Two years ago, Scarlet awoke in the forest alone, afraid, and unable to remember anything. Lost and confused, her life was a mystery...until she met a boy with a familiar voice.
Gabriel Archer has a voice from her past, and Scarlet's determined to remember why. She immerses herself in his life only to discover he has a brother he's kept hidden from her: Tristan Archer.
Upon meeting Tristan, Scarlet's world becomes even more muddled. While she's instinctively drawn to Gabriel, she's impossibly drawn to Tristan--and confused out of her mind. As she tries to piece together her history Scarlet realizes her past...might just be the death of her.
I totally picked up the first book in this series because the glossy purple and black cover called to me. The almost alliteration of A’s in the title pleased my nerdy side, and the elegant looking woman on the cover was someone I wouldn’t mind living vicariously through. Already sold on the aesthetic appeal of the cover, I read the blurb on the back and gave a little squeal at the name Tristan (one of our main characters). The 14-year-old girl in me who still wears wolf shirts and buys her clothes at Academy was bouncing on her toes. My obsession to read anything with the words Avalon in it, or Tristan (really, any other name related to British fairytales) was ready to be indulged. This series, in fact, does not have anything to do with the Arthurian tales of yore, but the relationship between Tristan and Scarlet is definitely the stuff of legends.
At the beginning of this tale, we are imagined into a Kissing Festival. (Yes, I said Kissing Festival). This aspect of the book was a little tawdry for my liking and I was prepared to bail. Having already purchased the book, I decided to read on and allow myself to fully suspend disbelief and all mental criticisms. I was massively rewarded for making that decision. This series has won a special place in my heart.
We begin the series as Scarlet, our vixen on the cover. Scarlet has had a curious couple of years since she can’t remember ANYTHING about her life beyond that point. She has been residing with a foster mom while attending high school with her bubbly best friend Heather. Scarlet and Heather are polar opposites, which proves to be an entertaining formula throughout this series. Within the first few chapters of book one, we also meet Gabriel and Tristan Archer. It has been my experience that you can never go wrong with two hot, twin brothers in a story. Double your pleasure, double your fun. Or in this case, double your trouble. A strange and cryptic triangle forms between Gabriel, Tristan, and Scarlet, but this is not your by-the-book love affair. It wasn’t by coincidence that Gabriel and Tristan crossed Scarlet’s path, they’ve been keeping an eye on her, and Scarlet’s quiet Georgia life is about to be rocked.
My enjoyment of this series increased with each book. The story was fresh and different from anything else I have recently read, and the romantic build up yields satisfying pay off by the end. Book number #2 was my favorite with medieval flashbacks that give us delicious insight to the mystery surrounding Scarlet’s amnesia and enigmatic pull to the Archer brothers. We are also immersed into the intense thoughts of Tristan and Gabriel alternately throughout the series, and the effect on the reader is absorbing. The dialogue in this trilogy is serious laugh out loud material, and I couldn’t get enough of the sarcastic banter between the Archer brothers. Every book played out like a television show you would see on the ABC Family channel, and I have my fingers crossed that I will be seeing this series on some kind of screen soon.
EPIC Love? Check.
Awesome characters? Check.
Great writing? Check.
Crazy Historians? Check.
Enchanted trees? Check.
Evil stepmother? Check.
Bad ass battle scenes? Check.
Something for everyone? Double check.
P.S. Kissing festivals really do exist. I googled it. 🙂
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Classical music nerd by day, freelance writer and blogger by night. When I review books, I don't dish out and rehash every character and detail. What's the point of reading a book if you give most of the deets away in a review??? My reviews are more about my impressions and over all experience with the book. I am also a world-renowned armchair psychologist, and love to psychoanalyze authors.