Early Review: Autumn Thorns by Yasmine Galenorn

, by Kt Clapsadl

Autumn Thorns by Yasmine Galenorn
Whisper Hollow #1

In an all-new series, New York Times bestselling author Yasmine Galenorn invites readers to Whisper Hollow, where spirits walk among the living and the lake never gives up her dead…

Fifteen years ago, I ran away from Whisper Hollow, Washington, a small town on Crescent Lake in the Olympic Peninsula. But truth is, if you were born here, you can never really leave. I’m Kerris Fellwater, and when I returned, I inherited my grandmother’s house—and her gift. As a spirit shaman, it’s my responsibility to drive the dead back to their graves, because around Whisper Hollow, people—and secrets—don’t always stay buried.

When I was little, I was told my mother ran off. But now it looks like she was murdered. With the help of my mysterious neighbor Bryan, we begin to unravel the mystery of her disappearance, and in doing so, unearth a dark force seeking to bury Whisper Hollow. Now I must work with the dead, rather than against them, because our enemy will do whatever she can to destroy the town, and she means to start with me.

While the premise and the characters of AUTUMN THORNS intrigued me, the immense world building kept me from enjoying this book as much as I would like. I'm all for a complex and unique world, but in this case I felt things were a bit too on the "craft" side. I'm a big fan of the author, and follow her various networks, so I know that she is very immersed in the magical world, and beliefs, and that knowledge showed in this book. Unfortunately it showed so much that it made it incredibly hard to keep up for lamens like myself. There were so many different magical aspects, deities, and ritualistic methods portrayed in this book that my head was spinning. That being said, as I started to get a grasp on the rules of the world by the end, I do have high hopes for the rest of the series. 

World building woes aside, I greatly enjoyed the characters in AUTUMN THORNS. Kerris is a no non-sense, kick butt heroine that you couldn't help loving from the start. She's thrust back into a town and duty she never wanted to return to, and yet she accepts it all with grace. Even better yet, when other powers that be, be they good or evil, attempt to bully her, she stands firm despite having no real idea what's she's doing. I really admired her for that. Add in a yummy hero who may have sparked a bit more of instalove than my tastes prefer at times, but seems to be everything Kerris needs, and I was sold. 

All in all while the world building bogged the book down a bit for me, I see a great amount of potential for this series, and I'm eager to see where things lead. If you're a fan of urban fantasy with a spicy romance, then this one is definitely worth a look or two.

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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