Review: The Keepers (Alchemy #1) by Donna Augustine

October 14, 2013 Review 1

Review: The Keepers (Alchemy #1) by Donna Augustine

Two days ago, Jo Davids was a waitress by night and a college kid by day, with the unnerving problem of things floating around her.

One day ago, Jo's sexy boss, Cormac, noticed her for all the wrong reasons when she witnessed a man transform into a monster in the basement of his casino.

Today, Cormac ordered her shot. If he's real lucky, she won't die. Because if she does, all hope is lost.

Title: The Keepers
Author: Donna Augustine
Other books by this author that we've reviewed: Keepers and Killers
Series: Alchemy
Other books in this series that we've reviewed: Keepers and Killers
Published by Strong Hold Publishing
Source: Author
Genres: Science Fiction, Urban Fantasy
Pages: 13 April, 2013
See the title at Goodreads
Purchase your copy: Amazon
Visit the Author's Website

Stars: three-stars
I received this book for free from the Publisher or Author in exchange for an honest review, or I purchased it with my own funds. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
300 Review

Mixing sci-fi, urban fantasy and some romance, this book has some problems, but is the first in a series that promises a pretty fun ride. It has some very unique elements in that it mixes and crosses the genres of Urban Fantasy and Science Fiction, and while some of the world building feels familiar and not wholly unique, Donna Augustine’s treatment of characters and approach is wholly unique.

Essentially the world is urban fantasy in feel with Fae and weres: with Alchemists that control and scientifically manipulate portals and control nearly every facet of society.  All of the beings in the story come from other planets, and the magic is far closer to a genetic trait than a learned skill.

The main characters here are Cormac and Jo.  Cormac is a bit of the rich playboy type, self-centered, controlling and layered with traits that are far less attractive than one would expect in a romantic lead.  He is also the “power” in this couple: Jo is living in his home under duress, and he is masterminding the control of the portals.  Jo is half fae half alchemist, and a very powerful being of her own right.  But her attraction to, and games played with Cormac show a basic level of immaturity that is only partly relieved by her own personal demons.  Early on she is little more than a petulant teen, though fortunately her determination to answer her own questions and the challenges she is faced with do show her ability to grow.

Not that this is a romance and they declare undying love: no, it is truly setting the stage for some epic battles with rogue Alchemists and a power struggle to maintain supremacy, all mixed in with Jo’s search for the church where she was abandoned as an infant as she tries for her answers.  There are several elements vying for supremacy in this story, yet the descriptions and the tension between Jo and Cormac make for an interesting read.

There are some editing misses, verbs in wrong tenses, misspelling and some poor word choice, and the unique tone of the place does seem to wear off. There were swathes of text that could have been eliminated, a fixation on Cormac’s beauty and money, and Jo’s struggle to not move their relationship into a physical and more romantic tone are often repeated and unnecessarily so. These elements were established solidly early on, and the repetition is both distracting and unnecessary. All in all though, the effort is a fairly good one and promises a good start to a new series with something unique for fans of UF and Sci-Fi alike.

Avon Romance


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