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221 Reviews
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40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review by YA Book Haven
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I contacted Megg Jensen a few weeks back about a review copy of "Anathema". I've been reading wonderful things about the book online and I was eager to see just how good it is. When I finished this book, my mouth fell open in shock. "Anathema" is quite possibly one of the best young adult novels I've read this year. Megg Jensen has truly...
Published on August 15, 2011 by Nicole's YA Book Haven

versus
103 of 111 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars What a fantastic story
I would really rather give this book 3.5.

Despite this, i would like to say the Megg Jensen is an author i will be keeping a close eye on in the future. I think that she has a lot of talent. I will certainly be reading more of her work in the future.

The plot behind the book was great! (4.5 / 5) I love the ideas and concepts. It was the story itself...
Published on April 21, 2011 by Sarah From QLD


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103 of 111 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars What a fantastic story, April 21, 2011
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This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
I would really rather give this book 3.5.

Despite this, i would like to say the Megg Jensen is an author i will be keeping a close eye on in the future. I think that she has a lot of talent. I will certainly be reading more of her work in the future.

The plot behind the book was great! (4.5 / 5) I love the ideas and concepts. It was the story itself that drew me into this book. I spent every single second reading this book itching to find out what happened next. The plot moved very well and i enjoyed every minute reading this book. The characters were also well crafted. Their different energies flew off the page. I really felt the different personalities shining through.

What i found difficult, was that the author was dropping subtle hints about plot lines that actually were not that subtle. Readers get a lot out of one line. Some of it was very obvious and a few of the 'hints' sounded very false, like they were in there just to drop a hint to the readers.

Secondly I found that some of the speech was a bit disjointed. It slipped from historical sounding to casual modern language. I think it would have improved the story if the speech had been better crafted.

On occasion i also felt that important ideas were just throw in to get them out of the way and a couple of the scenes were underdeveloped.

Despite these little problems the story was engaging to say the least. Junior readers may like the extra hints the author provides and the slightly underdeveloped scenes certainly kept the plot moving at a great pace. Great for people who might put down a book at the slightest pause. It also meant that i could fly through the book and finish it in 1/2 a day.

I would recommend reading this book. I will perhaps even read it again myself and i will certainly be reading more of her work as it comes through.

Great book, Well done!
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40 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review by YA Book Haven, August 15, 2011
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My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I contacted Megg Jensen a few weeks back about a review copy of "Anathema". I've been reading wonderful things about the book online and I was eager to see just how good it is. When I finished this book, my mouth fell open in shock. "Anathema" is quite possibly one of the best young adult novels I've read this year. Megg Jensen has truly crafted a phenomenal story with interesting characters. It's the perfect beginning for what is sure to be an amazing trilogy!

"Anathema" is the story of Reychel, a slave girl on the verge of her fifteenth birthday, an occasion she's been dreading. Upon her birthday she will be branded with her master's symbol, a box, on the nape of her neck below her bald scalp in which she will be claimed by her master. She's scared of the pain that will come with the branding and she wishes her friend, Ivy, who has gone missing, was there to help her through it.

Upon one of her meetings with her master, Reychel tells him a story one in which she states she will not be branded. Her master becomes angry with her, even though Reychel swears the story was false, and sends her to the dungeon where she meets a woman that will help her escape. Avoiding spoilers: Reychel will discover secrets that will change the world as she knows it; she'll realize that those she's held close to her heart have been lying to her for years.

What's nice about Reychel is that she holds a great power, one that she doesn't quite understand. She's a strong, determined character, and I like that about her. I just purchased the second book on Friday, I can't wait to see where the story is headed! Megg Jensen is an author to watch!
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49 of 57 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A great first draft of a story, September 28, 2011
This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
I got this book because the Amazon reviews were so complementary and I was excited to start a new series. Unfortunately this book reads like (to steal a phrase from one of my writing professors) an "ugly first draft." The story is unique and shows a lot of promise but the writing is very disjointed. There is little effort put into character development and none put into the relationships between the characters. The dialogue is uninspired at best, and painfully unrealistic at the worst. It was downright painful to read at times and laughable at others.

This book *could* be worth reading but it needs a lot of editing to clean up the dialogue, descriptions, and plot. If you're looking for a novel that is well crafted and polished, then skip it.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good premise, but huge lack of character development. Okay, But Unrealistic., May 26, 2012
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This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
It was a good premise, and some of the characters were likeable, but it seemed very unbelieveable. Reychel is only fifteen in this story, and the romance between her and Mark (who is a ridiculously high ranked soldier for his age) is severely lacking. One page you're just hanging out under the stars, and the next, BOOM! They love each other and totally understand commitment like the mature 15 and 17 year old they are.

The story also lacked description. When one of the gifted people conjured a portal, there was no description of what the main character saw. How would this girl who had never seen a portal before not be shocked? She wouldn't know what a portal looked like.

The diction used in the story was something that constantly threw me off. I think I could possibly have overlooked the lack of description and development and called it decent if the writer hadn't thrown in hundreds of little reminders in the form of the words "stuff" and "like that" and other sloppy vocabulary they wouldn't have used in a quasi-medieval society.

Its major redeeming quality would have to be its storyline. That was well done and I loved the way Ivy, the villain, was portrayed. The weaving in of her master being her father was perfect, and totally humanized the characters and made them more realistic. Mark, however, couldn't really be redeemed. I kept picturing him as some civil war soldier who was trying to pass for 18. Interesting, but I think the author should have spent a lot more time on it and made it a lot longer. It is a good story and deserves more attention and depth than she gave it.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fabulous fantasy read!, April 25, 2011
By 
Kiki Deister "The Caffeinated Diva" (Fort Huachuca, AZ United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
Anathema is the first in a new trilogy by Megg Jensen, and a wonderful start to it. The story centers around Reychel, a slave girl who has known no other life than that of slavery. But, even though she is a slave, she has always been treated differently by her master, mysteriously both being afforded special treatment and being restricted even more than the other slaves. That mystery is at the center of the plot and it's characters. For the first part of the book, it is almost as if two distinct worlds have been created by the author, with Reychel so very separate from the outside world of the other characters. It was a very interesting way of adding interest to the story. Reychel's complete, and bizarre, isolation kept me wondering why, and that kept me thoroughly engrossed. There were a lot of twists and turns and the story was very well-paced. I have to say, I was absolutely POSITIVE I knew where the story was going for one of the major twists towards the end,... and I was completely wrong! I love the unexpected!!

The characters were wonderfully developed, each of them having their own story that wove intricately together to form the full story. The characters were all equally well-developed, regardless of how big their role was within the story line, For me, that makes for a much richer read. Each of them was entirely believable and real, even set in a fantasy world.

And while I realize we have all been told not to judge a book by it's cover, but it is a completely safe thing to do with this particular book! I recommend you run, not walk, to get yourself a copy of this wonderful book!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Just like Creative Writing Class, January 12, 2013
By 
ReBecca (Rockford, IL) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
I think the author had good ideas but poor execution. Pre-teens might enjoy the book if they haven't done a lot of advanced reading, but I had trouble fighting my urge to critique it with red pen in hand. The foreshadowing goes a little overboard and lacks subtlety. Dialogue feels contrived. The plot wants to be complicated but never makes it. The characters aren't well-developed, and the writing style and diction fail to put the reader into this world. I found myself rolling my eyes and mentally rewriting things the whole time I was reading. The story had potential, but could use some heavy refinement. I would suggest reading Obernewtyn: The Obernewtyn Chronicles 1 instead. It's a similar concept, but better executed, and the writing gets better as the series goes on.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It Has Potential, January 18, 2012
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A very light and easy read, Anathema was what I expected. No more. No less. Reychel is the strong yet innocent heroine with a great destiny. Too bad that I saw it coming. I love it when there's a mystery shrouding the characters, and for Reychel, it was her Gift and the treatment she received as a slave. I was disappointed it when it was more than apparent what the nature of her Gift was and thus her role in the great scheme of the rebellion. In return, I was quite surprised by her origin story, not overwhelmingly so, but enough to make up for the not too subtle introduction of her Gift.

Besides Reychel and Kendek, I felt as if most of the characters lacked dimension. All the characters were so singular in their role and personality, that I couldn't get attached to any one character. A travesty, in my opinion, since I think it is vital for the reader to be able to relate to the characters. Another downer was the pacing of the romance. It just happened over night, or that's how I felt. No development whatsoever. Now, I do understand that the length of the book would constrain such details, but really... The affections from Grey were much more easy to digest than those of Mark's. Otherwise, the pacing of the plot was great.

My biggest pet peeve is the ending. It was abrupt and crude, but it did earn a reaction from me which begs that I may snag the next book in the series to see what happens.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Apparently, I am in the minority - others found this story to be very well written, September 13, 2011
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This book must be written for YAs 15 years old or younger as I really think they would enjoy this story. I found this story predictable, overly dramatic and long. The dialogue is stilted; the metaphors are so awful, they just became funny and there is absolutely no romance, or should I say, a badly written romance. It was basically, "oh, he is cute, let's have one conversation. Ok, now we are in love" (which still looked like friendship). Seriously, that is how emotionally and succinctly written it is. There was more (overdone and unbelievable) emotional drama over Ivy leaving than over her feelings for Mark.

I see from the reviews that I am in the minority in believing that this story really needed more editing, fleshed out characters, and better writing. It is more of an outline of a story, not the finished product - a work in progress. The premise is great - the writing is not. I am not really sure why others found this story so beautifully written, I know I did not and based on the ending, there is a second installment, which I will not be reading.

Those of you who liked this story would probably also like Deep Blue Secret (The Water Keepers, Book 1), Sojourner (Book 1) (Sojourner Series) andMeant to Be.

Would I/Did I buy it? Yes
Would I read it again? No
Would I recommend it to friends? No
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Suddenly stops during high point?! Suspicious of the excellent reviews., July 10, 2013
This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
I started enjoying this book--even though I'm not into fantasy stories. I also understood it to be part one of a trilogy, but this author didn't bother to tie up ANY of the loose ends. In the middle of the crisis point the story abruptly ends. Virtually nothing is resolved! It's insulting to the reader to try to trick them into buying your next book. I also recommend the author make it a point to proofread the work next time. Will not read any more by this writer.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Original premise but..., February 16, 2013
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This review is from: Anathema (Cloud Prophet Trilogy, #1) (Kindle Edition)
The story had much to offer but for some reason the author felt it necessary to rehash parts over and over, to explain when explanations weren't necessary. I don't know if she felt the scenes needed to be longer or if she didn't have enough confidence in her writing or her audience. Without the constant attribution, she would have had a tighter story and faster moving plot. Still, I did read to the end. A portion of the second in the sequel was offered, but I could not go far. Once again, rehashing of book one instead of weaving into the storyline of book two. I think the author has talent and a great imagination but I will not continue the series. Thanks, Linda Schenck
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