Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Jennifer Estep's Dark Frost!

I've seen so many freaky things since I started attending Mythos Academy last fall. I know I'm supposed to be a fearless warrior, but most of the time, I feel like I'm just waiting for the next Bad, Bad Thing to happen. Like someone trying to kill me--again.

Everyone at Mythos Academy knows me as Gwen Frost, the Gypsy girl who uses her psychometry magic to find lost objects--and who just may be dating Logan Quinn, the hottest guy in school. But I'm also the girl the Reapers of Chaos want dead in the worst way. The Reapers are the baddest of the bad, the people who murdered my mom. So why do they have it in for me? It turns out my mom hid a powerful artifact called the Helheim Dagger before she died. Now, the Reapers will do anything to get it back. They think I know where the dagger is hidden, but this is one thing I can't use my magic to find. All I do know is that the Reapers are coming for me--and I'm in for the fight of my life.


For those who aren't already on the Mythos bandwagon - stop, turn around and get yourself to the nearest station!  This is one thrill-ride worth taking, satisfaction guaranteed!  Jennifer Estep, known for her Bigtime and Elemental Assassin adult series, has created something new and enthralling for Young Adults and Big Kids alike.  With two and a half predecessors, new readers will want to start at the beginning so as not to miss one juicy, exciting detail of the wild adventures of Gwen Frost as she makes her way through the fantastical world of Mythos Academy.

Some of the most enticing aspects of this series are it's well crafted and realistic characters.  Gwen Frost feels very much like a regular teen girl: she likes some of her classes, hates her after school job, loves her grandma's cookies and has some angsty boyfriend drama - oh and a rare magical talent of psychometry (the ability to know an object’s history just by touching it.)  Her friends are all descendants of mythical of ancient warriors races like Spartans, Valkyries, Amazons.  All are being trained to fight an ongoing battle to save the world for them destructive forces of Loki and his evil followers, the Reapers.  

Full of action and suspense, the story line is creative and captivating - one of those true page turners that make both child and adult want to read way past bedtime and into the night.  And amongst the mysterious search for ancient relics which may tip the balance of this great hidden war, are very human interactions between teens and their peers: some funny, some painful and some sweetly romantic.  The stuttering romance between Gypsy Gwen and Spartan Logan takes center stage in bits and snippets - not enough to deem this a YA romance and with as much battling as there is, this mostly Urban Fantasy series should be equally appealing to both YA genders!  

A true series, Dark Frost takes the building story arc of the previous books to the next level.  It is a rare thing to find a series where the subsequent books trump the previous ones!  Honestly, having fallen in love with Touch of Frost, I was amazed to feel Kiss of Frost was better.  Dark Frost takes all that clever banter, those intense battle scenes and tantalizing mystery suspense elements and holds the readers in it's complete thrall.  Destines begin to unfold, identities are more deeply developed and the reality of just how devastating Loki's release will be makes this latest installment truly pivotal!  

Jennifer Estep truly demonstrates her ability to keep the bar raised for YA series. Clever dialogue, believable strong characters who act as great role models, action/suspense/drama (without being too obscenely gory - let's face it, battles leave blood), Mythos Academy remains on this reviewer's auto-buy list!   

RATING: Five chocolate dipped strawberries and anything Grandma Frost wants to throw in for good measure!!!!!

This book was given to us by the author for an unbiased review.  Many thanks!
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