Title: The Rose Master
Author: Valentina Cano
Release Date: June, 2014
Goodreads Rating: 4.56/5 Stars
My Rating: 4/5 Stars
My Content Rating: YA (Nothing more than kissing, Some horror elements)
The Rose Master was kind of an interesting mix of Downton Abbey meets Supernatural. Anne is a servant at a large manor - the manor is the only home she's ever known, since her mother was a servant there before she died when Anne was only seven. But when the lady of the house informs Anne that she's being sent off to live in a strange new place with a new master, she has no say in the matter. She is forced to leave everything she knows. She soon finds that her new home is more than a little strange. Not only do very few servants work there, allowing the manor to fall into disrepair, but she discovers that something else is in the manor - something that means her and the others living there harm. When she grows closer to Lord Grey, she learns that the thing in the manor is very real - and very dangerous.
What I loved:
- The creepiness. There were lots of scary elements to this story - things that go bump in the night, birds that fall out of the sky, things scratching at the door, unseen violence that happens in the night - I could go on and on. I don't get terribly scared when reading books for some reason, so I wasn't as freaked out as I could have been, but when I think about this book as a horror movie, it makes me shudder!
- Anne and Lord Grey. I loved the slow-burning relationship that developed between Anne and Lord Grey. At first, Lord Grey is just a sort of creepy presence on the estate (to go along with other even creepier things), but Anne eventually starts to get to know him and we see an interesting, tentative relationship form between these two. There are plenty of barriers between them, though. The romance element of the book was actually relatively minor compared to the supernatural storyline, but I really enjoyed it.
- The paranormal storyline. Once we find out what is really going on in the manor, things really start to heat up! I loved the paranormal aspect of the book!
- Slightly slow in middle. While I did really enjoy this book, there was a portion in the middle - after Anne had started discovering the creepy stuff about the manor and before she started really interacting with Lord Grey - that felt a little bit slow to me. I liked the scary elements, but horror isn't my favorite genre (I like it, but don't love it), so I was a little anxious to get to the meat of the story. That's just me, though.
Overall, I thought that The Rose Master was a great mix of YA historical, paranormal and horror. The ending gave us closure, but certainly left room for future installments of a series (Goodreads doesn't show this as being part of the series, but I assume that there will be more books). I give this book 4/5 stars.
***Disclosure: This book was provided to me by the author in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given. All opinions are my own***
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