Monday, February 2, 2015

The Eterna Files by Leanna Renee Hieber

Series:  Eterna Files #1
320 p.
Publisher: Tor Books
Published: Feb, 3 2015
Source: From NetGalley and publisher for review
London, 1882: Queen Victoria appoints Harold Spire of the Metropolitan Police to Special Branch Division Omega. Omega is to secretly investigate paranormal and supernatural events and persons. Spire, a skeptic driven to protect the helpless and see justice done, is the perfect man to lead the department, which employs scholars and scientists, assassins and con men, and a traveling circus. Spire's chief researcher is Rose Everhart, who believes fervently that there is more to the world than can be seen by mortal eyes. 
Their first mission: find the Eterna Compound, which grants immortality. Catastrophe destroyed the hidden laboratory in New York City where Eterna was developed, but the Queen is convinced someone escaped—and has a sample of Eterna. 
Also searching for Eterna is an American, Clara Templeton, who helped start the project after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln nearly destroyed her nation. Haunted by the ghost of her beloved, she is determined that the Eterna Compound—and the immortality it will convey—will be controlled by the United States, not Great Britain.
My thoughts:
I love this author's writing. Very descriptive and it really puts you into the scene. I love how she made the alternate history come to life and the various characters within. However, I did have a had time really connecting to this story at times. I was also captivated at times. It was a very uneven experience.

In some ways the narration seemed to jump around a bit. You get various POVs which do not meld together and I was able to easily separate who was talking and what was going on. The problem seemed to come with adding characters that have no current importance and background information that felt the same. While I did believe that that information would come in perfect use, it just didn't materialize within the story here.

I give this book 3 stars. While I did drift while reading parts of the book, other parts (especially the magical/ paranormal parts) seemed to have my total attention. I want to continue this series as I have complete confidence that the author will give me all the tools to totally put together this mystery. I recommend it to those that are fans of the author and like mysteries.

23 comments:

  1. Nailing the descriptive writing style is a must whenever you're dealing with alternate history; however consistent narration is also important, so I get why your feelings were split.

    Carmel @ Rabid Reads

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    1. I do like her writing so I will stick with the series.

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  2. I think I'd have a hard time with the narration. I do enjoy alternate histories though.

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    1. You still might like it. I think you'd like some of her other work too.

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  3. I've tried reading a few books by this author and nothing has clicked yet. I love how descriptive her writing is but I never really connect.

    Karen @For What It's Worth

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    1. There are times it takes me a book or two to really get into her series. Once I'm there, I'm hooked.

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  4. I keep hoping this author will come out with something that will really impress, but so far everything I have read by her hasn't . Bummer this wasn't stronger.

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    1. I really enjoyed her first series. It was odd enough that I enjoyed it. :)

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  5. I felt the same way about her first book. I struggled at times and other times thought it was amazing. I didn't continue the series though. I'm thinking maybe her style isn't for me. The book description makes it sound amazing, so I guess a good storyline but not executed perfectly.

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  6. Sounds interesting. But I think I could find myself straying while reading too. The trailer was cool. :) Thank you!

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  7. First books are always hard to judge..but you have me so curious. I love the setting, and supernatural elements. I am going to see if an audio version is available

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  8. Oooo I'm definitely curious. I understand the drifting, but that isn't a deal breaker.

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  9. curious, lots of ups and downs with this book when it comes to reviewers, all seem to be revolving around the same issue o.o

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  10. I think we had the exact same feelings about this one. Sorry it wasn't that good.

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  11. I really enjoyed her other series about the painting, so I know I like her writing style. I do tend to struggle with multiple POVs though, so I'm going to wait and see what you think of the next book before I dive into this one:) Fantastic review!

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  12. I absolutely ADORE that cover! Though I'm sorry to hear you didn't enjoy it as much as I thought you would. Multiple POVs are never an easy feat to accomplish. Great review, Melissa!

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  13. Very intriguing, but I think I will wait for your review of the next book.

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  14. Hmm, sorry to hear your attention waivered at times

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  15. I gave this one 3 stars too b/c I also found myself drifting. BUT at the same time, there were just as many parts that were downright hilarious. I don't know if I'll read the next one though . . . dat ending . . .

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  16. I really like the ideas of this author, but some how the execution of the idea doesn't quite translate well on to the page. The last book I read by her felt unfinished, but still enjoyable enough to finish it. I think I'll take a pass on this series though.

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  17. See, this is why I love your blog -- you have so many different genres and books you review! Even if they're not exactly "me" books, I like your variety. :)

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