From School Library Journal
When Barrie returns from San Francisco after her godfather’s death, her home’s been besieged by paranormal investigators drawn to the Fire Carrier legend. Worse, Eight knew but didn’t tell her. Also straining their romance is his decision about what college to attend (will he follow his dream of going far away or stay local for Barrie?), and Barrie must decide if he loves her or if he’s being compelled by his Beaufort gift. Multiple encounters with shadowy, mysterious Obadiah—who reveals a personal connection to the gifts and Colesworth curse—lead Barrie reluctantly to her treacherous cousin Cassie. But Obadiah’s of uncertain trustworthiness, and the magic he unleashes has unexpected consequences. Meanwhile, Cassie’s desperate to save her home by finding its legendary buried treasure and brings in an archaeological team. She also experiences the onset of PTSD as a result of a traumatic incident in her past—one echoed in a ghostly flashback she and Barrie experience of the Colesworth plantation during the Civil War, a painful moment in the family’s history. While the multiple storylines and subplots help perk up the slow pace, they’re unbalanced and result in a lackluster climax that doesn’t resolve the more interesting questions.
Uneven but also atmospheric and packed with magic and mysteries. (Kirkus August 15, 2015)
This sequel begins with seventeen-year-old Barrie stillreeling from her godfather’s death and the dramatic events that occurred at theend of Compulsion (SimonPulse, 2014/VOYA December 2014).Reporters are loitering just outside her South Carolina plantation, and otherinterlopers are hunting for either ghosts or treasure. Barrie is slowlyadapting to her role as the guardian of the Watson lands. She is alsonavigating her new relationship with Eight, which is complicated by thestrength of their magical gifts. When a mysterious man appears with strongmagic and tempting promises, Barrie is drawn even further into a world of oldsecrets, family scandals, and dark magic.
This is a charming series, with the Low Country a perfect setting for afamily beset by magical gifts and voodoo curses and vicious feuds that lastcenturies. Barrie is on the cusp of adulthood, and it shows, as her decisionsrange from being surprisingly mature to cringingly foolish. She is a solidheroine, following her instincts and trying to do the right thing for her land,her family, herself, and her love, Eight. This book is not quite as strong asits predecessor, and it definitely feels like the bridge book in trilogy. Fansof the first novel will be happy to read the further adventures of Barrie andher clan, however, and will undoubtedly be eagerly awaiting the finalinstallment. (VOYA October 1, 2015)
After escaping the clutches of her villainous uncle in Compulsion (2014), Barrie wants life to get back to normal. Setting up a restaurant at the plantation house seems like a good start, but when an enigmatic apparition offers to remove a major obstacle to her relationship with Eight, Barrie is lured by the appeal of easy romance, even as she is unsettled by the terms of the deal. Though the haphazard pacing and sometimes cloudy plot take away from the sultry, magical atmosphere of this southern gothic romance, Boone nonetheless sets up an enticing mystery that, hopefully, will be solved in the forthcoming third and final volume. (Booklist Online September 17, 2015)