Title: Tortured Souls
Author: Keigh Leigh Wheaton
Series: The Orion Circle #1
Publisher: Sea Dragon Press
Date of Publication: July 29, 2014
Before reading Tortured Souls, I hadn’t read many paranormal books, though I’d like to say that one of my debuts into the genre was a pleasant surprise! To start, I have a short summary:
This book follows a 15 year old girl named Kassandra (although she goes by Kacie and CiCi) who leads a relatively normal life, living with her father, Adam, her brother, Gavin and her super-loving dog, Kodiak. Oh, fairly normal except for the fact that she is clairvoyant meaning she can see and communicate with spirits, both good and, unfortunately, very very evil. Since early childhood, she has recognized her “gift” (as not so much a gift, but a curse really) and shared this information with her parents. That very day, her mother fled the house and never returned – something Adam, her father, will always blame her for. When she starts going on early-morning runs with her longtime crush, the very dreamy and brave Logan, she is introduced into a whole new paranormal world which she had no idea she was living in – The Orion Circle only accepts select and elite individuals. Soon Kacie is thrown headfirst into this world, not really knowing what she’s doing….
I loved the idea of this elite group, especially the fact that it was under Kacie’s nose the whole time and she had absolutely no idea. Although, I’m glad she ran into the group when she did because I think it was perfect timing. Sure, she may have not needed to go through a lot of the crap she did as a young-adult if she learned how to control her powers earlier but those experiences made her that much stronger and (hope this doesn’t sound selfish haha) but also, a more interesting character. Her past made her unique and that something that I definitely admire as a reader. Wheaton achieved that through Kacie. I’m not going to lie though, she annoyed me at times. Up until the near-end of the novel, she was always crying, jumping at the sound tree branch noises, tearing up at this or that, looking to Logan for comfort for everything and it kind of got irritating. Another thing I admire as a reader, is a strong lead character and I wasn’t too impressed with her. I am looking forward to the second Orion Circle novel to see how she matures and grows as a young adult which is what I saw towards the end of this one.
Gavin, Kacie’s brother, and Raven, another member of The Orion Circle, were probably two of my favourite characters. Gavin mostly because he was the typical older brother who acted “too cool” to care about his little sister, but in times of need, his sweet, caring side really showed. Maybe it’s because I’ve always wanted an older brother exactly like that but either way, despite the small role he had, I fell in love with him! I want to see more of him in the next novel! Raven on the other hand, is a spunky and sassy gal who doesn’t stand for anything and. I. loved. it. so. much. Her intelligence makes her seem much older than she is – I wanted Kacie to learn a couple things from her haha 😛
Ok, and let me talk about the fact that this really is a creepy book. At times when some scenes were being described and these characters were in risky situations, I was nervous, scared and worried to turn my *electronic* page. Kimber Leigh Wheaton does such a great job at setting description and plot development that the progression of the story doesn’t feel rushed at all – it’s just right. There were no plot holes and all the main questions I had were answered, which I’d like to give a big shoutout to KLW for that. *props* There were some underlying plot lines that added depth to the story, which I was very pleased with.
Spirits are evidently a huge part of this book which I loved because it’s one of those topics that has me instantly intrigued. KLW does a great job of introducing readers into the paranormal world – take it from someone who has read so much YA fiction, I was not bored. The haunted mansions (literally haunted, and some – er – not so much) the investigation of decades of murders etc etc were just all done effectively. As a reader I didn’t feel deprived of any information. The chase for the Foxblood Demon was an intense one.
And finally. Logan and Kacie: this years hottest couple. Literally. He sounds so dreamy and I mean, I’d love to have my own Logan. I loved how he was always there for Kacie and didn’t take her away from her friends – he acted as a support system for her which at the time, the poor girl desperately needed. I’m glad he was a part of the whole ‘introducing Kacie into the real spirit world’ thing.
**Sidenote** This cover is absolutely gorgeous!!
If you like paranormal fantasy with some sweet, sweet romance,this is a perfect book for you, so go out and get it! I’m thinking of doing a Character Discussion on Kacie so check back soon if you’re interested!
As a final note, I’d like to thank Patchwork Press for sending me this great book through Netgalley for review – it’s greatly appreciated. This in no way impacted my review and overall rating.