Saturday, February 23, 2013

Review of Rising by Stephanie Judice and International Giveaway

Rising (saga of the seti #1) I'm very excited to introduce this talented new writer, Stephanie Judice and a new International Giveaway!

Goodreads Book description: Having waited a millennium to return to the fertile feeding ground of earth, the dark giants break through a portal and storm out into the world in the guise of a massive hurricane—famished and fierce. Across the ocean, seventeen-year-old Gabriel Goddard is being plagued by terrifying nightmares about creatures that singe and burn the flesh then absorb the life energy of humans and devour the ashes. A chance meeting with Clara Dunaway immediately distracts Gabe from bad dreams. He has always had a sort of sixth sense—to feel the emotions of others around him. Clara’s presence numbs his other sense, nearly knocking him into a hypnotic state. Bewildered and fascinated, he is lured in by her. When Clara finally confesses that she has a similar gift to see auras around people, a spark flames between them, ignited by a paranormal force. Fate soon reveals that there is a higher purpose for their attraction. Along with Jeremy, the head-bangin’ metal head; Ben, the air-headed golden boy; Melanie, the kind- hearted Creole; and the old hermit named Homer, they must face this enemy as one. Discovering that they are descended from an ancient clan of Norse warriors, they awaken their dormant powers, preparing for the dark giants' imminent invasion of their home. A shadow of darkness veils the land. Will the Setti rise to fulfill their long-awaited destiny?

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

My Review:  I was asked by the author to read and review her book Rising, the first in a trilogy (Saga of the Setti).

Rising by Stephanie Judice is a riveting read about two main protagonists, Gabe (the token hot guy) and Clara, the outspoken girl. We are first introduced to Gabe who has the power to sense others emotions, and he falls for Clara. Together, they realize something ominous is heading their way and they work together to figure out how to save their loved ones and their town.

I don't want to give away too much because the secrets of this novel are very fun to figure out. I loved Clara as a protagonist, and there are a strong set of supporting characters, including the terrific Jeremy, the ever happy Ben, and the fiercely intellectual Mel. I have to say that I was less enamored with Gabe, possibly because the other characters are more interesting when placed in direct comparison. I thought the first half of the novel was extremely strong. We have great development of the world and the characters, and a self contained plot even though it is a trilogy. We have growth and development of both protagonists through their relationships and what they learn. The darkness that they fight is scary indeed-- maybe a combination of dementors from Harry Potter and demons from Buffy.

There were a few minor issues I had with the book. First, while I do love smart teenagers, I felt that the parents were painted as extremely one dimensional especially Clara's mom, which becomes more important later on. Also, I felt like the first half was stronger than the second half, as it was more centered on the characters than the action.

That said, this is a very strong first novel, and I really enjoyed reading it.

Stephanie has just come out with the second novel, which is just as or better than the first novel! Stay tuned for my review of her sequel and also the great author interview she sent me! But for now, sign up to enter this great giveaway.

  a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Not joining the giveaway:

    I honestly find it weird when parents take a backseat in YA books. That never happens in real life and it strips a layer of relatability in the story when writers do this.

    1. I have to agree-- it's definitely something I always look for in YA. One of my favorite examples of where the parents are written very well and authentically is Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John.

  2. Thank you for such a fantastic giveaway! I am really interested in 'Rising' and finding out more about Stephanie Judice's work, and so i have connected with her on Goodreads. This really does sound like a most interesting read & i am so pleased that you have drawn my attention to it!!

    Thank you Christina. x