|Recalled by Cambria Hebert|
February 15, 2013
Source: e-ARC (for honest review)
Love or Death? A simple question really. The choice seems obvious. But. What if you never knew love, what if your life was spent just trying to survive? What if you knew your fate before you were fully grown?
And then you died.
And you were given another chance. A better chance.
This new life depended upon one thing: your job. And so you agreed. You thought it would be simple. You thought it would be cut and dry.
It never is.
And now you are left holding the fate of someone else in the palm of your hand and you have to make the ultimate choice.
Love or Death?
My initial reaction after finishing this book was...Wow, that was beautiful. Now, two weeks after finishing and looking back at the book, I'm still really moved, by both the characters and the storyline. I can still say I loved it. Honestly, I'm having a difficult time finding the words to express my feelings about this book. When I received my copy, I hardly knew anything about what this book was about. I may have read the synopsis but that was it, and even the synopsis wasn't enough to fully prepare me for this book. I think I was expecting another boy meets girl from two different "worlds" and they'd fall in love and battle against the odds and live happily ever after book. Well, I was way off base, but in a good way.
This story is about Dex and Piper - Dex has a new job as a Death Escort, and his target, Piper, is not whom he was anticipating. I love that this was told in Dex and Piper's alternating POVs. I loved getting both their perspectives, because so much is happening separately and together in their worlds, and getting the extra insight was so important and essential in understanding their characters, their motives, their purpose. I'd hate to say too much and give away spoilers about the story, but I will say that, at least from the synopsis, you can see that this book deals with life and death, and even more specifically, what would you do with a second chance at life, but a new life that would cost you more than you imagined. Is this new life worth it? What will it cost you, or cost others, especially those you love?
I loved watching Dex grow in his character and his humanity, as he battled the questions that plagued him and the decisions he was being forced to make. The potential consequences of his actions and decisions were harsh and scary. I felt for him, for his upbringing, for his opportunities and temptations, and then for his relationship with Piper. His bravery and compassion were commendable and beautiful. I also liked Piper's realness and her tenacity. She was a good person and didn't shy away from pursuing the truth. The relationship between Dex and Piper developed at a good yet tentative pace, but I felt that was appropriate considering their weird circumstances. Their feelings felt real and honest. My heart went out to them in their situation. There were also some great secondary characters that helped round out the story.
I didn't know what was going to happen ultimately and how the events of the novel were eventually going to be played out. But I do know that my attention was captured from the very beginning, from Dex and Piper's very first encounter, and the author kept me on my toes. My attention stayed with the novel until the very end. This was a book I didn't want to put down. The pacing was good, the characters were great, the plot was unique, and the ending was beautiful. Let me say that again...the ending was absolutely beautiful! I loved the journey Ms. Hebert took us on. (And as a side note, I loved the definitions used as chapter titles - what a great idea and insightful as well.) I see that this is the first book as part of a series and, though I'm unsure where the next book will go, I will most definitely be reading it and additionally checking out Ms. Hebert's other novels.