Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Review: Fractured (Guards of the Shadowlands #2) by Sarah Fine

Fractured (Guards of the Shadowlands #2) by Sarah Fine
Publisher: Skyscape
Publication date: October 29th 2013.
My rating: 5 stars 


In the week since Lela returned to Rhode Island as Captain of the Guard with Malachi as her second in command, local news has been dominated by chilling sightings of human-like creatures running on all fours. Lela knows there’s only one explanation: the Mazikin have arrived in the land of the living. Needing to maintain the appearance of a normal life for her foster mother, her probation officer, and her classmates, Lela returns to Warwick High along with Malachi. At night they secretly hunt for the Mazikin nest. To assist, two new Guards from very different parts of the Shadowlands are assigned to Lela’s unit, including the bad boy Jim, who repeatedly challenges Lela's authority. Lela struggles to keep all her Guards on the right side of the law, but their mistakes come at a terrible cost. As one painful revelation follows another and the Mazikin start targeting those closest to her, Lela finds herself more vulnerable than she’s ever been, wanting a future more than she ever has. With an enemy determined to separate soul from body, one question remains: how much is she willing to sacrifice to protect those she loves?

My last 5 star rating for a book was way back in September, I know that doesn’t seem that long ago, but I was in dire need for something to wow me. My reading slump was getting really bad (the occasional 4 stars were keeping me going) but I was seriously considering taking a break from reading (something which I haven’t done in like two years) but then Fractured came along and simply put I was blown away.

Sanctum was a book I picked up one weekend on a whim, I wanted to see what all the hype was about and I was basically sucked into this truly unbelievable world, for my three reading days. So when Fractured came around, I was excited to dive back in, but lately a lot of the follow up books I had been reading had been leaving me disappointing, so honestly I went into Fractured with my expectations in check. And let me tell you for these four days when I read this book, all I did was read, breath, and smell it. You know when you have to make every reading second count that was me. And I couldn’t have picked up Fractured at a worse time, work was crazy, my sister was on my case about staying up to date with New Girl and my other sister was on half term break so was constantly bored and wanted to do something as soon I was home. So I found myself squeezing reading every page whenever I could, honestly if I could have read and walked to work I would have done that.

Fractured was a book which ripped my heart to shreds, Fine was clever in providing us with occasional glimmers of hope, but only to snatch them away from you in a blink of an eye. With Malachi and Lela in the real world you would think that things would have been easier for them, but no Mazikin were on the loose once more and to me they seemed clever than ever. Lela as Captain of the Guard was given two members to her team; Jim and Henry. Lela thought she was fighting a losing battle, Jim didn’t even know what a Mazikin was and how did Lela expect to be Captain and keep everyone in check when she had the most knowledgeable individual who would have done a much greater job than her; Malachi as her lieutenant? I really appreciated Fine’s change of scenery, compared to the dark and foreboding surroundings of the dark city; it was fun watching Lela and Malachi have to cope with making friends and high school alongside battling with Mazikin. Also after having lost her closest friend in Nadia, I enjoyed Lela getting to know other people from her school. By the end of this book I had become firmly attached to this group of friends, it was great how Lela could put her differences aside and make the time and effort to let these people into her life.

With the way things went down, I was left really conflicted at times, as how I wanted thins to go. I always firmly believed that Malachi would hold a strong place in my heart, but at times I was nearly swayed to another *shock horror*. Malachi once more was a formidable force to be reckoned with, he was loyal to his Captain Lela, he was fitting in well at school (of course he had all of the girls a flutter over him). But because of the decision he made, his relationship with Lela really changed and honestly I didn’t like the direction it went at all. Highlight to view spoiler.It was clear that both Malachi and Lela were hurting from Malachi’s decision to only be her Lieutenant and nothing more, my heart was breaking too, and just watching them act like they were happy with the decision when they clearly weren’t was too much for me. So that was one of the reasons I let Ian in, like Lela I needed someone to comfort me over the heartache I had been suffering. And Ian, he was the perfect temporary replacement, he was considerate, super sweet; how he ate so much food when he was nervous and he defended Lela against the Mazikin when he didn’t know what was going on. Ian grew on me so much, that I knew Lela would have to choose one person and I knew in my heart who that person would be, but I couldn’t bear for one of these fantastic characters to get hurt.

Fine was just brilliant of toying with my heart; on top of that I had to experience several heart palpitations over the numerous tense scenes. We never knew when the Mazikin were planning an attack or what they were up to. It’s like being in this completely different world didn’t make them afraid of anything. It was scary not knowing who they could change when they wanted to. So my poor heart had it all to deal with in Fractured.

For some reason I actually assumed that this series was a duology, so there was me all expecting this series to be wrapped up nicely, you know me I don’t always appreciate my happily ever after’s, but never have I ever wanted a happily ever after as much as I did with Fractured. So you can imagine how I was feeling when at 95% it didn’t look like things were going to wrap up nicely and the dread in my stomach started to get worse. The ending to Fractured was just something I didn’t expect at all; the wait for the final book will just be a killer.


Fractured by far is one of the best follow up books I have read this year. If like me you’re looking for something to knock your socks off, then this is the book to give a go. Fine introduces a wonderful set of secondary characters which will leave you clutching your heart, a great mix of nonstop action which left my nails bitten to the core and some poignant scenes which will just rip away at that tiny piece of heart you have left. This is one series not to be missed. 



20 comments:

  1. I am not reading your review because I adored the first book and want this one to remain completely unspoiled, but I'm bookmarking it to come back to once I've read it. Your five-star rating has me very, very excited.

    Kate @ The Midnight Garden

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  2. Yup, I agree completely - I was upset with the choice Malachi made and the subsequent romantic drama really ruined this book for me. I still enjoyed it and found aspects to really love, but I can't say this one was wholly fantastic for me. I'm so glad this took you out of your reading slump, though, Jasprit - incredible review, dear! :)

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  3. I loved the first book as well and I'm looking forward to reading this one when it comes out. I have to say that I'm not at all looking forward to the romantic drama. At least, Fine's writing and world-building was solid. I thought this was a duology as well for some reason, so I'm a little nervous about the ending of Fractured.
    Lovely review, Jasprit!

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  4. I keep hearing the most positive things about this book (and the series). I find that I just can't keep up with all the books on the market today, but I'm really actually quite intrigued by this romantic drama you mentioned! Lovely review, Jasprit! :)

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  5. I do so hate those reading slumps! They're the WORST!! I've heard such good things about this series but haven't even picked up the first one yet. Though I don't mind getting my heart ripped to shreds, I like to have it put back together quickly so I might wait for the final book.

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  6. "Fractured was a book which ripped my heart to shreds, Fine was clever in providing us with occasional glimmers of hope, but only to snatch them away from you in a blink of an eye."

    IT HURT SO MUCH JASPRIT!!!! *dies a little inside just thinking about it* I know separating a main couple in book two is a common and overused plot device, but the way it was done in this book just destroyed me. I was so upset for both of them that I couldn't even get frustrated at either of them for not fighting harder to make it work. They're both so dark and damaged and I love them. And the end. THE END JASPRIT! I can't even. I need book 3. Amazing review my friend, I agree completely!

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  7. Although I don't doubt that Fractured is excellent, and I actually own a copy (pre-ordered it ages ago), I won't be reading it until the next one comes out. These characters mean too much to me, I don't think I could stand seeing them behave so stupidly and irrationally. And the cliffangers.. yeah, I kind of despise them
    Lovely review, Jasprit. I'm glad this worked out so well for you.

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  8. 5 STARS ?? Thats all I need to know.. What's the first book called again? Runs off to check goodreads..

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  9. Jasprit darling, you make me wanna give up on everything and sit down and start reading this series (if only that was possible). I have heard such amazing things about the first book in this series but people aren't that much fascinated by this one. It seems to me I'd love both. Great review :)

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  10. I have such trouble commenting on The Reader's Den for some reason--it often resets and eats my comment so sometimes I have to retype it several times! I'm not sure why that's happening.

    But anyway, I am so pleased to see your 5 stars!! I will be by your GR to check out your review once I've written mine. I enjoyed it too, am so relieved since I saw some mixed ratings come through earlier.

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

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  11. Cheers to unexpected endings. Especially if they make the wait until the next book seem like foreever! I'm glad you loved this follow-up to one of your favorites and that it didn't suffer from the second book syndrome. I hope that you won't fall into a slump again since it's tough to fight over a place in one's heart after such a good read. Lovely, lovely review, my dear!

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  12. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about the book. I wonder why Malachi would make such a choice *grunt*

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  13. I love it when a book can be so emotional!

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  14. I gave this one 5 stars too! And I know that The Quite Concert did too! I'm glad that we all agree that this one was an amazing middle book. Gah, it was so good, but my heart still hurts! I need book 3 now!

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  15. Sanctum was such a good book! I definitely need to get this one bought! Thanks for the great review!

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  16. Wow, five stars is always a nice thing to see! I am dying to read Sanctum. It's been on my wish list for awhile now, so I'm happy to hear you loved the second novel just as much.

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  17. i hear ya. I loved this one too and I knew that I would, the romance was a bit frustrating but I understood why and I liked that they had to endure some growing pains, but oh my gosh... that ending was just brutal! So glad you love this series as much as I do!

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  18. Yours is the second, or third, review this week that has stated Fractured is the perfect follow up. I really must give this series a try!

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  19. I have not read book one, but ohh, five stars! That is awesome. It sounds pretty good too. I'm glad you loved it so much :D Thank you for sharing. <3 :)

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  20. This cover is awesome! I wonder if Sanctum will get a revised cover now? I hope so, this one is just so pretty. :-) Awesome review, I'm glad you're enjoying this series. It's always nice when a sequel surprises you in a really good way. The opposite usually happens to me, so many authors rush their second book due to deadlines.

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