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Posted September 15, 2013
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publisher: Starry Sky Publishing
Best for: 17+
Check it out: Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Good Reads
I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Good Reads Summary:
Forever is worth the fight.
Maryah erased all memory of her past lives, but she couldn’t erase her soul mate Nathan, or his undying love. Now, Maryah and Nathan have a second chance at a future together, but first Maryah must remember the person she used to be and embrace her supernatural gifts—more than one kindrily member’s life depends on it.
Maryah’s power is Harmony’s best hope of finding her kidnapped soul mate, Gregory. But Harmony isn’t big on asking anyone for help, and she’s tired of waiting, so she’s taking matters into her own hands. Heaven help anyone who stands in her way.
I liked Grasping at Eternity. I thought it was interesting, fun, romantic…you can read that review HERE. Pretty much everything that I maybe didn’t like in the first book was fixed or taken care of in the second. In Taking Back Forever, the characters are more fleshed out, the stakes are higher, the pace is faster, and the romance is steamier.
A LOT steamier.
Nathan transformed from a slightly whiny and glum yet adorable gentleman in Grasping at Eternity to an incredibly sexy, awesome, wonderful, dynamic character in Taking Back Forever. He should be on everyone’s favorite book boyfriend list. Seriously. I like that Hooper highlights his imperfections, even while showing how wonderful he is.
“Delaying gratification is one of the most rewarding human pleasures. In almost all cases, the anticipation of an enjoyable experience is as pleasurable as the experience itself.”
Oh Nathaniel Luna. You know just what to say to a girl.
You see his struggle with how to deal with Maryah’s situation and how to handle the situation with Dedrick and Gregory. You also get a much clearer picture of the rest of the Kindrily. Krista and Carson become much more important characters, and I really liked that some of the story was told from Harmony’s point of view. Because the conflict was about Gregory (her soul mate), it made sense to see that story through her eyes. And since most of the Maryah’s and Nathan’s scenes were focused on “sensperiencing” (I’ll let you make your own assumptions about that word), the place you saw the most plot development-as far as Gregory’s story line- was through Harmony’s point of view.
I am SO excited about Fighting for Infinity, the next book in The Kindrily series. Hooper really raised the bar with Taking Back Forever. With this sequel, Hooper took her series from entertaining to awesome, so I have high hopes and expectations for the next installment!
Posted September 6, 2013
I go back and forth between 3.5 and 4 stars.
Yo! Put your big girl and big boy panties on because it might be a bit spoiler-ish if you have yet to read Book One, Grasping at Eternity.
I literally dove into book two as soon as I took a breather that lasted long enough to switch books. I really loved Grasping at Eternity. It kick started a love in me that I don’t think I’ll ever let go.
There are no recaps, folks! This book is not one of those. I suggest you read Taking Back Forever right after reading/re-reading Grasping at Eternity. So! We jump right back into this wonderful world with all the excitement in the world ready to find out what happened next.
It turns out that Maryah is part of a Kindrily who has been together for hundreds of years. A Kindrily is a group of people who care for one another like family but are not blood related. In this series it’s a bit more complicated than that but you have to read it for more info. Maryah used to be Mary. Mary and company were all souls that chose to be reincarnated with their memories intact. That is, until Mary didn’t and instead chose to erase her memories of her previous lives. Essentially, this is what this series is about so far, trying to recover Maryah’s memories and figure out why she chose to erase. My theory is that she had faith in herself to remember but by erasing allowed her Kindrily time to be safe for a while because there is a very evil guy out there. I’m not too clear as of yet what this guy wants to do but I’m patient enough to wait for it. Again, that’s my theory.
Cover- Let’s be very real right now. This series has the best covers. Love them!
Backstory/Characters/POV- You really get a sense of who everyone is and why, what their role in the Kindrily is and how much they truly care for one another. Hooper has managed to create very believable relationships and ties between all of the members of the Kindrily which I find is hard for some authors. I find that as readers we have to take some relationships for face value but not here. This was achieved nicely from start to finish. The alternating POV’s between Maryah and Harmony were necessary I think. You definitely get a better understanding of where Harmony is coming from. I still don’t like her, though. I get her to a point but there was something she told Maryah about the past that was hurtful and made me suspicious of her if anything.
Romance- The romance in this book is incredibly sexy and beautiful. There is no doubt in my mind that Nathan and Maryah are soul mates. I have to admit that I don’t doubt that any of the peeps in this book are soul mates. Again, the connections are solid.
Subtle messages- There are beautiful messages within this book about true love, trusting love, healthy love, patient love, unconditional love, about love that moves mountains and about the love that gives you strength to let go.
Ending- You get to pick alternate endings, y’all! I personally like and dislike cliffhangers. I think it depends on the kind and I really won’t know until I read it. Weird? I accept that. At any rate I was a few pages into the cliffhanger part of the ending when my copy expired. I’m ok with not knowing what the cliffhanger was.
Bonus Like: One of my Goodreads Friends had mentioned something about a snow globe in her comments/review of book one and the author actually included it in this book. It’s the little things, folks! You’ll need to read the book to know what I’m talking about.
I Didn’t Like So Much:
There is no doubt that the most interesting character in the series is Maryah. It’s not because the others are not, it’s because she is our reason for even beginning this journey. We want to know what the heck happened two decades ago. I’m freaking dying to see what Maryah can do if she ever retrieves all of Mary’s memories! We catch glimpses of Mary shining through and find out more about Mary’s role in the Kindrily. She’s a catalyst for many events and I want to know more! These were all exciting moments for me. Yet, I felt these moments came far and in between. I was a bit spoiled with the last book where something was happening at all moments.
A momentum was created with GAE and it was lost a bit in TBF.
Overall, I am still a fan. I literally can’t stop thinking about this series because it’s truly that unique and that magical for me. I can’t wait to introduce this series to my kiddies.
Thank you very much Netgalley, Starry Sky Publishing and the very nice and talented Karen Amanda Hooper for providing an arc for review.
Posted August 25, 2013
Posted August 25, 2013
Posted July 21, 2013
WHAT AN INCREDIBLE READ
This was beyond my expectations.
I hurt with Nathaniel, and loved with him an I was confused along with Maryah. And I hoped and I was hopeless. This was a whirlwind of emotions and I am so glad I had the pleasure of experiencing it.
The incremental growth of Maryah was so subtly made that nothing felt forced.
Nathaniel's POV was a wonderful addition to the storytelling because it gave an insight into his thoughts and feelings and made the book more real. To have to watch the love of your lives as she doesn't remember anything it has to be excruciating and unbearable. I wouldn't want to be in his shoes.
The thing that effected me the most about the couple is that neither know why she did it but it has to do with that evil mastermind Dedrick, and what he told her before she died. I hope this question is answered in the second book because I'm going nuts over it.
Posted June 16, 2013
I love The Kindrily series. I can't wait for the next book.
I love Maryah and Nathan as a couple. Maryah erased all her past lives and now she's trying different things with the help of her Kindrily to try to recover her memory and find out why she erased.
Nathan and Maryah are really sweet and cute together. It's beautiful how Nathaniel loves Maryah and would do anything for her. She's his twin flame. Maryah feels guilty for everything has happened and she's determined to remember and find a way to right things.
Kindrily aren't blood family but they are family because they love each other and all try to protect one another. Blood isn't what makes family, it's the closeness, love and affection they have for one another.
I loved this book and can't wait for the next book. I hope people give Karen Amanda Hooper's books a chance. She's a great writer. The writing flows together and the description is great. I highly recommend this book.
Posted June 9, 2013
I Also Recommend:
A review copy was provided for an honest review. It pleases me to say that Taking Back Forever was worth waiting for. Hooper yet again writes with sophistication and aptitude. Maryah's story continues on its engrossing path of trying to figure out why she erased. Diving right in it felt like I've never left the world where Kindrily's exist and soul mates reincarnate together. This series pulls you in swiftly and engages you from page one. I thought reading Grasping at Eternity was such pleasure until I picked up the sequel and was just as captivated all over again. Every beloved character from the previous book is back with their individually distinctive personalities. Some make more of an appearance than others but that barely registers when you're immersed in the characters that feel so near and dear to the readers heart. Some of my favorites became a bigger part of the story such as Harmony, Carson, Krista, and Dakota which was cool.
Having finally remembered a glimmer of her past life with Nathan Maryah is determined to recall it all. However her mind has other ideas such as randomly conjuring up strange premonitions. Meanwhile Harmony is done waiting around for Maryah to relearn her gift of astral projection and she knows it's now or never to take action to get her soul mate Gregory back. But when Harmony finally learns the truth of what happened to her beloved she's willing to do whatever it takes to locate him even if it means going against her Kindrily. As Maryah tries to regain her memories she knows that with each passing day the Nefariouns are preparing for something big and nefarious and that she has to be ready.
Taking Back Forever is told from alternating perspectives between Maryah and Harmony. Out of all the Kindrily members Harmony is a bit of a rebellious chick who doesn't play by anyone's rules but her own which evidently comes to bite her on the a** more often than not. Her personality is at times a little too full of attitude but it was very interesting to understand her thoughts and view her take on Maryah's situation. The story takes its time to unfold because it focuses on the characters more and their emotional struggles. I really felt for Maryah whose constantly trying to live up to the version of herself that she once was--the version that she can't remember. It's both a sad and heartbreakingly beautiful story of a reincarnated soul who chose to forget all her previous lives including her soul mate to escape something far worse than death. Nathan is one of the most considerate and patient guys in dealing with his loss and gain of a soul he's loved for hundreds of years. Maryah struggles with who she is and who she knows herself to be and it's difficult for everyone. I love that even though her and Nathan are soul mates that they're getting to know each other at a proper speed and taking their time to move forward in their relationship. I think most YA novels nowadays have the love interests fall for each other so fast their is never any growth or development so it always feels redundant and stale. Taking Back Forever moves in the opposite direction and actually builds up the tension, takes slow but necessary steps in dealing with the romance and it feels more believable to how reality is. I enjoyed each and every character and I'm excited to see their entwining stories in the future. More than a few times I forgot this was a young adult novel because some scenes are borderline adult. The first book had a young-adult feel but this one felt like a new adult read so I'd recommend it for 16 years or older for mature content.
As expected Taking Back Forever is just as fantastic as Grasping at Eternity was. Although their isn't a whole lot of action the character's conflicts really propel the story forward so it never feels like it's losing momentum or amusement. I think what I was most excited to get from this sequel was answers from all the questions brought up in the first novel but unfortunately few were offered. While I was a little let down it's hard to be mad when a story is so consuming that by the end your just left wanting more. Which brings us to how badly I want to read the third book in the series. For those new to these books and are deciding whether or not it's worth reading my answer to you is heck yes it's an incredibly refreshing story with top-notch writing all the way through with wonderful deliverance and potential to successfully continue that way. Be sure to read Grasping at Eternity before picking this one up and you surely won't regret it! All in all Taking Back Forever is a remarkable continuation of a unique young-adult story with a supernatural twist.
Posted June 9, 2013
I received this book from Starry Sky Publishing through NetGalley for an honest review.
I loved Taking Back Forever! It was a great follow up to Grasping at Eternity, and maybe even better. The romance stepped up a level, there was some surprising action, and Nathaniel was to die for. Previously I thought he didn't try hard enough to win Maryah, but in this he stepped up his game and was amazing and swoon worthy. Now if we could just have a wedding.
This is told from Maryah and Harmony's point of views. Maryah was frustrating at times with what I felt was not trying hard enough or getting to distracted, but who could blame her when Nathan was such a distraction. My favorite parts had to do with a transversing catastrophe, and a table covered with chocolate.
Harmony I didn't like so much. About 80% of the story I thought she was very selfish and on my nerves. But the last 20% she might have proved herself worthy of liking. I will have to see what happens in the next book to tell.
This was a great sequel with action, plenty of tense romance, and some big reveals about past lives. Recommend to mature YA lovers and adults.
Posted June 7, 2013
I was counting down the days until this book came and when I got an ARC ( Thanks for that by the way) I actually did a little happy dance around my house before jumping into this book. The book did not leave my hands until I read the very last page.
While Grasping at Eternity was an amazing, fantastic, scream your head off good novel, in my opinion it doesn't hold a candle to Taking Back Forever. There was so much more action in this book, so much romance that makes your toes curl and things get revealed that will make your jaw drop. We have Harmony narrating one perspective while looking for her soul mate and Maryah narrates her own perspective as she tries to gain her memories back. This was just perfect.
Maryah, so you know how in the last book literally every single person who read this book just wanted to give the girl a good shake? Yeah, that is so not the Maryah in this book. She really steps it up, embraced her kindrily and works towards getting her memories back. She becomes an amazing heroine, not a confused girl. I was so proud of her I wanted to give her a hug.
Nathaniel...ASDFGHJKL... yep I had to use that because I can't think of a word that can describe how he makes me feel. He was perfectly perfect as always. He was such a gentleman ( although he does get a little mischievous with his words towards Maryah here, not that I'm complaining ;) Also his love for Maryah was so pure and deep. Honestly, I could probably rant on and on and on about Nathaniel but here is what you really need to know. He is the best boyfriend ever and if I didn't like Maryah so much the girl would have some competition.
The ending. You get a choice people!!!! Heaven bless Karen Hooper. If I didn't have a choice to read the ending or wait until Fighting for Infinity I might have just lost it. So I chose to not read it, but you guys can do whatever floats your boats, just keep any information away from me.
Overall, this book was amazing. The soul-mate aspect was carried out perfectly and why are you still reading my review? Go shoo buy this novel right now.
Posted June 7, 2013
A series that has evolved and began to captivate me a lot!
I was really looking forward to read the sequel of "Grasping at Eternity", to know how Maryah and Nathan would evolve. I have not been disappointed by the main and secondary characters. I was as well surprised by the intensity of the emotions related to Maryah memories and the ones display for the search for Gregory.
The author has managed to make Maryah and Nathan more open with each other so their love story is poignant and sweet. But Harmany's fragility and obstination was well pictured also.
All the characters are engaging and charming.
Nathan loses his taciturn behavior and becomes much more playful and sensual with his ¿¿soulmate. He even helps her to find connections with her powers by suggesting more pronounced intimate scenes.
Maryah, whom I blamed for being a little too smooth, takes the bull by the horns. If she does not yet have access to all of her gifts, she sees the potential of her powers.
Based on the new evidences provided by the author, it is probably also a tragedy that led her to erase her memories... Her recovery may be less pleasing than expected by all members of her Kindrily...
Less action-oriented, even if there are still some good combats scenes, this volume focuses more on feelings and family ties. It's really like living among the X-Men and see their daily routine. This is very valuable and enjoyable.
All points that had bothered me in the first volume were erased and this sequel is much more accomplished. Besides, I think the next volume will be more darker and with a lot more fights.
A series that has evolved and began to captivate me a lot!
Posted June 1, 2013
Why You Should Buy It
Book Two in the Kindrily series packs in just as much mystery, action, and romance as the first. Things heat up for the Kindrily family and new characters come to the forefront to tell more of the story. This book is just as magical, if not more, than Grasping at Eternity and will leave the reader breathless and wanting more!
*I received this from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, courtesy of NetGalley*
I gotta say that I was looking forward to this book, but it still managed to blow my expectations out of the water. The book starts off just about where book 1 ended and the family is trying to help Maryah remember her memories. The process she goes through to remember her past is so interesting. And the fact that it was so related to her connection with Nathan — I kept getting swept up in the beautiful romance of it.
The premise of this story is still the biggest draw for me — a group of people who can choose not to reset their souls before returning to earth, thus remembering all their past lives. I was so fascinated by the back story of this book, and the Kindrily processes & powers. Everything wasn’t glossy and pretty — we really start to see what it means to have all that knowledge in your head. At first you think, how amazing would it be to have all that past, but Hooper shows the grief and embarrassment that can come with the joy and bliss of knowing the past. Just think — you have complete recall of every mistake and embarrassing action you took in not one life, but ALL your lives. Not exactly pretty, if you know what I mean.
I loved that the book shifted focus from just Maryah to the other characters. The first book had SO many characters in the background, and this one brought more of those characters to the forefront. I also liked how we got to learn so much more back story of these people and who they were – flaws and all. Harmony was such a dynamic character — book one left her so one-dimensional for the right reasons. But in book two we begin to peel back the gruff exterior and see what an amazing person she is.
There is genuine pain, happiness, sorrow, and grief in the pages of this book — Hooper really knows how to bring a character to life. Readers will love getting to know Harmony, Maryah, and all the other Kindrily. And my favorite part of the entire book had to be the ending. Hooper let the story end in the most creative way — it alone made the book. This series has quickly become one of my favorites.
Four point five out of Five Stars
Posted June 1, 2013
This is a phenomenally well written novel that draws you in right from the get go. Hooper is a master storyteller who combines subtlety with intricate descriptions to captivate her audience with a story that takes the supernatural to a whole new level. There are also some hilariously, awesomely ridiculous moment pop up that make you laugh out loud.
Taking Back Forever is a much more personal novel the first book in the series. You get right inside the lives of the characters. As a reader, you’re no longer a bystander. Hooper continues to develop the characters that we met in the first novel. You get to know more about them individually and their relationships with one another. She also gives us deeper insight into their powers and what they can do.
This novel is the perfect escape from reality. It is a love story (and just plain awesomely unique story) that will stand the test of time right alongside many of the classics.
Please note that I received this novel free of charge from the author in exchange for an honest review
Posted May 31, 2013
I really enjoy reading Taking back forever. On taking back forever you get the opportunity to read from Maryah and Harmony point of view, which I really enjoyed, both point of view blend perfectly no confusing parts between Characters. Every detail is well described I felt like I was in the book at all time, I read it in one day I didn't want to put it down. The book picks up right where "grasping at eternity" left off, that's right no rereading parts from the previous book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 30, 2013
This ARC was given to me in exchange for an honest review and in no way influenced my decision as I have been a fan since
“Grasping At Eternity.” The author’s thoughtfulness in giving us a Character Key at the beginning is a great help. I did re-read the last few
chapters of the first book in the series but if you didn’t it does refresh your memory. We pick up right where we left off in the first book,
Maryah having been rescued from River who is now in jail and Maryah is trying to master her astral traveling and regain her erased
memories. I loved the idea of Carson’s snow globe and I have a few people in mind that I would like their images copied for just that
purpose. The search is on to find Gregory before it is too late and Harmony is pulling out all the stops to find him, whatever the cost
much to the ire of the other Kindrily members. Harmony did get on my nerves in this book as she is a bit abrasive at best. Her taunting
of Maryah in hope of shocking her back to her old self made me want to shake some sense into her. I found this book to be more
emotionally haunting than the last as it delves into the profound effect that Maryah’s erasing had on not just Nathan but the rest of the
Kindrily. I have to wonder what happened to cause her to erase as she was obviously the cornerstone that held them all together so it
must have been something so epic that she felt she had no other choice. An emotional rollercoaster ride delving into feelings of
sadness, love, guilt and betrayal, grief and even redemption, an awareness that family is all that counts and yet evil forces are conspiring
We are still no closer to the reason why she erased which is frustrating but I guess some secrets need to be revealed in their own time.
Nathan was amazing and his devotion to Maryah reminded me of another couple who throughout several lifetimes fought to find their
way back to each other yet fate always seemed to have other plans for them and their HEA is put on the back burner. Their rediscovering
of each other, having a first date again seemed bittersweet and reminded me of those initial butterflies you get before a first kiss, a first
date and so on.
What an ending OMG! I liked the idea of having a choice at the end to either stay with the muted HEA or read on and be perched on the
edge of a precipice once again waiting for the answers. I of course, could not wait and had to keep reading. I wish I had Gregory’s gift
of reading minds because I would love to be able to read Karen’s mind and see what she has in store for us in the next book, patience
is not one of my virtues after all. I would recommend this series and I found it hard to put down, hence I finished it in a day.
Posted May 30, 2013
Ooooh how I've missed these characters! Faith, Harmony, Krista, Carson, Maryah, Nathan,... I've been waiting for so long to know how your story would go on! And know I know, and I want to know what happens next!
The writing was as good as it was in the first book, maybe even better. Karen Hooper is one of those really talented writers who can hook me to a book and let me stay up late because I just can't stop reading. I really love her and I love this series. It's so awesome! In this book we get to know a little more and we get to know new characters. There's action, romance, friendship, drama,... It's all there. And I still want to know more. Why did Maryah erase? That's the main question. Some of the questions are answered in this book, but most of aren't, which is good, because it makes me, as a reader, curious for more.
What's also awesome, is that you can choose in this book! You want a cliffhanger? Or rather not? You can choose in this book! (Just read it and you'll understand.) I do recommend reading the first book before this one, because it starts right where the last one left off and you won't understand a thing in this book. There's no recap here. (So more time for the story to get on! Yay!) But since these books are awesome, it won't be time wasted.
I know this review is not very long, but I can't say much else without spoiling the whole thing. So I'll leave it at this, but I do have one more question that has been burning in my mind since I read the first book... Where can I get my own Nathan???
Posted July 23, 2013
No text was provided for this review.