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Author: Ali Winters
Title: The Reapers
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal
Release date: May 31 2015 (re-release: Nov 02 2015)
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Blurb:
The balance of life and death must be kept at all costs.Having been a reaper as long as she can remember, Nivian knows that what she does is essential in maintaining balance. After being assigned to a rushed mark she finds that there is more to this human thanany other she has encountered. Kain had been living an ordinary life without a second thought until he meets Nivian who turns his worldupside down. He is thrust into a world of hunters and reapers. The keepers of life and death have beenfeuding for centuries over a reason no one can even remember. With Kain, having been marked for reaping, and Nivian being hunted, they forge a friendship and togethermust find the truth in order to keep balance in check. Wrong choices could destroy everything. As they journey they discover hidden histories, powers, and lies and truths that have been spun since the beginningof time. The consequence of failure, unimaginable.
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Excerpt:
Nivian leaped over the edge of the bridge and landed with a soft tap on the surface of the water. Shereached down, pulled the soul of the driver up by the collar of his shirt, and stood him up next to her on topof the water. She took the driver’s hand, palm up, in hers and waved her other hand over his. Pinching the air, she pulled and lifted up to expose his life thread. His wide eyes stared unblinking, hypnotized by theglowing string of light. Nivian reached behind her and grabbed the scythe strapped to her back, and swung. With a slow, deliberate movement, Nivian sliced the human’s life thread. The light formed into a ball and hovered between them. She pulled out a small pocket watch and guided the life energy down to the watch. It sunk into it and disappeared. She snapped the watch closed and returned it to her pocket.“You should know better than to drink and drive. You could’ve seriously hurt someone.”He gaped at her, his mouth opened and closed like a fish.“Yes, you really are dead,” she confirmed and gave him an apathetic look as she turned away.“Are you… the devil?” he managed to sputter.“No, of course not. I am just the natural order of things,” she said, looking back over her shoulder. “Wait here. Your spirit counselor will be here soon to guide you to your afterlife. I have other jobs tonight.” She spun on her heel and walked away, as she pulled her hood back up over her head and vanished.

 

My Review:

I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The Reapers by Ali Winters is an intriguing read. It is a different take on good and evil involving life (Yeva, a Russian name meaning “Eve”) and death (Silas).

I loved the main characters of Nivian, Kain, and Caspian. The three of them had an unusual relationship. It was obvious from the very beginning that Caspian, an elder reaper, had strong feelings for Nivian. By the time Kain entered the picture we get the foundation for a possible love triangle. Only with Winters’ characters, Nivian is completely oblivious to what being in love is all about AND only one character is in love.

The interactions between Nivian and Kain were interesting. Nivian’s role was a lone job. She didn’t have family (outside of other reapers) and she didn’t have any true friends. She was a reaper enjoying a human-like existence and Kain helped her experience it.

Camira (love the name) made a great antagonist. She was bitterly jealous of the girl she considered a friend. Camira had big aspirations, and acted as if she were entitled to the powers and freedom Nivian enjoyed. I suspect we’ll see much more of her evil side in the second book in this series.

Silas, the ancient reaper, easily flip-flopped between bad guy and good guy. It was hard to peg him. In the beginning he was mysterious and hard-nosed. You felt he was hiding or protecting something. By the end of the book you learned his secret. Suddenly, he had potential as a possible good guy. The verdict is still out on him.

I appreciated the details in this story. Winters’ did a great job with the worldbuilding in The Reapers. It was easy to picture the human world and the world of the reapers, Mophar.

This is the second book I’ve ready by Winters–the novella Flirting with Death was the first. I look forward to continuing this tale.

Buy links:
Page Foundry: http://bit.ly/1ITqyuo
Author: Ali Winters
Title: Flirting With Death
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal
Release date: Nov 02 2015
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Blurb:
Being a reaper has its perks, but also its downsides. While on an assignment, Evander is caught off guard by an unmarked human. Captivated, he is unable to tear himself away. This is why reapers don’t associate with mortals. Piper was ordinary, just a girl looking for love. And all she knows is that her current boyfriend isn’t it. Anunfortunate incident and a series of remarkable events turn her world upside down. But what she finds isthe last thing she ever expected—She finds herself falling for the least likely candidate.
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Excerpt:
“Stop. He is gone.” Evander said calmly. Why would she waste so much energy on someone who had no chance.“Don’t tell her to stop,” Tony snapped. Oh, right. That guy was still here. Where was a spirit counselor when you needed one? And at that moment, she showed up.“Yeah, yeah, I know. Don’t tell me. I’m late, am I right?” She waved a hand in the air dismissively.“I should have known it would be you, Cassandra. Please take him.”“Don’t boss me around, you fancy assassin. I know how to do my job.” She bit out, then turned to her assignment. “Come on, life loser, this way.” “I’m not going anywhere with you.” Tony backed up and stepped on his body, trying to slide back in. Evander’s gaze flicked upward, the difficult ones always tried to return to their bodies.

 

My Review:

I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The short story, Flirting With Death, was the first fiction I’ve ever read by Ali Winters. It won’t be the last.

Winters wrote an imaginative love story between two unexpected characters, a reaper and a human. Definitely not your average couple. I loved these characters and their story.

Evander never imagined what could happen just doing his job. When the story opened, I got the sense that he had grown discontented with his position. He found the job mundane. He looked forward to finishing an assignment and moving on to the next one. The job didn’t thrill him until he met the girl who intrigued him. He couldn’t get her out of his mind.

Piper was the pretty girl willing to settle for a guy who mistreated her. She just wanted someone in her life. She didn’t think she was worthy of doing better. Never could she have imagined that a tragedy could change her life forever.

The emotions are what made this story so good. Evander’s need for something more resonated with me. I understood how his job didn’t fulfill him. His feelings colored how he saw all humans. And, Piper’s desperation was so palpable. Evander lit a spark in her that she wanted to embrace fully. Just one inopportune moment, and she couldn’t get him out of her mind.

Flirting With Death was simply a good, heartfelt story. I hope to read more about this interesting couple. I know I’ll be reading much more by Ali Winters!

 

Buy links:
Page Foundry: http://bit.ly/1Lj7MJd
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About the author:
Ali grew up in the Pacific North West. She attended Oregon State University for photography. After manyadventures, she moved to Colorado, earned a second degree, and met and married her husband.She currently lives in windy Wyoming with her husband and two dogs. When not writing, Ali is either,photographing, knitting, reading, dancing, or staying inside where it’s warm with a hot cup of coffee. Shedreams of traveling the world someday soon.
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