eve of her sixteenth birthday, her perfect little world shatters. A stranger claiming to be her real mother appears with a secret: Rylie is a faery whose powers will be unleashed on her birthday. Captured and forced into a new life, Rylie struggles to keep everything she loves and discovers a terrifying truth: some promises cannot be broken.
Julia Crane is the author of the Coexist: Keegan’s Chronicles. She has a bachelors degree in criminal justice. Julia has believed in magical creatures since the day her grandmother first told her an Irish tale. Growing up her mother greatly encouraged reading and using your imagination. Although she’s spent most of her life on the US east coast, she currently lives in Dubai with her husband and three children.
I'm a paranormal fan and love stories about the fey. Give me a fresh take on a tired lore and craft unique stories like authors Julie Kagawa (The Iron Fey), Holly Black (Modern Faerie Tales), Janni Lee Simner (Faerie) or my top favorite, Melissa Marr's Lovely series and I am ecstatic. Then there are other stories that don't add too much to the fairy folklore but are entertaining. Dark Promise, the first book in the Between Worlds series, didn't really expand upon the fey genre but it sure was an addictive, entertaining read.
Like the book summary says, Rylie is a teen girl who has everything she needs: two parents who love her, great friends and a loving boyfriend, Adam (this name has become popular in YA, first Mia in If I Stay and Where She Went had an awesome Adam, now Rylie). As her sixteenth birthday approaches, she develops these terrible headaches and has nightmares. A strange woman shows up at her house with a wild tale about Riley being her daughter, Oleander, and says they're fairies. Rylie's parents are shocked but the teen feels there's some truth to the stranger's words. Before you can blink, Rylie is sixteen, has wings, is using glamour and is then whisked to a dark fairy lord's castle to fulfill a debt her father made when she was born. She is a very special and rare light fairy and the dark lord, Varwik, wants her power. Kidnapped, Rylie faces the idea of either marrying Varwik's son, Kallan, or dying. Raised as a human, what's a teen suddenly thrust into an otherworldly realm to do?
Rylie comes across as being real--from her OCD tendencies, loves her parents, adores her boyfriend and her best friend, Sierra--she's smart yet vulnerable and I found her easy to like. Adam is a nice guy but I found myself leaning toward Kallan the more I read. When forced to live with Varwik, Rylie/Orleander begins spending time with Kallan. At first they don't like each other. Who would when being told you HAVE to marry someone you don't know? But as Rylie begins to question him, she notices how handsome he is, how her wings flutter, and how she feels around him. Though their growing relationship is predictable, I was sucked into her story. What I wanted to see was more description about the world of the dark fae she saw on her walks and the creatures that inhabit the land (besides the piskies). There was a nice twist in regards to Rylie's ability later on and I loved the change at the end.
It was refreshing to read about a sixteen year old who has her big birthday party at home, doesn't receive a car as a present, and has two parents who love and talk to her like regular people. What a nice change in YA. As for the romance, I loved it, from the small touches Adam places on her neck to the strolls with Kallan, I felt these scenes. The pacing was fast and when Dark Promise ended, I realized I didn't want it to. Now I really want the second book.
Cover comment: Not feeling this cover or liking it at all. The art is almost middle grade-ish.
Book cource: I received a promotional copy in return for my honest review.