Thursday, May 30, 2013

Descendant: Book Review and Author Interview

By: Nichole Giles
Published by: Rhemalda Publishing
Release date: May 1, 2013
Genre: YA paranormal
278 pages
Source: ARC kindly provided by publisher

This one is going to merit a re-read, friends. The rich texture of the lore that is being used, the fast pace of the action, and the array of characters are demanding that I spend a little more time in this universe; real life has made it difficult for me to give this novel the attention it deserves.

What I can tell you for sure: I love that Giles has combined typical elements of the paranormal genre, traditional legends, and fae tales into one epic love story that causes mortal peril that lasts for generations. There were bits and pieces of so many familiar stories that the premise felt very plausible and real. While reading, I struggled with whether to take my time and enjoy every morsel of the universe Giles built, or to race headlong through the action-packed plot. I took turns at both, as it turns out.

I can also tell you for sure that I really connected with the main character, right down to her questioning whether or not she should hop on a plane with the hot boy. She's a smart girl who doesn't let her friends or her emotions knock her around, and I respect her for that. As for the hot boy. . . he's a perfect gentleman who can still get your heart drumming in your chest with just a look. Even if you're not into this paranormal storyline, it's worth reading for the book boyfriend alone. :)

This is one of those books that you like when you've finished it, and you like more as you ponder afterwards. I will definitely be re-reading at my leisure this summer, and certainly will be anticipating a sequel. 

Summary from Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old Abigail Johnson is Gifted.

Blessed—or cursed—with Sight and Healing, Abby lives an unsettled life, moving from place to place and staying one step ahead of the darkness that hunts her. When she arrives in Jackson, Wyoming, she is desperate to maintain the illusion of normalcy, but she is plagued with visions of past lives mixed with frightening glimpses of her future. Then she meets Kye, a mysterious boy who seems so achingly familiar that Abby is drawn to him like he’s a missing piece of her own soul.

Before Abby can discover the reason for her feelings toward Kye, the darkness catches up to her and she is forced to flee again. But this time she’s not just running. She is fighting back with Kye at her side, and it’s not just Abby’s life at stake.

We are excited to welcome author Nichole Giles to the nest today. She's here to discuss her novel, Descendant, and her life as an author. Be sure to check out her other tour stops; tour information can be found at the bottom of the post.

For those who are following the tour- I apologize! I got some things turned around on my calendar and didn't quite get this post up as planned. I hope you enjoy Nichole's visit to Reading Lark anyway.

Paula @ Reading Lark: I always wonder what authors were like as children. Were you a storyteller, or did that come later?

Nichole:  As a child, I did tell stories, and I wrote them, too. At the time, I didn't understand that I wanted to write, or why I had so many stories happening in my head. I just knew i really enjoyed make-believe things. Luckily, I had six younger siblings to make believe with. I didn't actually decide to become a writer until I had children of my own and realized that I was still making up stories.    

Paula @ Reading Lark: What was the last book you read and loved?

Nichole: Oh wow. That's such a tough one. I love so many, and I read a lot. Off the top of my head, I very much enjoyed Lisa Magnum's Hourglass Door series, and Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. I'm a big fan of Elana Johnson's Possession series, too, and Brodi Ashton's Everneath. Divergent by Veronica Roth. And Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver series. Oh, and Ally Condie's Matched series. 

Paula @ Reading Lark: It sounds like you are a ravenous reader as well as an author. :) 
Which character in Descendant is most like you?

Nichole: I think probably Abby. The truth is that this book was a work in progress for so long, that she sort of became a part of me, and I of her. In the process, she ended up with some of my quirks and issues. Not on purpose. It's just who she turned out to be. 

Paula @ Reading Lark: Which scene in the book was most fun to write?

Nichole: The bus scene with Kye and Abby. That's where the whole story came alive for me. 

Paula @ Reading Lark: I think that scene was my favorite to read.
If this book was a dessert, what would it be?

Nichole: Brownies and Ben and Jerry's Island Paradise ice cream. (That flavor was discontinued years ago, but I still pine for it.)

Paula @ Reading Lark: What is your favorite bird?

Nichole:  When I lived in Utah, there was this Magpie that lived in our neighborhood. It was black, with a bright blue stripe of tail feathers, and there were days when I would swear that thing followed my car to the gym and back. We had a trellis with thick climbing vines, an it loved to perch up there and sing all spring long. I loved that bird. Now that I'm coastal Texas, I'm getting to know some more local birds. The other day, I was parked near the beach, and this very tall pinkish crane flew over my car, and perched on a fence directly in front of me. It stared at me for the longest time, as if it had no fear of me at all. And since it was taller than me, I get why. I am a fan of cranes now, too. Especially the endangered ones that live in my area. They are beautiful. 

Thanks so much for stopping by, Nichole!

Don't forget to check out Nichole's Giveaway!

Praise for DESCENDANT: "A hot new spin on paranormal, Descendant is refreshingly imaginative and powerful. I can't decide which was best -- piecing together Abby's sinister past or keeping up with her heartbreaking future. If you like your YA laced with melt-my-heart romance and a good helping of heart-pounding suspense, you'll love this book!" -- Michelle Davidson Argyle, author of The Breakaway

"Nichole Giles has crafted a story that breathes from the pages. Her characters are authentic, the action intense, with powerful emotions that will keep Descendant on your mind long after the book ends. Open your eyes to another facet of our world in Descendant and you'll be sucked into an adventure with Abby and Kye, that will explore the power of gifts, courage, and love. With top-notch writing, Giles has crafted a story that breathes from the pages." --Rachelle J. Christensen, award-winning author of Wrong Number and Caller ID

"Nichole Giles brings a fresh new voice and flawless writing technique to the world of Young Adult fiction. I was swept away to another place and never wanted to come back." --Tristi Pinkston, author of Turning Pages and the Secret Sisters mystery series

"This debut novel delivers in all the right ways, with heart-pounding action and a delicious romance that sweeps centuries. I loved it!" --Elana Johnson, author of Possession and Surrender

About Nichole Giles: Nichole Giles was born in Nevada, and moved with her parents to a number of cities in and around the West. Writing is her passion, but she also loves to spend time with her husband and four children, travel to tropical and exotic destinations, drive in the rain with the convertible top down, and play music at full volume so she can sing along.

Blog Tour Schedule can be found HERE.


  1. Thanks so much for the review and the interview! And thanks for participating!


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