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Review: The Curse Keepers Collection

The Curse Keepers Collection
The Curse Keepers Collection by Denise Grover Swank
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have previously read and reviewed each of the titles in this omnibus. What’s new to me is the cover, and the introduction to it from Denise. Both of which are excellent! I feel like Denise is talking to me with the small bit of insight into how she wrote the series. I would even love an annotated edition of the books, but that’s a whole lot to ask for! 😉 The Curse Keepers series caught my imagination from the very beginning. It’s got me hook, line, and sinker! I ADORE this series and cannot wait to see it continue!

THE CURSE KEEPERS:
The Curse Keepers is a fascinating tale! At the heart of the story is Ellie Lancaster and Collin Dailey, the lost colony of Roanoke, and one nasty Native American curse that protects the world as we know it from ancient gods, monsters, and other things that go bump in the night. I instantly loved Ellie and her best friend Claire. Collin’s introduction left me wanting to know so much more than is ever revealed in this first book of the series. I initially LOVED Collin, but all of that changed very quickly at the end. I want to cause bodily harm to that man. The one question I kept asking is: why are all of these gods and creatures going after Ellie instead of Collin? It drove me bananas! And kept me reading, of course.

I love this series in a big way. It’s engaging, fast paced, intriguing, and most of all a whole lot of fun. This book ends on a BIG cliffhanger, so you’ll definitely want to read The Curse Breakers right away!

*****Five stars from this happy reader!!!!!*****

THE CURSE BREAKERS:
The Curse Breakers picks up not long after the ending of The Curse Keepers. Ellie is dealing with the fallout of Collin Dailey’s perceived betrayal, and the gods and monsters that were released when the gate to Popogusso was opened. Ellie has lost her father, her only living relative, and is left with her step-mother, Myra, to handle operations at the B&B.
Mayhem ensues as Ellie is picking up the pieces the ever mysterious Collin left behind. She has grown and is trying to understand her role as a Curse Keeper. She seeks out assistance from professor David Preston. He’s entirely insufferable in their first encounter, but he ends up in Manteo studying the (now recovered) Lost Colony site. He quickly becomes more involved and LIKEABLE!
I’m not going to give too much away, but Collin does reappear a few times. And he swoops in to save the day at the end. And speaking of events near the end of the book… Okeus is one big creep. I mean… wow. I’m just going to tell you now that his boundaries are quite limited. Almost non-existent.
This second installment of the Curse Keepers series has left me thirsty for more. It’s just as engaging and well-paced as the first novel. I cannot wait for the third! *****Five stars*****

THE CURSE DEFIERS:
The Curse Defiers is quite the whirlwind read! I went in expecting the unexpected and I got more than I bargained for. Ellie’s relationship with David is kind of sweet. And he’s not at all like Collin, so that alone gets bonus points from me. Not only is Ellie being harassed in her role as Curse Keeper, she’s also pieced together memories of her mother’s death. Her very existence boils down to careful manipulation by a god. I won’t tell you which one here, you’ll have to find that out for yourself.

Claire takes a small role in aiding Ellie, and I truly hope we see more of her abilities in future installments! There’s a character death that I was hoping wasn’t true until it was revealed. Collin also redeemed himself for me. I won’t say how, but he did it. That does not mean I want to see him and Ellie together just because they were made for each other. It has to happen naturally, and the man’s got some hefty competition with David around. And this coming from a person who despises love triangles!

I have to say that I was so terribly heartbroken for Ellie for multiple reasons! I felt such a heavy sense of loss as the story closed out. I’m absolutely anxious for the novella featuring Collin. I wish I could time travel and read it now! The fourth book of the series is even farther away, but you can bet I’ll be reading it!

Finally: Okeus. Go away. You creepy weirdo. And Ahone? You’re terrible, too. Love, me! 😉 *****FIVE STARS*****

THIS PLACE IS DEATH:
This Place is Death is SUCH a big part of this series! I’d even say it’s required reading before the first Curse Keepers book! You will be witness to the actual original curse being created! It also will help you to understand the curse more.

I also appreciate Denise’s take on the Lost Colony! No one truly knows what happened, so keep an open mind and enjoy this fictitious journey!

I really felt the betrayal of Dare when Manteo turned on him. It’s a mirror of what happens at the end of the first Curse Keepers book. I love it.

This novella is NOT a required read, but it will give you more insight into the series.

THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING:
I loved this short installment in the Curse Keepers series. Getting to see Ellie’s parents in action together was great, even though it was short-lived. It’s no secret that Ellie’s mother died when she was young, but being witness to it was heart-wrenching! Even if it weren’t for the curse, I would imagine that it would be an event a 7-year old would pray to forget.

I loved seeing Ellie’s and Claire’s friendship. They’re really more like sisters!

I’ll avoid the spoiler of the major twists involving Ellie’s mother’s murder, but I will say that while it was shocking I wasn’t fully surprised. It goes to show that the curse and those who enacted it have been behind everything in a major way from the very start. I’m not sure if I should be afraid for Ellie, or afraid for Ahone/Okeus!

As this was a novella, it was a quick read! It gave great insight into a part of the series that I’m sure will play a major role as Denise continues the series. I’m greatly looking forward to The Curse Defiers and everything to follow!

Five stars

THIS IS YOUR DESTINY:
**Possible spoilers ahead! Please do not read if you have not read the first three books and two novellas of the The Curse Keepers series!**

**My review is based on my NetGalley copy**

This novella answered almost everything I wanted to know about how Collin F. Dailey ended up in the restaurant with Ellie Dare Lancaster to break the curse in The Curse Keepers. After reading this one, I absolutely understand his intentions in all three books released so far. I also understand why he is always so reluctant to share his information with Ellie <— this is something I always wanted to know! I’ve always wanted to reach through the book and slap some sense into him!

There’s a lot of manipulation and lies that comes with all of the gods and monsters of this world and it’s absolutely infuriating! Obviously they can’t all be straightforward with their intentions all of the time, so we’re left with characters who are struggling to make sense of it all. That’s where Collin seems to be stuck. Before this novella I always loved to HATE Collin, but now I don’t quite feel the same. My opinion was already changing in The Curse Defiers. He was made to believe that the Dare Keeper was essentially being trained to kill him one day, so he did his best to guard himself around Ellie. I think most of us know that isn’t at all the case, but Collin had no way of knowing the truth of the matter going in.

I think the timing of this novella is perfect, too. Reading this before The Curse Defiers would have given too much information too soon. I enjoyed the backstory of Collin’s family. We’ve always seen so much of Ellie’s and NOTHING of Collin’s. His whole family is so terribly splintered, but I wonder if his grandmother or brother will come back to play a role in future books? His grandmother’s knowledge could be useful if she can set aside what she thinks she knows about the Dare family and their role in the bigger picture. I would like to see him repair his relationship with Connor, his brother. I would also like to know what exactly happened to Collin’s father since the mystery of his disappearance remains (not that anyone misses him)!

I always thought that the two Keepers should work together, and now I’m sure of it. Everything I’ve seen thus far tells me they need each other whether or not they like it. Both Collin and Ellie have a lot of work head for them. They’ve got to somehow piece their lives back together while fighting crazy gods and monsters. I’m sure it’ll be one heck of a ride! I am absolutely excited to see where the series goes next! *****FIVE STARS*****

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