The plantation wasn’t normal.
Belvedere Rise should have been a safe haven against the gangs. Nestled in the deep woods of Louisiana, Izobel and DesdeMona found it abandoned and had claimed it as their own. What they assume to be a new beginning quickly becomes a prison when they unlock something ethereal, alive, and dangerous.
Things begin to fall apart around them. The poverty-stricken people of the nearby town adapt in a way that keeps the girls constantly terrified, and forces them to do things they would have never imagined. As their time passes at the plantation, tensions rise.
When captivating new strangers arrive at their front door, the hostile world they knew becomes something else entirely.
Written through two separate points of view--that of sweet, hopeful Izobel, and strategic book worm DesdeMona--Auctumnalis is a dystopian-fantasy novel with smatterings of hope, violence, drama and romance spread throughout.
I received a copy of this novel in return for an honest review.
First off let me say the dedication in this novel sets the tone for the whole book.
We lovingly dedicate this book to our Heroes. J.K. Rowling, Quentin Tarantino, and last but not least, Tears for Fears.
This story is told from the perspective of Izobel, who is wild, strong and hopeful, mean when its needed and cares about others. Then the brave petite and smart Desdemona. The girls met while being raised by nuns in an orphanage. It takes place in New Orleans and Louisiana, first in the Orphanage and then in an abandoned plantation the girls find when they leave the orphanage.
The novel goes back an forth between the girl's shared past and present day.
The drama all starts when Izobel saves a boy, Hale, from being killed by a gang called lykos. Hale kind of got on my nerves. He stays with them to heal and of course Desdemona is suspicious if him, it's just been the two of them all this time and in comes a strange boy, who doesn't know their story or what they are hiding from, he could be nicer or more patient. Hale and Izobel fall in love, which I found unnecessary to the story line.
Izobel could be trying at times and while I didn't always understand Desdemona's anger I could see how Izobel would get on her nerves. There is a part when Izobel wants to save a woman and Desdemona says no. When you are already starving and have brought home another mouth to feed, adding ANOTHER person is a bad idea. In a dog-eat-dog type world like this one you HAVE to think about yourself and the ones you are already responsible for. It sucks but this novel captured that idea and the gruesomeness of that kind of world really well. I felt Izobel's character read much younger than Desdemona's.
There are some other very interesting characters like Radek and Prometheus, but writing too much about them might give some rather creepy and interesting plot lines away.
The writing was really good, as was the character building. The author makes it feel as if you are there, with them trying to get past these bad guys while starving and being afraid. The prose is good and at times lyrical, and at other times harsh so that the reader gets a good idea as to how the characters are feeling.
This novel is dark, which I enjoyed. It feels almost hopeless at times. I get a bit of twisted amusement when characters become dark twisted versions of themselves and give in to evil, even by manipulation.
There are a few twists at the end....That I won't ruin for you.
So happy reading!!