A breath of fresh air in YA Paranormal Romance

I found “Xoe: or Vampires, Werewolves and Demons, oh my!” through WordPress, when I began following Sara C. Rothle’s blog. I immediately put it on my reading list, because I expected that it had potential as a popular read, since YA paranormal romance seems to be such a hot genre in the past few years. If you’re following my blog, you may have noticed Sara’s suggestion that I add her book on my blog post that already included her book in my current reading list!

What I didn’t expect was that I would personally love this book. Although I did mark it to read fairly soon and planned, as usual, to try to be the most fair about the writing, YA paranormal romance is just not my thing. I have never read the “Twilight” books, nor have I watched any of the movies. The closest experience I have ever had with them is as a “second-hand” listener, when my mother-in-law played portions of the book on tape on a few road-trips. I never felt enough interest to pick up or borrow the books, borrow the tapes or watch the movies. I added “Xoe” to my list of books to read soon because I felt it was a genre that might be of interest or relevance to my readers, not because it was really a “must-read” of my own.

I was in for a pleasant surprise – finding a book that provided a breath of fresh air into the staleness of my opinions of the YA paranormal romance genre.

“Xoe: or Vampires, Werewolves and Demons, oh my!” introduces three teenage girls – Xoe, Lucy and Allison – who are in store for some major life changes, and not only from puberty. Throughout the pages, the reader is introduced to a cast of supporting characters that range from new friends to villains and from human to super-natural. All of this is managed with what I felt was a real respect for the difficulty that is the teenage years, without being overly “angsty.”

As previously mentioned, I have not read any of the Twilight books – they just don’t appeal to me – and so I can’t make a fair assessment of whether this series would appeal to the same reader. I have shared a link to this book on Amazon with friends and family who I know enjoyed the Twilight series and have asked them to let me know what they think if they read it. If I hear back, I’ll be sure to update with comments, and if anyone who has read the “Twilight” series reads this book, as well, I’d be interested to hear your take on it here. I would suspect it would have similar appeal, and might even be a more enjoyable series.

I am really amazed to find myself thinking that this is a series I’d like to come back to in the future. Simply because of that, I’d say this book is a must-read for any fan of the YA paranormal romance genre. And if you’re looking for a fun, easy read, and enjoy any fantasy, I’d strongly suggest this book, even if the genre isn’t your favorite. Like me, you may find yourself pleasantly surprised!

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