by Sarah Fine
Series: Servants of Fate #1
Published by: Brilliance Audio
Narrator: Emily Foster
Length: 9 hrs and 39 mins
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Purchase: Amazon | Audible
In a broken landscape carved by environmental collapse, Boston paramedic Cacia Ferry risks life and limb on the front lines of a fragile and dangerous city. What most don’t know—including her sexy new partner, Eli Margolis—is that while Cacy works to save lives, she has another job ferrying the dead to the Afterlife. Once humans are “Marked” by Fate, the powerful Ferrys are called to escort the vulnerable souls to either eternal bliss or unending fire and pain. Unaware of Cacy’s other life, Eli finds himself as mesmerized by his fierce and beautiful partner as he is mistrustful of the influential Ferry clan led by the Charon—who happens to be Cacy’s father. Cacy, in turn, can no longer deny her intense attraction to the mysterious ex-Ranger with a haunted past. But just as their relationship heats up, an apparent hit takes the Charon before his time. Shaken to the core, Cacy pursues the rogue element who has seized the reins of fate, only to discover that Eli has a devastating secret of his own. Not knowing whom to trust, what will Cacy have to sacrifice to protect Eli—and to make sure humanity’s future is secure?
One of my goals for 2015 was to read a Sarah Fine book since so many of my blog friends recommend her. I chose to listen to Marked the first book in her Servants of Fate series and it left me craving more. Marked was well crafted with characters I rooted for and twists I never saw coming.
Espresso review: captivating, unique characters and an interesting world
Caffeinated Breakdown of Marked
World: This urban fantasy takes place in Boston and weaves mythology into a dystopian world. Fines’ twist on the Fates and supernatural creatures was fascinating from the Scopes to the Fates themselves. Power struggles, romance and timeline threads held me spellbound. While we do not get all the pieces of this world, it was fleshed out enough to have me craving more.
Characters: From the very first chapters I was swept up and each character drew me further in. Cacy Ferry is tenacious, inquisitive and has such spunk. She is a bit of rebel choosing to be a paramedic instead of joining the families’ corporate business. It helps balance out her true calling. Eli is not your typical hero and I loved him. He is loyal, loves hard and hides secrets from his past. The tale is told in the dual perspectives of Eli and Cacy. To me this was brilliant and only enhanced the storyline and their interactions. The secondary characters and hierarchy were stellar. I love when an author fleshes them out and has me equally curious. We have villains and characters whose role we are unsure of making this a real page-turner.
Plot: I am going to be vague here, because Fine created twists I never saw coming. A human whose timeline will have a rippling effect on everyone involved and beyond is in danger. Sides are drawn, lines are crossed and figuring out where everyone falls is suspenseful. From the beginning, Fine has us invested from both an emotional standpoint and a “fate of the world” aspect.
Romance: Holy hotness and bring out the feels. The chemistry between Eli and Cacy is electric. You can call it insta-love if you want but Fine had no trouble making me believe. Every time these two were together, I felt the sexually tense and intense connection. Swoon-worthy with all the feels, Fine gave us scenes that melted my ears and she did it without making me blush. The angst and tension were brilliantly drawn out without making me pull out my hair. Instead, it had me holding my breath and demanding she find them their happy.
Narrator: Emily Foster is the narrator and we began a little rocky. She does a terrific job with the character but I found her narration to be too fast. I generally set my audible app between 1.25x and 1.75x. With Foster, I had to set it at 1x. Having said that within the first few chapters I was swept up in the story and found her voices and tones to be spot on. I definitely plan to continue on audio and hope she continues to narrate them.
Caffeinated Conclusion: Marked for the win! I am delighted and excited to continue the series, especially after the epilogue that left me drooling in anticipation. Sarah Fine lived up to the hype. Marked will delight fans of urban fantasy, dystopian worlds, science fiction and mythology based tales. The next book/audio in the series, Claimed releases in March of 2015.
“I came into this without expectations. Only hope. I’ll take whatever parts of you you’re willing to give.”
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