Rather exciting this is the first review I have done on my blog where the author sent me a copy of their book and asked me to review it. I feel very professional.
Anyway, Echo by Lorena Glass is the first book in a trilogy that follows a pair of lovers cursed throughout history to never be together. But they are determined to defy fate with the help of time travel. Whenever one of them dies the other time travels to be with them again in the form of their next or previous incarnation. The story is about soul mates and the idea that people are meant to be together. I would definitely call it a romance possibly YA but with a wonderful twist.
I must be honest, I very nearly didn’t get past the first page. I found it a bit too angsty teenage heartbreak and I thought “oh no what have I agreed to?”. However, that being said I am so glad I powered through the rain on the empty beach because it turns out the first setting is 5th Century Gaul. Yep that’s right. Gaul. How cool is that? I find when people choose historical settings for novels they tend to be a bit same-old-same-old. Picking Dark Ages Europe I found really refreshing and totally engaging.
The story starts from the point of view of Karissa, who is from the near future and I got the impression she was the first of the lovers to time traveller. She has recently lost Ian her (much older) lover hence the opening heartbreak sequence. I’m not sure if I like Karissa or not. She grew on me as her story progressed but at the beginning I felt a little “oh stop your whining”. Then again I often feel that way when reading romances; I liked her much more when she was happy.
What I really loved about this book and found so original was the way the narrative shifts and the characters get reinvented with each reincarnation. It plays with the establish ideas of soul mates and says well if you’re soul mates surely if your soul is reincarnated you will still love them? I found it so clever and refreshing. For me ‘will they won’t they?’ isn’t enough in a love story. In Echo the interest doesn’t come from will they get together or will they cheat/fight/break up, we know they are meant to be so their relationship will work, they just can’t get the chance to prove it.
The only thing that let me down ever so slightly with this book was the writing. Every now and again it would tell rather than show and it was so frustrating because I really like this story. The settings, the time travel all of it was new and exciting there is so much potential. At the end of this book we are only up to 737. I want to know about this couple on board a ship to the new world, or in pre-revolution France. The ending was perfect. Moving and intriguing with just enough conclusion to satisfy me at the end of this book and just enough cliffhanger to make me excited for the next.
Rating: 3/5 (I wish it were 4 it’s just the writing)
Would recommend to: YA lovers or any one a bit bored with standard romances