Friday, January 29, 2016

Heartless (Heartless Series #1) by Kelly Martin Review

Hey readers, Ethan here again this afternoon with yet another review for you guys. I'm not often one to throw words like this around, but I have to say this is by far one of the best reads I have read in a very, very long time. I am so excited to share these thoughts with you all. What am I raving about today? Heartless, the first novel in an incredible new series from author Kelly Martin. Before we get to my thoughts, here's a bit about the novel and our author:

Some things can't be saved.

What would you do if your guardian angel wasn't sent to protect you from the world but to protect the world from you?

For thirteen years, Gracen Sullivan dreamed about a red-eyed demon named Hart Blackwell who tortured her every night. Her mother freaked when she found out about her daughter's "hallucinations" and forced Gracen to go to the doctor, who prescribed some very powerful medication which kept Hart out of her head for five years.

A week ago, Hart came back and brought a friend.

But something has changed, and Gracen is seeing Hart when she's awake too. And the other "friends" in her dreams? They have been found dead.
The police want to talk to her.
Her boyfriend has become distant.
Her dreams are becoming more and more intense.
Hell wants her.
Heaven has to stop her.
When push comes shoving, can Gracen fight the evil eating away inside her or will she be forced to embrace it and destroy the world?


Kelly Martin

Kelly Martin is the bestselling author of contemporary, historical, and YA romance. She has been married for over ten years and has three rowdy, angelic daughters. When Kelly isn't writing, she loves watching horror gamers on YouTube, even though she is a huge wimp, and drinking white chocolate mochas.

My Thoughts:

"People certainly do some terrible things in the name of righteousness. When there's only one righteous person."

I'm going to start this out with a confession. I had this book on my TBR but had absolutely no idea what it was about. Didn't know the genre, didn't know the synopsis, and hadn't ever read anything previously by Martin. When I received the review request in my inbox, I was in the trenches of a novel that really wasn't speaking to me and this sounded like a breath of fresh air. Little did I know that this newfound surprise in my inbox was going to turn out to be one of the most hard-hitting and inspirational stories I've devoured in months. Wow.

When it comes to the plot, I'll be honest, I had no idea where Martin was going for the longest of times. With some incredible plot twists and some truly creative mind-benders, Martin had me guessing up until the very end. A psychological thriller if I've ever seen one. There were a few twists that I have to admit I did see coming, but for the most part, my jaw dropped with each revelation. It was astounding. Heartless is extremely fast-paced and definitely not for the weak of heart. While definitely not a gruesome horror tale, the psychological aspects of the novel were absolutely horrific at times. I definitely had to put the story down more than once to gather my thoughts. That being said, I will say that this novel is definitely best suited for New Adult and older audiences. I'm not sure I'd recommend this read to anyone who wasn't old enough to understand the themes Martin explores in Heartless

Never having read a Martin novel previously, I didn't know what to expect in terms of character development. Thankfully I was not disappointed. Now here is where I'll say my one and only negative thing about Heartless: I really would have appreciated some more adult content. For such an incredibly deep novel, the language was definitely family friendly and barely pushing PG. It did take me out of the story on more than one occasion where some much stronger expletives were most definitely in order. I was okay with the adult situations and themes, but I would have appreciated a bit more language that was more true to the new adult lifestyle. In terms of character development, I believe Martin excelled greatly. Especially with our main character, Gracen. Seeing as some of the biggest reveals in the novel take place within Gracen's psyche, a strong character was absolutely necessary. Not only did Martin have to know her character from the outside, she had to explore every facet, every crevice of Gracen's inner mind to really craft the beautiful character she did. It's a true testament to the talent of an author to write characters such as this. The remaining characters were all written great as well, but to avoid potential spoilers I'll stray away from commenting at this time.  

One thing I really didn't expect out of this novel was the deep religious roots it shared at times. I've red several novels as of late with religious undertones, but this one is probably the one who has done it the best. Martin has delivered an incredible tale full of spirit without drowning her readers in scripture or history. She took her own unique twist on the scriptural tale and crafted a story that readers of all faiths and walks of life can enjoy.

Oh boy. This is probably where I have the most to say but I'll try to condense it here. Martin really touches home with some incredibly hard hitting themes in Heartless. There are so many, and I'll tell you I highlighted over twenty passages in this one novel that I'll carry with me for many books to come. It's an extremely deep read that really resonated with me for some many reasons. If you can read this novel without catching all the feels, you've done something wrong. With reflections on topics such as: faith, family, love, forgiveness, acceptance, fate, destiny, and so many more, Martin opened the floodgates of emotion and really let them roar. It was a beautiful adventure in reading. 

In terms of setting, Martin again, hit the nail right on the head. In true New Adult fashion, we're situated at college, complete with the allure, excitement, stress, and ambiance of campus life and living. The first apartment, the libraries, Martin really did an incredible job with keeping her story tied to the new adult setting that one comes to look for in a novel of this genre. 

I'm going to make this a little personal for a moment. I often try to detach myself from the emotions of a novel. Only because I feel that if you relate too closely with the source material when reviewing, it's tends to cause some bias results. I'll be honest, I couldn't help but relate with everything Martin wrote in this incredible story. It's dark, far darker than I ever anticipated from an author with such a bubbly-upbeat personality. It's reflective on so many aspects of my life and I loved every second. It was such a cathartic read for me that I desperately needed. Words are so useful in dispelling the darkness and Martin and this series do an incredible job. I can't say many stories have touched me the way Heartless has. 

As you guys can clearly see, I have a whole lot of thoughts on this novel. Honestly it is one-of-a-kind and truly a unique novel that will leave your mind blown and begging for more. As previously stated, this is my first read from Martin and I can say with surety that I'll be devouring her entire backlog soon. I can not get enough of this! It should come as absolutely no surprise that I am granting Heartlessby Kelly Martin a near-perfect 5-star review. I seriously couldn't rave any more if I tried. I can absolutely tell you that I'll be closely following this series until the very end.  A truly unique read, Martin ignites a flame with her elegant words, captivating settings, and enough psychological insight to keep even the most hesitant of readers satisfied. Don't miss your chance to add this one to your TBR today. 


Alright readers, that's all I have for you on the topic of Heartless by Kelly Martin. As you guys can clearly see, this book spoke to me in ways I haven't been spoken to in a very long time. I couldn't recommend this book any more highly if I tried. Do yourself a huge favor and grab your copy today! Huge shout out to Kelly for providing me with a review copy in exchange for an honest review. Until next time, Happy Reading!


1 comment:

  1. When you've been reading a long line of simply okay books for a while, it's always nice when a brilliant read whizzes in and carries you away! So glad you were able to love this one and enjoyed reading the story. I LOVE a good solid lot of plot twists and turns, and it seems like this one certainly brings that across.

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