Black Amaranth by Sasha Hibbs

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Black Amaranth by Sasha Hibbs
Publisher: Evernight Teen
Genre: Paranormal, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, YA
Length: Full Length (216 Pages)
Age Recommendation: 14+
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Reviewed by Cyclamen

Eighteen-year-old Ally Watson arrives home from high school graduation, more than a little annoyed that her Uncle Argyle—Ally’s legal guardian and only surviving relative—didn’t even bother showing up. But instead of berating him for his forgetfulness, Ally finds him in a life-or-death battle with a monster. Argyle manages to kill the creature, and gives Ally a parcel containing a destiny she never knew existed.

Ally, along with her best friends Michael, Jessica, and David, hurry to Georgia to uncover the truth of Uncle Argyle’s secrets, and the meaning of the mysterious marks that Ally bears. Are the marks related to the blacksmith mythology of her ancestors? Who are these heavenly warriors who show up in the oddest of places? And will an ancient gypsy curse destroy the very things Ally fights to save?

Black Amaranth: a simple flower, a symbol with an ancient legacy, a conduit for prophecy…while faith and hope are essential to the journey, Ally soon discovers that love is the most powerful force of all.

Ally Watson’s high school graduation proves to be more of a turning point in her life than she could ever have imagined. She is upset because her only living family member, her Uncle Argyle, didn’t show up, but she soon learns that he had a very good reason. He was in a life-or-death battle with a monster, and in killing the monster, her uncle opens up a destiny for Ally that she never could have imagined.

Sasha Hibbs captured me immediately with Uncle Argyle’s battle against a necrosapien, and once captured, I couldn’t put the book down. Ally is a typical eighteen-year-old who wants to leave home after graduation and head to college with her two best friends, Jessica and David. Suddenly everything has changed and she is escaping with a package her uncle thrust into her hands, racing away from the battle with the twins, Jessica and David, and her best friend, Michael.

The novel is Ally’s coming of age story, and her decisions will affect all of humankind. Hibbs has developed Ally’s character fully making her easy to identify with. The other supporting characters are also fleshed out in great detail. In addition, Hibbs has created an entire mythology involving the descendants of Vulcan, and the details of the mythology are well presented and clearly defined.

In addition, the plot is complex, action-packed, and exciting. There are twists and turns which cause the suspense to build to a terrifying conclusion. Ally learns of her family history and she is forced to confront the reality of who she really is. She discovers secrets upon secrets, and she has to make the most important decision of her life before she can fully assimilate all that she has learned. She has guides along the way, but the path is unclear and she is uncertain. She has to decide if coming into her true identity means abandoning those closest to her.

I really enjoyed following Ally through her adventures and it wasn’t until the end that I even began to see where I thought she should go. The ending is really just the beginning as this is the first in The Vulcan Legacies series. I certainly hope that the second novel is published soon!

Readers of fantasy with a mythological twist will certainly enjoy Black Amaranth. Just be sure that when you begin reading it that you have a free schedule, as it is a hard book to put down.

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