Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Crane (Legends Saga #1) by Stacey Rourke Review

Hey readers, Ethan here with you after a week long hiatus! I apologize for the lack of content but I needed a break! I'm here to share my thoughts with you guys on one of my all-time favorite series. Over the next few days, I'll be reviewing all three novels in this incredible trilogy. This review has been in the works for a long time, but I'm so excited to share it with you guys just in time for the Halloween season. What are we raving about? Crane the first novel in The Legends Saga by the incredible Stacey Rourke. Before we get to my thoughts, here's a bit about the novel and our author, Stacey Rourke:

The Horseman is unending,
his presence shan’t lessen.
If you break the curse,
you become the legend.

Washington Irving and Rip Van Winkle had no choice but to cover up the deadly truth behind Ichabod Crane’s disappearance. Centuries later, a Crane returns to Sleepy Hollow awakening macabre secrets once believed to be buried deep.

What if the monster that spawned the legend lived within you?

Now, Ireland Crane, reeling from a break-up and seeking a fresh start, must rely on the newly awakened Rip Van Winkle to discover the key to channeling the darkness swirling within her. Bodies are piling high and Ireland is the only one that can save Sleepy Hollow by embracing her own damning curse.

But is anyone truly safe when the Horseman rides?

Only $0.99 for a limited time!

Stacey Rourke

RONE Award Winner for Best YA Paranormal Work of 2012 for Embrace, a Gryphon Series Novel
Young Adult and Teen Reader voted Author of the Year 2012
Turning Pages Magazine Winner for Best YA book of 2013 & Best Teen Book of 2013

Stacey Rourke lives in Michigan with her husband, two beautiful daughters, and two giant, dogs. She loves to travel, has an unhealthy shoe addiction and considers herself blessed to make a career out of talking to the imaginary people that live in her head. She is currently hard at work on the continuations of this thrilling Legends Saga, as well as other literary projects.


My Thoughts:

I have a bit of a confession that may come as a huge shock to some of my readers. I'm not really a fan of the classics. Shocking, right? Don't get me wrong, there are tons of them I like, but when it comes to mainstream classical literature, I can usually take or leave most of it. One of the very few exceptions are the works of Washington Irving. Since I was a young reader, I've been obsessed with the tales of Sleepy Hollow and Rip van Winkle. I love the idea of literature from the 'New World'. That's really right up my alley. I never would have imagined that one day I'd run into a series based around the works of one of my all time favorite authors, then I was introduced to Stacey Rourke. 

I actually read Crane for the first time before I ever started blogging. The summary and that beautiful cover alone were enough to reel me in. I absolutely loved Crane but I had kind of forgotten about it to be honest. It wasn't until I met Rourke for the first time this past summer at UtopYA that I fell back in love with this series. All it took was seeing those covers again to my my heart leap out of my chest. I knew a reread was in order. And I'll tell ya what, I fell in love all over again.

From the very first page, Rourke captures your attention. I can honestly say that I had the hardest time setting this one down, it's near-perfection on every page. Rourke uses one of my favorite literary elements to perfectly weave together two different stories in one fashion. Alternating chapters tell the stories of Ichabod Crane in the eighteenth century and Ireland Crane in the present day. Seeing the reflective roles and history behind each character really helped to shape the course of the novel's events in the greatest possible way. Everyone knows the story of Sleepy Hollow, or do they? Is the Horseman really what he seems? What fiction did Irving weave and how much was rooted in fact? 

Rourke combines history and the perfect amount of fantasy to keep even the most critical of readers at attention. Each alternating chapter had me liking that time frame the most, I couldn't pick which was my favorite. 

The plot to Crane is fairly straightforward, but at times can get very confusing if you aren't paying attention. This is true of any story with alternating timelines, but in a story where legends come to life and every detailed facet of the story is important, you really have to be reading on your A-game. When Ireland Crane moves to Tarrytown, New York in pursuit of a new career, she never imagined her surname would bring about the horrors of the town. Can Ireland, with her new-found knowledge of the history and the legend, unravel the clues before the Hessian takes another life, possibly even one she loves? Along with her mysterious new friend, Rip van Winkle, Ireland must fight the legends that seek to destroy her future. 

If you aren't sold yet, you're crazy.

When it comes to the characters, Rourke does an incredible job of keeping true to both the time period and the original works of Washington Irving. She truly has crafted a 'legend' all her own. Of all the amazing characters in this novel, I have to say that Rip is my favorite. Having been awoken in the 21st century after nearly 300 years of sleep, I laughed so ridiculously hard at some of the one liners he had or that pertained to him. Can you imagine a sarcastic, foul smelling, old, bearded man randomly coming into your life? Each character is full of life, purpose, and passion. I couldn't be more impressed if I tried. 

Rourke also knocks it out of the park in terms of the setting. Anyone who has read Irving's original works or seen any kind of Sleepy Hollow adaptation has a very particular view of Tarrytown, and Rourke's works fit right in. New York in autumn, wooden covered bridges, sprawling landscapes, foggy cemeteries in the moonlight, Rourke has created a setting of true literary perfection. 

From cover to cover I was thoroughly entertained. I laughed, I teared up, I had goosebumps: Crane is everything I was looking for and then some. With elegantly crafted words and a unique spin on the famous legend, Rourke has rooted out her spot in history among the great retellings with this incredible series. It's definitely not to be missed! It should come as absolutely no surprise that I am granting Crane a near-perfect 5-star review. I am fully confident than any reader who takes a chance on this series will not be disappointed. I highly recommend this read to lovers of retellings, fantasy, the mature-YA/New Adult genre (more for language than anything else), and who like a little fright in their reads. A perfect read for the Halloween season, don't miss it, add it to your TBR today!


Alright readers, that's all I have for you this evening on the topic if Crane by Stacey Rourke. As you can clearly see, I loved each and every second of this incredible novel. Don't hesitate to grab your copy today, it's on sale for only $0.99! Check it out now! Also be sure to head over and give the amazing author, Stacey Rourke a high-five. She's a fantastic author and lady who is a whole lot of fun! 

Thanks for stopping by. Until next time, Happy Reading!


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