Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 325
dark YA fantasy featuring a compelling anti-heroine
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
BEYOND THE RUBY VEIL is a very dark YA fantasy that features a ruthless anti-heroine and a mysterious other world. Emanuela lives in Occhia, a town that has existed for a thousand years under the rule of the Watercrea, a woman who takes those about to die and extracts their blood to turn it into water. Emanuela is about to be married to her BFF (not paramour), Alessandro. It is rare that a betrothal of children actually turns into marriage, as people are frequently marked for death.

The red mark will appear on the skin, indicating that they must deliver themselves to the Watercrea before it spreads over their body. They are a sacrifice to turn blood into water to sustain the remaining townspeople. This happens at any age. In fact, Emanuela found hers when she was little, but it has not spread in all those years. It is a secret she has guarded for so many years - only for it to be exposed on her way to the altar.

However, Emanuela will not go quietly, and her rebellion signals darker things to come, setting her on the path to discover how water is made and the secrets that surround their town.

This story is shockingly dark and a horror at times. That being said, it was highly devourable, and even after reading it, the reader is left with so many intriguing questions. This world is crafted well and with so much mystery that answers only lead to more questions. Emanuela is certainly an anti-heroine - she is selfish and self-serving and so compelling. She has a thirst for life and power that sets off a cascade of events that will change her world, which has existed stagnant for a thousand years, forever.

BEYOND THE RUBY VEIL is shocking, provocative, and lethal - a story that will leave the reader reeling, and eagerly awaiting the sequel. Highly recommend for fans of dark fantasy/horror - this is a compelling read that will consume a fantastic afternoon.
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