Saturday, November 23, 2013

REVIEW: THE LAYERS BY CANDACE AUSTIN

In a world that remembers past lives, he remembers her -
how he loved her, how she killed him.

Since the Unveiling, most everyone struggles with memories of past lives, but 19-year-old David Kiplinger struggles more than most, more than anyone. When TheLayers reveals his 68 lives, shattering the record set at five, he becomes the story of the century, an overnight celebrity, and the world looks to him for an answer to the burning question—what is the point of living? 

For David, the answer has always been her--the girl he knows will come, the one he will love unconditionally, the one who will kill him.

When he’s teamed with Holly Stone to write his autobiography, he’s sure that he’s found her again, but rather than run, he relies on the signs he’s been given that this life will be different. And that’s when bad things begin to happen. 

With their lives suddenly in danger, they’re secreted away to a North Carolina mountain retreat where they tumble even further into a tangled web of passion and apprehension, love and suspicion. If they’re to have a future, they must first unravel the mystery of their past and determine once and for all if Holly is the love of his lives, his angel of death. 

Much to the couple's dismay, the fates hold true to their trickster form when all revelations come to pass on international television, setting the world on a countdown to David’s twentieth birthday—a birthday he may not live to see.



ebook346 pages
Published July 6th 2013 by Amazon
Source: eBook received from author in exchange for review
Purchase: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Our Review:
The Layers was another very wonderful surprise for me, as it is a debut indie author who is braving the waters of contacting bloggers to read and review her book...and for that simply, she is a rockstar. I can't even imagine, so first thank you Candace for finding us and asking us and sharing your words. Then, well...the book is pretty dang great. I really liked it. But...while I was intrigued by the blurb...I was pretty apprehensive about this seemingly paranormal aspect with past lives and death and doom. So, Shel...what did you think! I enjoyed it as well; it was a nice change of pace from what I had been reading.

David remembers his past lives...and we get to see tidbits of his past experiences, and there is always one constant...a girl...and she always seems to inadvertently cause his death. Seems crazy right? Well...come back to the present and he becomes an overnight celebrity because he has lived more than anyone...ever. I thought the parts of the novel were very well set up to give us background, but also keep the story moving forward. I like David a lot, and I definitely enjoyed his thoughts...and am completely on board with the entire story being in his POV after the first chapter (until the epilogue :P)

David was an endearing character. He's honest and good hearted and thoughtful in the way he approaches his new celebrity. He definitely does not take himself too seriously but at the same time seems to understand the importance of not thinking before he speaks, at least publicly. 

Holly is the girl we meet at the beginning of our story when she meets a very drunk David. He thinks she might just be the girl that has followed his soul through the universe...and plans to run away. Their chance meeting sets in motion the events that lead to his being stalked by the paparazzi and writing a biography. She is his ghost writer, but he also wants to get to know her better. It completely fit the story, but I would have liked to have been a little bit more connected to the two of them and their love story. I needed more of that! 

We got a teeny tiny taste of where her head was in the prologue but then everything else we must infer from conversations with David...which made me curious. She seemed very level headed and calm..but also a little removed from it all. I, too, would've liked to feel more chemistry or something between them. All in all, though, it was a sweet love story.

I was a little bit worried towards the end that this story might end in a cliffhanger. Well...it doesn't...so rest assured you get a conclusion to the ever elusive question "Does she kill him again?" The latter half of the story has a lot more spiritual undertones than romance, with some pretty deep stuff. The story was a very original idea, for sure, and even with all of the serious moments there are a lot of funny quips and humor to go along with it. Poor David has more close calls than any person could want between getting run over, shot at, and being allergic to bananas! Agreed...it got intense at the end and I wasn't sure who to trust but luckily my questions were answered without a cliffhanger!

This is a fun debut, and really a perfect New Adult novel with a great plot, and fun characters (Grandma Jolene..I'm looking at you!) Check it out if you're looking for something different...this fits the bill! (Aka no tattoos, no explicit sex, and no virgins...)HAHAA...right!

Courtney: 4 Stars
Shelley: 3 1/2 Stars


About the Author:
The Layers is Candace Austin's debut novel and the first in the Layers series. The sequel, One Life Later, will be available January 2014. Her fast-paced, suspenseful novels use magical realism to explore love, life, and the humorous and heart-wrenching oddities in both.

Originally from the Chicago suburbs, Candace has resided in Raleigh, North Carolina since 1986 (which practically makes her a native) with her husband of twenty years, two kids (one heading for college, the other ... kindergarten), a hefty Golden Retriever, and a Maine Coon Cat that comes and goes as he dang well pleases.

When not writing, she enjoys NC State football games (particularly the tailgating), and traveling to Maine to spend time with her parents and family on the farm.

Connect with Candace:

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