My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Actual rating of 3.5
It’s Samhain, and the month long celebrations have begun in the town of Mystic Hallows, the home of the descendants of the 13 original Salem witches. Cassie Howe is getting ready to begin her celebrations, along with her cousin, Aunt and Uncle, when she starts to sense an evil presence in the town. A dark witch is causing trouble for Cassie and Co, and Cassie doesn’t know if she’ll be able to protect herself and those closest to her for much longer. Enter four mysterious men, Ryder, Damien, Gabriel and Kayde, they have arrived to assist Cassie even though she has no idea who they are. They also find themselves incredibly attracted to her. Can they hold off their lust long enough for them to defeat the foe that threatens Cassie’s very existence?
I don’t mind a good reverse harem story, I like seeing how the author makes the dynamics of the group work. I did enjoy this story, but once again I feel like the flirtatious and sexual comments were very forced, and weren’t really necessary within the story line itself. I feel like a lot of Reverse Harem authors feel the need to make the sexy times happen straight away or the reader will lose focus, for me, this is not the case. Take for example another series I read that turned into the ultimate reverse harem – Anita Blake by Laurell K Hamilton – there was no sex in that series until book 6, and while it was incredibly frustrating, I feel like it really built a solid foundation for the relationship that were forming. A lot of reverse harem books that I’m reading lately, characters are falling in love instantly, the sex is happening almost from word go, and I just feel like it cheapens the story. I know that I’m probably in the minority with this, it’s just an irk of mine.
I found the plot of this story to be actually, surprisingly really good. I was pleasantly surprised at the story itself and felt that it was well rounded and ticked all the boxes. I enjoyed the world building, Mystic Hallows has a certain charm to it that makes me want to BE there. There wasn’t really a mystery as such to the story, as we’re told pretty early on who the culprit was by Cassie. The love interests are done well, all four men are incredibly different from one another and they each have their own noticeably separate voice in the story which is good. Though we don’t meet one of them until basically the end, I liked the attitude of this one probably the most. I found the other three guys to come across a bit desperate, so the fourth guy was a welcomed change. As I said earlier, the sexual comments came across a bit forced and I felt like they detracted from the story rather than add anything of substance. I feel like the author needs to let the relationships grow on their own.
From what I can work out, this series is actually a serialised work, so this is actually counted as episode 1. The length of the story was great, if it were any longer it would have felt fleshed out rather than necessary, as it was the story felt like it was dragging a little bit for me. There’s a lot happening in the story but it still felt like there wasn’t really much going on at times.
I love the author’s take on the Salem families and the story she has created here. I’ve always had a fascination with the history of Salem as well as the witch burnings and the town hysteria, so it was pretty much a guarantee that I’d pick this series up.
All in all, I felt that this was a good start to what is promising to be an interesting serial. I do believe I will carry on with the next book and if I’m still enjoying it, I’ll no doubt continue onto the rest. If you like reverse harem I’d suggest giving this one a go. Though in this instalment there is no sexy time, so don’t be disappointed as you’ve been forewarned haha.