A while back, I posted a review for Stacey Jay's JULIET IMMORTAL, which can be found here.
Spoiler: I really loved JULIET IMMORTAL. :-) I thought the concept was great, the stakes super high, and I loved Juliet as a character. So I was jazzed when I heard Stacey Jay was writing a companion novel, following Juliet's Romeo, called ROMEO REDEEMED.
Seductive companion to the popular Juliet Immortal, in which former lovers—Romeo and Juliet—meet, not as true lovers, but truly as enemies.
Cursed to live out eternity in his rotted corpse, Romeo, known for his ruthless, cutthroat ways, is given the chance to redeem himself by traveling back in time to save the life of Ariel Dragland. Unbeknownst to her, Ariel is important to both the evil Mercenaries and the love-promoting Ambassadors and holds the fate of the world in her hands. Romeo must win her heart and make her believe in love, turning her away from her darker potential before his work is discovered by the Mercenaries. While his seduction begins as yet another lie, it soon becomes his only truth. Romeo vows to protect Ariel from harm, and do whatever it takes to win her heart and soul. But when Ariel is led to believe his love is a deception, she becomes vulnerable to Mercenary manipulation, and her own inner darkness may ultimately rip them apart.
Romeo's reimagining worked just as well for me as Juliet's did, though I confess I still loved JULIET IMMORTAL a little more. One reason: the Juliet portions of this novel were confusing to me at first, especially because the worlds and stories change from the first novel to the next, and it takes some effort to keep everything straight. And while it all made sense in the end, that distracted me slightly at the beginning.
Having said that, I found Stacey Jay's writing this time to be just as breathless and engaging. This was the first book I read after having a baby, and I actually made time for it - even sacrificing sleep! - because I had to find out what happened next.
I loved getting to know the character of Ariel; she was strong and vulnerable, and I think Stacey did a fantastic job with her evolution from distrusting loner to girl in love, and on through her transformation. Her emotions and reactions to her situation felt genuine and true to her character.
Romeo was similarly transformed; I love books where the characters actually grow and change!
This was a nice conclusion to the storylines and characters introduced in the first novel, and I recommend it to anyone who's read and enjoyed JULIET IMMORTAL. It would also work as a standalone, but why not check out the first book too? They're both romantic, fast-paced reads!
See what the other Bookanistas are reading this week!
Corrine Jackson is redeemed by HOPELESS by Colleen Hoover
Jessica Love gets lost in TAKEN by Erin Bowman
Stasia Ward Kehoe connects writers with WriteOnCon
Shannon Messenger celebrates upcoming spring reads