Review: Catching Stars by Cayla Keenan

Catching Stars by Cayla Keenan
Published by: Oftomes Publishing
Released: 8th May 2018
Page Count: 352 Pages
Edition: Kindle
Genre: YA Fantasy

Thank you to Oftomes Publishing for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Jayin Ijaad is in hiding. A witch with powerful abilities, she carves out a life for herself in the slums of Pavaal, a city rotting from the inside out. When an old acquaintance tracks her down, Jayin is dragged back into a world she tried to escape -- and is determined to escape again. 

Maddix Kell is on the run. After two years in prison for crimes he did not commit, Maddix escapes and seeks out a legendary order of witchhunters who are his only chance to find justice. 

But all is not as it seems and Maddix soon finds himself on the run from the people he sought as allies. When their paths collide, Jayin and Maddix must put aside their prejudices and forge an uneasy alliance that could crumble at any moment. But if they want to survive in Aestos -- a brutal kingdom where magic and corruption lie hand in hand and enemies lurk around every corner -- they must first survive each other.

As a big lover of YA Fantasy it came as a shock to me that I have hardly read any featuring Witches. Bad right? This, I knew needed to change and when I found out about Catching Stars I knew I had to read it. I couldn't wait to explore the world of fantasy in YA featuring witches.

Jayin Ijaad is in hiding. A witch with extraordinary abilities, she carves a life for herself in the slums on Pavaal - a city that is rotting. When an old acquaintance tracks her down Jayin is forced back into a world she tried so hard to escape from. Maddix Kell is on the run. After two years in prison for a crime he didn't commit, he escapes and starts seeking out a legendary order of witchhunters - his only chance to find justice. When their paths collide Jayin and Maddix must put aside their difference to forge an alliance that could crumble at any moment. 

At first I found Catching Stars to be pretty slow going. It did take a while for the plot to develop and for the action to kick in, but once this took effect I was sucked in. I found that I needed to preservere through the first few chapters to really start to appreciate this incredible story. Once I got into the action packed drama I couldn't stop reading - I had to physically remind myself to stop reading and go to bed a few times. 

The magic system in Catching Stars really intrigued me. I was especially fascinated by the different types of Witches and the magic they could do. Jayin's magic blew me away! The descriptions of it were just stunning and I needed more information. Hopefully this will be explored more in the sequel. I am praying. Magic is one of my favourite things within this genre and it is done perfectly in this book.

Jayin was such a bad ass character who I adored from the moment I was introduced to her. She's feisty, fiery, tough and just all round epic. She's an outstanding heroine and a character that girls can look up to. We need more feminist role models in YA and Jayin is certainly one of those. Maddix took a while for me to warm up to. I just didn't find his story arc as thrilling as Jayin's. However, once the plot started to get going I did find myself rooting for Maddix as well as Jayin.

As you know I hate insta-love in fiction so it was refreshing to read about a slow burning relationship. At the start Jayin and Maddix absolutely despise one another but over time they start to tolerate and then like each other. We do start to get an idea that they truly care for each other but no romance is hinted and I like that. I commend Cayla for letting their relationship grow naturally with not forced romance story arcs. It also goes to show that you don't need two characters to fall in love to make a good story.

Catching Stars was a thrilling read full of magic and adventure that kept me on the edge of my seat. It is definitely one of my favourite YA Fantasy reads of the year so far and I am very much looking forward to the next book in the series. 

Author Bio

Cayla has fostered a love of books since grade school, where she could be found reading on top of the monkey bars at recess or hiding The Magic Tree House under her desk. It wasn't long until she started writing, scribbling stories in notebooks that will hopefully never be read.

When not writing, Cayla works to earn her BA in English and Sociology and Fordham University in New York City and can be found exploring the city's many excellent parks and bookstores. She maintains a healthy diet of musical theatre, Netflix television shows and early 2000s pop-punk, and firmly believes in the magical properties of red lipstick.

1 comment:

  1. You can rarely find a YA fantasy these days where the male and female protagonists don't fall in love with each other; this indeed sounds refreshing!! I also like when the magic system is well-developed and thoroughly explained. I enjoyed your review, Catching Stars sounds awesome!

    Ronnie @ Paradise Found


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