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Review: After the Fall by Carissa Lusk

Title: After the Fall
Author: Carissa Lusk
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: BookBaby
Release Date: July 8, 2016
Source: Review Request
Rating: 4
Heat Rating: 1
Reviewed by: Vashti

Amity cries out into the darkness that surrounds her, hoping for a solitary voice to provide direction; she hears two.

Amity knows she loves Alexander, yet the loneliness brought on by the miles that separate them can only be curbed by the cryptic affection of Marcus Riley. She can’t understand the strange familiarity she finds in the wild blue of Marcus’s eyes, but she will soon learn his secret.

Plagued with dreams and memories of lives beyond her own, a tragic fate will emerge from the ashes of a love scorned. Eventually, she will discover the dark truth that will leave her running for her life, and she will learn who sacrificed everything to save it.

New author, Carissa Lusk, has written an outstanding debut NA Paranormal novel.  I was hesitant at first to review this book because I'm not a big fan of YA so I was thinking how is New Adult any different? Is this going to be along the lines of Twilight? But then I remembered I freakin' loved Twilight.  I actually read the entire series in one week. So here we go!

Amity Day is a college student who meets the love of her life, Alex, at her high school senior prom. There is an immediate magnetic pull and a very believable intense love bond after the first date. Forward several years later, Alex and Amity are separated by 400 miles while she's in her junior year of college and Alex is in law school. Amity is not very sociable, she excludes herself from extra curricular activities (even though she is a sorority sister). She is consumed by an emptiness since Alex is no longer around and it's almost like she can't operate or breathe, and only lives for her nightly calls from Alex.  What's a girl to do, how is she to combat the loneliness?

In walks Marcus Riley and he's here to save the girl, and get this love triangle train moving.

Amity finds herself in a sweet little situation that I think many women would die for. She's got two gorgeous men vying for her affection, both of them like loyal lapdogs without ever giving other women so much as a Wham Bam Thank You Mam!

Miss Lusk does a good job of setting up the scene and she gives a short description of each character as they are introduced.  The paranormal aspect is hinted at early on in the book but  it really isn't in the forefront until the middle and the ending of the book. What was really cleverly done were the literary clues scattered throughout the book. References were given to "A Pair of Blue Eyes" by Thomas Hardy, which if you've read more than one book by Thomas Hardy you know what usually happens to his heroines, Othello, Romeo  & Juliette, Somewhere I Never Traveled, "The Persistence of Memory" by Salvador Dali(which is actually a painting). These scattered references were like finding clues to solve a murder mystery.  I found myself wondering if the author was a literary major. You gain insight into the characters based on the literary references, but they by no means give away the outcome of the book.

My favorite character was Marcus, once he entered the picture I honestly could not put the book down. I read till 3:00 am.  I simply had to finish this story I was that drawn in. Marcus is extremely quick-witted and most of the funny dialogue in the book, and there was quite a bit, was between Marcus and Amity.  They joked around, teased and laughed a lot.  There was an ease and flow in their conversation. There is also a really strong, intense, enigmatic chemistry, and romanticism between the two of them that Amity can't explain nor dismiss. And unlike Alex,  Marcus is not afraid to act on his passions. The book is written in 1st person, which I don't mind at all, but I would have loved to get in Marcus's head and understand where he was coming from and what motivated his actions at times.

Miss Lusk has done a brilliant job of creating genuine feelings between each character, yet it seemed at times that Amity's feelings were based on whoever she was with at the moment.

Throughout the entire book, I kept wondering how is the paranormal tied in? I won't say how; you'll have to read the book yourself.  This was a paranormal genre that I have never read before but it was quite interesting and I am looking forward to the coming prequel.

Miss Lusk has quite brilliantly created a story in which you genuinely feel the heartache and joys with each character. You find yourself pulling for one or rooting for the other. Some of the romantic build-up and  tension was so intense that I felt it in my gut, but I will forewarn you that's where it stops! This is COMPLETELY  PG without the 13.  So if you're looking for anything beyond that, you will be sorely disappointed. However, the emotions of the characters and mystery were enough to keep you interested and reading to see where all of this was going to culminate. This was quite a nice break from the many Historical Romance, Highlander or Vampire books that I usually review.

I highly recommend this book to readers of any genre of Paranormal,  Romance, NA,  Love Triangles and just a  Clean Romantic Read.

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