Book Review: ‘Undertow’ by K.R. Conway

February 2, 2015     Holly     Reviews

Book Review: ‘Undertow’ by K.R. ConwayUndertow by K.R. Conway
Series: Undertow #1
on January 12, 2014
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Pages: 398
Format: eBook, Kindle Edition
Source: Purchased
4 Stars

Eila Walker knows luck is not a friend, so she is downright shocked to inherit a million-dollar Cape Cod home. And yeah, her new town isn't perfect: the cheerleaders are heinous clones, the local undertow can kill ya, and her Great Grams was supposedly fried by lightning in the harbor square. Still, Eila is hopeful her luckless days are in the past . . . until history decides to repeat itself.

When drool-worthy Raef O’Reilly becomes her friendly, yet weirdly protective shadow, Eila thinks life is pretty darn perfect – until she is hauled beneath the waves by an unnatural undertow. Revealing coal-black eyes and iron-like strength as he rescues her, Raef can no longer hide what he is . . . or what she can do.

Eila, last of her kind, can supposedly channel the power of human souls, while Raef is more adept at stealing them. Even worse, the legend about her ancestor isn't such a myth, since Eila’s grandmother was one kick-butt warrior until her lightning-like power backfired. A power that is written all over Eila's DNA.

Determined to stay one step ahead of a dangerous clan that is hunting her, Raef, along with three unlikely allies, will do all they can to protect her. But as hidden pieces of their brutal histories unravel, Eila begins to understand just what went down in the harbor square and that she may be forced to follow in her grandmother’s fearless footsteps to save those she loves . . . including Raef.

Of the many wonderful things my Kindle has brought me over the last few months, my favorite has to be its ability to magically suggest books that I probably never would have picked up in the first place. And Undertow by K.R. Conway happens to be one of those novels.

My feelings on this novel are completely confused and twisted up, and I’m not really even sure that I liked what I read, but I know that I, on some primal level, need to keep reading this series. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the series. The characters are likeable (especially MJ and Ana, who were by far my favorite characters of the book), the histories that Conway sets up for the various characters are interesting and planned, if not a little far-fetched, and the setting of Massachusetts, primarily Cape Cod, makes me really crave a trip up the eastern seaboard. The story, however, was a bit predictable in who turns out to be good, who turns out to be bad, and the moments of “Don’t go down those stairs! Someone’s obviously waiting to hit you over the head.”

And yes, I did notice the stunning resemblance between Conway’s Mortis race and vampires. I am not blind. But can’t we look past that this one time? I mean, at least these guys don’t sparkle in the sun. And besides, there’s only so many ways you can make a mysterious, immortal, mega-hot book boyfriend new and exciting. I’m willing to forgive Conway of Raef and Kian’s vampire-esque qualities because both boys are super adorable.


But while I could look past the not-vampires, one thing I had a truly hard time swallowing was the incredibly limited time we actually see Eila and the others confront the main villain in the story. In fact, as a reader of the story and as someone who had become invested in the tale, I didn’t feel the least bit threatened at all. Even when Eila was plotting how to sacrifice herself, and Raef was the one who was going to help bring about her ultimate demise I kept thinking “Well, this dude’s going to end up dead, and Eila’s not going to end up dead, and then there’s going to be a hospital room and confessions of ‘We’re dangerous for each other.'” It was all very predictable, but it was a happy ending, so I can’t complain all that much, I suppose.

All in all, Conway’s Undertow was a fun read to sit back and enjoy, and I’m looking forward to diving into the second novel in the series, Stormfront, to see what kind of trouble Eila, Raef, Kian, Ana and MJ can get into this time around. I’m hoping it won’t be as predictable, but before I dive into Stormfront, I’ll be reading Cruel Summer, a novella revolving around Ana and Kian’s summer, set to come out in March. Stay tuned for a review soon!

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