Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Sisters of Blood & Spirit ~ Kady Cross (earc) review [@alterkates @harlequinteen]

Sisters of Blood and Spirit (#1)
Harlequin Teen
March 31, 2015
288 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from TBD/or Amazon

Wren Noble is dead—she was born that way. Vibrant, unlike other dead things, she craves those rare moments when her twin sister allows her to step inside her body and experience the world of the living.

Lark Noble is alive but often feels she belongs in the muted Shadow Lands—the realm of the dead. Known as the crazy girl who talks to her dead sister, she doesn't exactly fit in with the living, though a recent suicide attempt and time in a psych ward have proved to her she's not ready to join her sister in the afterlife.

Now the guy who saved Lark's life needs her to repay the favor. He and his friends have been marked for death by the malevolent spirit of a vicious and long-dead serial killer, and the twins—who should know better than to mess with the dead—may be their only hope of staying alive.
So, I love the movie Casper and am almost always looking for a ghost story I can love in the same way and/or where I can find some similarities between the two stories. Kady Cross's Sisters of Blood and Spirit both is that and is so much more. Sort of Casper mixed with Supernatural or Shutter and I love it.

Wren Noble is a ghost. Lark Noble, her twin sister, is alive. Only Lark can see Wren and while she knows Wren is real enough that no one's been able to convince her she's an imaginary friend it hasn't left her looking normal in anyone's eyes. She's the freak that talks to her dead sister.

An attempt to join Wren nearly succeeded, nearly killed Lark. But someone saved her. Someone who now needs her - and maybe Wren's - help.Wren may be a 'nice' ghost but not all of them are and it's a very dangerous one Lark must now deal with to save them.

Sisters of Blood and Spirit has ghosts, it has sisters, it has that awkward/weird/misunderstood new girl, it has romance, it has some great boys, it has sweet girls and catty girls, potential friendships and some self discovery. I really do love it.

The relationship between Lark and Wren is unique and a fantastic foundation for the story. One is dead and one alive but they are still, absolutely, part of each other's lives and worlds. How that has all effected Lark's life is a perfect setup for how she views anyone trying to be nice to her, to befriend her. Her reticence to accept them, accept their motives, gives us time to get to know the other characters. We are able to see what they think of Lark - of Wren.

All of this while they battle a ghost who was - who is? - a serial killer. The danger uncovers things that may have otherwise stayed hidden, reveals things about the characters and who they are - or maybe should be - to each other.

I love the relationships in Sisters of Blood and Spirit, some were more standard and similar to something from another novel, yet when you add in Wren's presence, her inclusion in Lark's life, everything becomes different and fresh. I really enjoyed seeing the progression, the growth, of Lark's character. Who she was when the novel started made perfect sense with what her life has been - seeing/hearer ghost sister along with how everyone has reacted to that over the years - but the events of the story and the introduction of the other characters really impact her.

Wren has her own development as well. We don't learn quite as much as I may have liked about the Shadowlands, the ghosty land she also lives - but I think that really fit the story and her character. As she discovers more about it and herself, I hope readers will also learn more in the next book(s).

I can't wait to see where the girls' characters go in the next book, what happens with their relationships, friendships and their sibling relationship, as well. I'm also looking forward to more spirit involvement. Kady Cross came up with something very creative in Lark and Wren and I think we're only beginning to see all that the sisters can and will do (in the human world, in the spirit world, for themselves, for each other, for those they care about).

I am so very much looking forward to the continuation of this series!

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