Review: Awakening (The Dark Rituals Book 1) by Catrina Burgess | Author Stacey Brutger Skip to main content

Review: Awakening (The Dark Rituals Book 1) by Catrina Burgess

The cover looked so bad-ass that I had to read the blurb. Afterward, I was captured. I needed to read this book.


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Title: Awakening (The Dark Rituals Book 1)

Author: Catrina Burgess

Genre: Young Adult Urban Fantasy

Publisher: Full Fathom Five Digital via NetGalley

Release date: October 2015

Pages: 280



stars lazyload 35



Seventeen-year-old Colina was born a healer. But after a horrific event forces her to leave her clan, she becomes desperate to learn the dark magic of the death dealers, mages who draw their power from the spirits of the dead. Colina was taught to fear and hate death dealers, but becoming one of them is the only way for her to get the revenge she seeks—and the only way for her to survive.


Colina asks a young death dealer named Luke to help her, but he’s reluctant to train her in the Death Arts. Little does she know convincing him to teach her will be the easiest part of her journey. To become a death dealer, Colina will need to undergo three dark rituals, each more terrifying than the last. At the same time, she’ll have to deal with her growing feelings for her mentor. Too bad the first ritual involves him strangling her to death.


As Colina undergoes the trials, she discovers an untapped darkness within herself. If she survives the horrific rituals and gains dark power, what will she become?




Colina's life was destroyed in one fateful night and she loses everything, barely escaping with her life. Now, if she wants to survive, she must put her peaceful existence as a healer behind her and learn the dark arts of becoming a death dealer. The instant she meets Luke, she's conflicted—he's dark and moody and dangerous, everything her family warned her to avoid—so why can't she get him out of her mind? As they struggle to stay one step ahead of the killers hunting them, she must pass three dark rituals or lose the one last person she's come to care about…Luke.


The world building in this novel was fantastic. It's unique and gritty and fascinating. Unfortunately, I didn't like Colina as much as I would've wished. She was just too wishy-washy and full of tears for me to relate to her. Luke on the other hand captured me from the first page. I loved his need to do the right thing no matter what despite being a death dealer, not to mention his hotness. Unfortunately, I don't think Colina was strong enough to match Luke. Not that all things were bad about Colina. I loved getting to know about her growing abilities. My disappointment stemmed that she wasn't the least bit kick-ass. *bummer* It could've really made it a top-rate book. The ending didn't go the way I would've wished. I won't say that I was disappointed, but I had hoped for more of a happy ending. Though Colina wasn't my favorite person, the world was fascinating enough for me to want to read further. I'm hoping she'll continue to grow into a stronger character in the following books.


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