Book Review: The Rosegiver

The Rosegiver
Author: Sandy Benitez
Published by: Createspace
Publication Date: 4 Feb 2016
Page Count: 303
Buy it at Barnes and Noble or Amazon
Source: ebook provided by author
Audience: Young Adult - Historical Fiction/Paranormal

The Rosegiver is set in late 1800s England, and is about Rachel, a teenage girl with very special abilities. She can read a person's body or health (be it emotional, mental, or physical) and help them to heal if possible. She moves in with her aunt to begin her work as a rosegiver, but once settled in her new home, she finds out the town is full of secrets. Girls the same age and with similar physical features as Rachel are going missing and the police have no leads. She meets a teenage boy who works for aunt, but also works at the graveyard, keeping an eye out for changelings or vampyres, destroying those he comes across. Rachel's life is turned upside down when she is drawn into this new world.

The synopsis to this story intrigued me as soon as I read it. It has a unique twist on psychic stories, as well as adding in the vampyre aspects to it. I liked the story line and enjoyed reading about Rachel and her new life and friends. The disappearances and vampyres add mystery to an already interesting read.

I wasn't overly fond of the writing style, even if I did enjoy the story itself. There was a lot of dialogue, and I felt there could have been a bit more narrative and description.  The author also had a tendency to be redundant in parts. One example: "As they reached the top of the stairs, Judith pointed out the first bedroom to the left. This bedroom was reserved for Rachel. 'This is your room, Rachel.'" I would remove the sentence, "This bedroom was reserved for Rachel." There's no need for it with the next sentence, but that's just my opinion.  There were some consistency and grammar issues as well that an editor should have caught.

There were several unanswered questions left after finishing this book. Thomas' resemblance to a man from Rachel's family history, the demon-possessed girl, Martha's past love, even John's getting hurt seemed to generate a mystery around it that didn't go anywhere. I would have liked the loose ends tied up.

I felt the characters were well established, and each their own. The author was able to convey each of their personalities in a way that it made it easy to decipher them. Each unique to themselves. That shows a lot of potential and talent in an author because I've read so many books where the characters seem identical to each other. I enjoyed getting to know Rachel, Ronan, John, and the other characters in the book. It would be fun to read more of them in the future.

One Last Thought: This could be a great series of books. Ronan, the Graveminder, and Rachel, the Rosegiver. I could easily see them solving mysteries together with their own unique abilities complimenting each other.

Favorite Thing About this Book: I love the idea of the Rosegivers, the backstory of Rachel's family and how they came to be.

First Sentence: On a crowded train platform in Waterloo Station, London, Rachel Harper sat silent yet observant as an owl on a wrought iron bench; her heels tapping the ground, waiting for the train that would take her away to a world she only knew from letters and postcards.

Favorite Character: Rachel

Least Favorite Character: master vampyre

It is the late 1800s, in rural England, seventeen-year-old Rachel Harper has been summoned by her aunt to assist with housekeeping duties at the family inn. She is also required to perform duties as a rosegiver, a messenger for the weak, the broken-hearted, and the dying. On her journey to Rosethorne Inn, she befriends a writer named John, who informs her about a rash of missing girls in Thistle Grove and nearby towns. He also discusses the topic of vampyres which intrigues Rachel.

Upon arriving at Thistle Grove, they are greeted by a young man, named Ronan, who is employed by Rachel’s aunt. Eventually, he divulges his primary profession, a graveminder, something that is both ancient and dangerous. Shortly after, strange occurrences take place and Rachel is haunted by frightening dreams. Will she discover the secret behind the missing girls and the strange dreams? And will she sacrifice years from her life if it means saving the life of someone she loves?


  1. Thanks for the fantastic review, Heather, and for noting the negative aspects as well. The unanswered questions I left opened for a reason; there may be another book to follow and I didn't want everything wrapped up too complete and final. I'm glad that you enjoyed the story.

    Sandy Hiss


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