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{October 20, 2013}   {Review} Awakening by Christy Dorrity (The Geis #1)

18074584From Goodreads: Because some Celtic stories won’t be contained in myth . . .

A little magic has always run in sixteen-year-old McKayla McCleery’s family—at least that’s what she’s been told. McKayla’s eccentric Aunt Avril travels the world as a psychic for the FBI, and her mother can make amazing delicacies out of the most basic of ingredients. But McKayla doesn’t think for a second that the magic is real—it’s just good storytelling. Besides, McKayla doesn’t need magic. She recently moved to beautiful Star Valley, Wyoming, and already she has a best friend, a solo in her upcoming ballet recital—and the gorgeous guy in her physics class keeps looking her way.

When an unexpected fascination with Irish dance leads McKayla to seek instruction from the mute, crippled janitor at her high school, she learns that her family is not the only one with unexplained abilities.

After Aunt Avril comes to Star Valley in pursuit of a supernatural killer, people begin disappearing, and the lives of those McKayla holds most dear are threatened. When the janitor reveals that an ancient curse, known as a geis, has awakened deadly powers that defy explanation, McKayla is forced to come to terms with what is real and what is fantasy.

A thrilling debut novel based in Celtic mythology, Awakening is a gripping young adult fantasy rife with magic, romance, and mystery.


This story had a very interesting premise, mixing magic, Irish dance, an alternate universe, and a curse unlike any other in order to set the stage for the events that unfold within Awakening.  McKayla is a great female lead, with a kick-butt mentality and faithful heart, she wraps readers around her finger from the get go, making them fall in love with her almost immediately.  I really enjoyed her and, though experiencing many hardships, I loved that she kept her head up and stayed positive, which is extremely difficult in the face of adversity.  Her slow acceptance of magic also gave her a more realistic feel as she didn’t jump on board with her Aunt Avril right away, and she questioned information put before her without blind acceptance.  While I tend to really like blind acceptance in my fictional worlds, I also understand that it isn’t realistic, and so I believe Dorrity did a fantastic job bring McKayla to life.

The portion of the novel dedicated to dance, as it were, was a bit above me as I’m not a dancer and I have no ambition or care for anything dance related. But in truth, it is a very unique and interesting way to bring about the truth behind the mute janitor’s world, and I applaud Dorrity for presenting dance in this way, as I’d never have thought of it myself.

I think of all the characters, Aunt Avril and her eccentric ways, as well as the magical lizard, were my favorite.  They were just so different and added a different feel to the entire novel, which fantasy lovers will no doubt highly enjoy as they’re completely different from any characters I’ve read about in my books.

Celtic mythology is also something I know little about, and this is the first book I’ve read that actually touches on the topic, as far as I can remember.  It has actually really stirred my curiosity and now I’d love to do a little more research, and read more novels on the subject, as I feel it’s one not very many authors attempt.  Overall, this was a completely unique novel (with an AMAZING cover) and I highly suggest magical lovers scoop it up.  I am looking forward to more from Dorrity, though perhaps a little less dance on my end.  Three and a half stars.

3 stars

I received this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.


Sound interesting and that cover is freaky!! :)

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