Friday, October 3, 2014

Stolen Dreams - My review

Stolen Dreams (Cassie Scot #4)
Stolen Dreams (Cassie Scot #4)Edward Scot and Victor Blackwood have despised one another for nearly a quarter of a century, but now their simmering hatred is about to erupt.
When Cassie Scot returns home from her sojourn in Pennsylvania, she finds that her family has taken a hostage. Desperate to end the fighting before someone dies, Cassie seeks help from local seer Abigail Hastings, Evan Blackwood’s grandmother. But Abigail has seen her own death, and when it comes at the hand of Cassie’s father, Victor Blackwood kills Edward Scot.
But things may not be precisely as they appear.
Evan persuades Cassie to help him learn the truth, teaming them up once again in their darkest hour. New revelations about Evan and his family make it difficult for Cassie to cling to a shield of anger, but can Evan and Cassie stop a feud that has taken on a life of its own? Conclusion to the Cassie Scot series.

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My Review 

Stolen Dreams is the final book in the Cassie Scot series. We have watched Cassie grow so much throughout the series. I had invested so much in my friendship with Cassie that this book was both anticipated and dreaded. The author did a masterful job with this book. I usually do not like the last book in a series. Too often it does not end the way I hoped for. A few times, in the final book, the characters did not even resemble the characters in the first few books. Stolen Dreams did not have either of those issues. 

In the beginning we met Cassie, a young girl, in a magical family, who had no magic. She was trying to find herself and where she fit in to things. We watched her grow, stumbling along through some difficult situations. In Stolen Dreams we see her come into her own. I was so freaking proud of her! 
Evan is back and is another character we have watched grow and come into himself. That was a surprise for me. I am not use to getting to watch two main characters grow up so much. We know from the first book in the series that Cassie and Evan were friends who were attracted to each other. We also know that both their families hated each other. With reason. From the start I knew Cassie and Evan belonged together but just because you belong together doesn't mean you get to be together.
Cassie went through some very tough times and Evan was at the heart of them...not always in a good way. Most writers would have focused on Cassie, after all the story is hers, but not Ms Amsden. She did an outstanding job with the character development of Cassie and Evan. I really loved that she devoted time to us really getting to know Evan. Do Evan and Cassie finally get together? When Stolen Dreams opens she is engaged to Alexander and the feud between the families of Cassie and Evan is at an all time high. Not only that but with all that Cassie has found out, her love for Evan has turned to hate. I have always said you cannot truly hate someone unless you loved them first. The line is fine and once you cross it the road back is long and pain filled. Most never recover the loss of trust needed in order for love to survive. I will leave it to you to discover if Cassie marries Alexander, Evan, someone else or no one else. 

The other part I truly loved with this series deals with all the "minor" characters. Ms Amsden wrote them in such a way that we know they are minor but yet they are major. I love Kaitlyn and Madison. They each have a story to tell, (in this book we find out just how much Madison has to tell! Bomb goes off with her). I definitely want to read the spin offs that tell their stories. The situations they each are in combined with Ms Amsden talent for character development make those books a must read when they come out. I am suspecting we will see Cassie and Evan a time or two in those books which makes saying farewell a bit easier. 

Stolen Dreams is the final chapter for Cassandra. I really loved the wrap up. Each book contains a main case that Cassie works on but has all these mini plots going on. With Stolen Dreams we get the answers to questions we have had since book one. I enjoyed how the author wove this series with its main plot and sub plots. It was truly magical. Nothing was really lost in the wrap up. I think that was an amazing feat. With so much going on it would have been easy to lose a sub plot. Ms Amsden handled it masterfully. 

I am so sad to see the end come to Cassandra Scot. I have loved this series so much. I was so excited to receive my copy of Stolen Dreams but at the same time dreaded reading it because of the goodbye. This was a hard review to write. I didn't want to give away spoilers and at the same time I wanted to talk about it. This entire series was such a delightful surprise to read. I loved reading Nancy Drew when I was a child. This series is my magical grown up Nancy Drew series. Matter of fact the books share space with my old Nancy Drew books. I would like to extend a huge thank you to Christine Amsden for providing me with review copies of her books. My reviews of each of them are my honest feelings about the books. I enjoyed them so much that I also purchased Kindle copies of each book. I would recommend this series be read in the order written. The books are not stand alones. It is a series I would recommend to teens and adults. There are some situations that may not be suitable for younger children. This entire series is a five star series. 

The Cassie Scot Series:

Cassie Scot is the ungifted daughter of powerful sorcerers, born between worlds but belonging to neither. At 21, all she wants is to find a place for herself, but earning a living as a private investigator in the shadow of her family’s reputation isn’t easy. When she is pulled into a paranormal investigation, and tempted by a powerful and handsome sorcerer, she will have to decide where she truly belongs.

Author Bio

Christine AmsdenChristine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.
At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, a condition that affects the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.
In addition to writing, Christine teaches workshops on writing at Savvy Authors. She also does some freelance editing work.
Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. They have two beautiful children.

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