Scarlett March lives to hunt the Fenristhe werewolves that took her eye when she was defending her sister Rosie from a brutal attack. Armed with a razor-sharp hatchet and blood-red cloak, Scarlett is an expert at luring and slaying the wolves. She's determined to protect other young girls from a grisly death, and her raging heart will not rest until every single wolf is dead.
Rosie March once felt her bond with her sister was unbreakable. Owing Scarlett her life, Rosie hunts ferociously alongside her. But even as more girls' bodies pile up in the city and the Fenris seem to be gaining power, Rosie dreams of a life beyond the wolves. She finds herself drawn to Silas, a young woodsman who is deadly with an ax and Scarlett's only friendbut does loving him mean betraying her sister and all that they've worked for?
About the Author
Jackson Pearce is the author of Sisters Red and As You Wish. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.
Read an Excerpt
By Pearce, Jackson
Little, Brown Books for Young ReadersCopyright © 2010 Pearce, Jackson
All right reserved.
A Fairy Tale, Seven Years Ago
Strangers never walk down this road, the sisters thought in unison as the man trudged toward them. Certainly not strangers in business suits—there was just no reason for them to be out here in the middle of nowhere. Yet here one was, clouds of dirt rising around his feet with each step before settling into the cuffs of his impeccably pressed slacks. The older sister raised an eyebrow and stepped up to the white fence, while the younger sister finished a cherry Popsicle already half melted from the afternoon sun.
The man nodded his head in greeting as he finally came to a stop in front of them. “Hello, little ones,” he said, voice smooth. The sunlight glinted off the man’s slick blond hair and created thin shadows on his face where wrinkles were just beginning to form.
“I’m eleven, ” the older sister answered boldly, lifting her chin high.
“My mistake! Young ladies, ” the man corrected with a chuckle.
The older sister twirled in response, pretending not to study him as her party dress bloomed like a red mushroom around her. As the man watched her, his smile faded. His eyes grew darker, his smile more forced, and he licked his lips in a way that made the older sister’s stomach tighten. She stopped midturn and grabbed her sister’s sticky hand, snatching away the Popsicle stick and gripping it tightly, like a weapon.
“Is your mother home?” the man asked, the pleasant expression sweeping over his face once again.
“Our mother doesn’t live here,” the little sister declared, kicking at a dandelion. “You have weird eyes,” she added, squinting in the sun to look at the stranger’s face. His irises were dark sienna, the red-brown shade of autumn leaves.
“Shh, Rosie!” the older sister scolded, backing away.
“Ah, it’s all right,” the man said, stepping forward. “The better to see your lovely faces with, my dears. Your father is home, then? Brother?”
The older sister shook her head, black curls scattering over her shoulders. “Our grandmother is here, though.”
“Would you fetch her for me?”
The older sister hesitated, sizing him up again. She finally gave a curt nod and turned toward the little cottage behind her. “Oma March! There’s a man here!”
“Oma March!” she yelled louder.
The door swung open, slamming into the rows of gerbera daisies planted just outside the cottage. Oma March stepped outside, her daisy-patterned apron dusted with flour from the cake she was making for a neighboring boy’s birthday party. Sounds from the television drifted through the yard, the Price Is Right theme intrusive against the songs of sparrows in nearby trees.
“Scarlett, love, what’s wrong?” she asked calmly, never one to be easily riled.
Scarlett yanked Rosie toward the house. “There’s a man—a stranger—here,” she said, a note of warning in her voice as she brushed past her grandmother in the doorway. Rosie plopped down in front of the tiny television in the kitchen, but Scarlett lingered behind Oma March’s broad back, fingers still gripping the red Popsicle stick.
“Oh,” Oma March said as she regarded the stranger in surprise and tugged her apron off to reveal blue jeans underneath.
“Good afternoon, ma’am. I’m here as a representative of Hanau Citrus Grove. We’re trying to expand our business by selling citrus fruits door to door. Pay on delivery in three to six weeks. May I show you our catalogue?”
“Citrus? You mean like oranges?” Oma March asked in her German accent. She waved the man forward; he unlocked the white gate and strode toward her, hand outstretched.
“Yes, ma’am. Oranges, grapefruits, tangerines—” The man clasped Oma March’s palm in his, the sleeve of his navy suit jacket sliding back to reveal a curious black mark on his wrist.
Scarlett narrowed her green eyes to get a better look. It was an arrow that didn’t look so much like the tattoos the woodsman down the road had, but rather as though it was a true part of his skin.
Oma March followed Scarlett’s gaze, and suddenly her mouth became a firm line. The air stilled. The salesman’s sparkling eyes clouded with the same eerie expression they’d held when he’d regarded Scarlett outside.
“We don’t need any. Thank you, sir,” Oma March said, her voice suddenly hard.
No one moved at first, and it reminded Scarlett of the way dogs stand perfectly still before lunging in to fight. The salesman licked his lips again and stared at Oma March for a long moment before a slow, creeping smile pulled at the corners of his mouth.
“You’re sure?” the salesman said as Oma March shut the door.
As soon as the latch clicked, she wheeled around to face them, face blanched and eyes pale green disks. Scarlett backed up, afraid to see her grandmother wear such a foreign expression. The Popsicle stick clattered to the ground.
“Versteckt euch!” Oma March whispered hoarsely, pointing urgently toward her bedroom in the back of the cottage. Hide. Hide now.
Rosie abandoned the television, grabbing her sister’s hand nervously. Scarlett opened her mouth to ask Oma March to explain, but before she could find the words, a guttural, ragged howl erupted on the other side of the front door. Scarlett’s blood ran cold.
Oma March slammed a wooden beam across the door, then swung one of the bright yellow kitchen chairs over their heads and propped it up at an angle against the doorknob just before the knob began to turn furiously.
“Schatzi, my treasures, I won’t let him have you!” Oma March murmured under her breath, like a prayer. She dashed for the telephone and began dialing.
“Charlie? Charlie, one is here. Outside,” Oma March whispered frantically to Pa Reynolds, the woodsman who lived down the road. “Oh god, Charlie, hurry,” she pleaded. She slammed the receiver of the avocado-colored phone back down and threw her weight behind the couch to slide it in front of the door as well.
Another low, growling howl, followed by frantic scratching at the door.
Oma March snapped her head toward her granddaughters, eyes watery and pleading. “Scarlett! Don’t worry about me. Take Rosie and hide, ” she begged.
Scarlett nodded and squeezed Rosie’s hand, yanking her into Oma March’s room and slamming the door behind them. A tangle of legs and arms, they scrambled into the corner between the bed and bookshelf, breathing in the cool scent of laundry detergent and musky old philosophy books. They heard scraping from the other room as Oma March struggled with the couch. Another low, growling howl, then a sharp bang and a rainlike sound as splinters from the door poured down onto the floor.
Oma March shouted frantically in German, but her voice was cut off by loud thuds of furniture crashing to the ground, upholstery ripping, pans clattering. Scarlett bit her bottom lip so hard it began to bleed.
And then silence: eerie, thick silence that poured over the little cottage and drowned out the yammering of The Price Is Right contestants.
The sisters clung to each other, near mirror images with their chests pressed together until it seemed as if their hearts were one single organ beating between them. Rosie tangled her tiny fingers into Scarlett’s thick black hair and hid her face by her sister’s neck. Scarlett stroked Rosie’s head comfortingly with one hand, while the other groped under the bed for something—anything—that she could use to defend them. Something more than a Popsicle stick. Scarlett shuddered when a shadow appeared in the line of light under the door. Finally, her fingers found the smooth handle of a handheld mirror beneath the bed.
The shadow began to pace back and forth on the other side of the door, every few steps punctuated by a breathy growl and the scraping of talonlike nails on the hardwood floor. Scarlett watched, hypnotized, and when the pacing suddenly stopped, she gasped. The shadow pressed against the wooden door so hard that it looked as though the door might splinter under the weight. Rosie cried out, and Scarlett struck the mirror hard against the nightstand, cracking the glass. Trembling, Scarlett pried the largest shard from the mirror’s frame.
The aluminum knob turned so slowly that for a moment Scarlett thought perhaps it was just Oma March coming to check on them like she often did just before she turned in for the night. Scarlett squeezed her eyes shut. Just Oma March. I am not here, Rosie is not here, we are in bed. But as the door cracked, Scarlett forced her eyes wide, gritting her teeth when she saw Rosie’s chubby cheeks still shaking in fear. The door opened a little farther, a little farther, the stream of light hunting them down in the darkness. The single heart between them pounded as the door finally swung fully open and they were exposed to the light, helpless to hide from the form silhouetted in the door frame.
It was him, the salesman, but it was also… not. He still had shiny blond hair, but now it was speckled across his body like patches of disease. His eyes were enormous and hollow, his mouth twisted and stretched as if his face had been pulled apart at the corners, revealing rows of long, pointed fangs. His back arched as if it were broken, hunching his shoulders and turning his feet in. And his feet… the horrible claws were as long as fishing hooks and left deep gashes in the floorboards as he inched closer to the girls.
He ducked to fit under the door frame and, in one fluid transformation, lost the last few characteristics that had made him look even remotely like the blue-suited salesman. That had made him look remotely human. His nose became long and canine, his lips spread even farther. He lurched forward and planted his two hands—no, paws—onto the ground, thick, greasy hair clinging to his entire body. And the smell. A rotting, corpselike stench emanated from the thing—the wolf—making the sisters retch. He watched them hungrily, evil adoration in his eyes.
Scarlett swallowed hard, gripping the mirror piece so tightly that it cut her hand. She pushed away the impending tears, the energy in her legs screaming for her to run, and the sound of Bob Barker shouting about dinette sets as if nothing were wrong, as if she couldn’t see her grandmother’s form slumped on the ground just behind the monster.
She stared into the monster’s hard sienna eyes and it cocked its mangy head. Before Scarlett knew what she was doing, she shoved Rosie under the bed and leapt to her feet, wielding the shard of mirror like a knife. Scarlett took a step forward, then another, until she was so close to the monster that the rotting stench emanating from his throat choked her. The wolf opened his wide, long jaws, rows of teeth and bloodstained tongue stretching for her. A thought locked itself in Scarlett’s mind, and she repeated it over and over until it became a chant, a prayer: I am the only one left to fight, so now I must kill you.
HE'S FOLLOWING ME.
About time. I had to walk past the old train depot five times before this one caught the scent of my perfume on the wind. I feign obliviousness to the sound of his dull footsteps in the darkness behind me and tug my crimson cloak tighter around my shoulders. I give a fake shiver as a breeze whips through my glossy hair. That’s right… come along, now. Think about how badly you want to devour me. Think of how good my heart will taste.
I pause on a street corner, both to be certain that my stalker is still behind me and so I can appear confused and scared. There’s nothing like a lost teenage girl on the bad side of town to get their blood pumping. The street lamps make the wet pavement glittery, and I avoid the light as best I can. It would ruin the whole charade if he saw the bumpy, jagged line where my right eye should be. The eye patch covers some of the mark, but the scar is still obvious. Luckily, the wolves are usually too focused on the red cloak to care all that much.
I turn sharply and head down an alley. My stalker turns as well. This side of town reeks of stale beer from the restaurants that have become bars now that the sun is down, but I suspect the man following me can smell my perfume above the booze. If you can call him a man. They slowly lose their human souls when they become monsters. I walk faster—one of the first tricks I learned. Run from an animal, and it chases you.
My fingertips skim the worn handle of the hatchet hanging at my waist, hidden by the flutter of the red cloak. The cloak serves multiple purposes—the color of passion, sex, and lust is irresistible to wolves, and the fabric hides the instrument of their death. And perhaps most important, wearing it feels right, as if I’ve put on a uniform that turns me into more than a scarred-up orphan girl.
“Miss!” my stalker calls out just as I emerge from the alley’s opposite end.
I gasp and turn around, careful not to let the red hood slip off my head. “You scared me,” I say, clutching my heart—the only part of my body untouched by Fenris jaws. My hands are scarred, just like my face, but the marks are so small that I count on him overlooking them in his fit of hunger. It’s easy enough to make a wolf notice my hair, my long legs, my waist, but hiding the scars took practice.
“So sorry,” he says, stepping out of the alley. He looks normal. Nice, actually—mahogany-colored hair and a firm jaw speckled with facial hair, like a high school football star in his prime. He’s wearing a pale blue polo shirt and jeans. If I didn’t know any better, I’d easily believe he just stepped out of one of the bars. That’s all part of the illusion, of course; it’s hard to lure young girls to their doom if you look like a psychopath. You have to look kind, put together, clean-cut. Show them pretty hair and stylish clothes, and most girls won’t look close enough to see that your teeth point in a very canine way or recognize that it’s hunger your eyes are lit with.
He glances down the road. There are a few shady characters hanging out on the street corners several blocks away, small-town thug-wannabes smoking, shouting at one another. No good—he doesn’t want to kill me where people can see, and I don’t want to fight him where someone might intervene. The wolves and I both prefer to stalk our prey under the cover of darkness—if possible, anyhow. I’ll take killing a wolf in daylight over letting one escape alive any day.
He takes a step closer. He can’t be much older than I am, really—twenty-two, absolute tops, though they stop aging once they change, so it’s hard to tell exactly. Once they’ve transformed, they’re ageless—unless, of course, someone kills them. He smiles, white teeth dazzling in the night. A normal girl would be drawn to him. A normal girl would think about touching him, would think about kissing him, about wanting him. A normal, stupid, ignorant girl.
“A lovely girl like you shouldn’t be out so late, alone and all,” he says calmly, though I can hear the panting in his voice as his eyes run across the red cloak. I notice that the hair on his arms has started to grow; he’s too hungry to totally control his transformation for long. I’ll never kill a Fenris if he hasn’t transformed. It’s not worth the risk of killing a person, putting someone through the same agony that my sister and I went through. I’d be nothing more than a murderer, so even though I’ve never been wrong, I always wait.
I shuffle my feet with pretend nervousness. “I’m lost,” I lie. I meander across the street, swaying my hips. “I was supposed to meet a friend here…” Just a little farther, and the row of pawnshops on the cross street will hide us. He laughs, a deep, growl-like sound.
“Lost, huh?” he says, walking toward me. “Why don’t you let me show you the way back?” He extends a hand. I look down. There’s a black tattoo-like mark on his wrist, a flawless image of a coin. A member of the Coin pack, out this far? Odd. I take another step away from him. I’m hidden from the civilians’ view now, and if he comes just a tad closer, he’ll be as well.
“I… I’ll be okay,” I mutter. He grins. He thinks he’s scaring me, and he’s relishing it. It’s not enough to just slaughter and devour girls. They need to frighten them first. I turn my back to him and start to walk quickly, letting my cloak billow out in the wind, taunting him. Come along, follow me. Time to die.
“Hey, wait,” he calls out. His voice is dark now, almost guttural. He’s fighting the transformation, but his hunger is winning—I can feel it somehow. His bloodlust hangs in the air like a fog. He wants to tear me apart, to dig his teeth into my throat. I stop, allowing the hood to slip down and my curls to wave in the breeze. I hear him groan with disgusting delight as I grip the familiar grooves of the hatchet’s handle. Don’t turn around, not yet. He hasn’t changed, and if he sees the scars on my face, my cover will be blown. Can’t risk him running and getting away—he has to die. He deserves to die.
“All I’m saying is”—he chokes on the words as the mutation begins to overpower his vocal cords—“people might get the wrong idea, a pretty girl like you out alone on a corner like this.”
My lips curve into a grin as I draw the hatchet from my belt. There’s a swish as his clothes hit the ground, then the clicking sound of claws on pavement. “I’m not worried,” I answer, unable to suppress a sly grin. “I’m not that kind of girl.”
When I spin around, there’s no man behind me, only a monster. Some call them werewolves, but they’re so much more than wolves. This Fenris’s fur is dark and oily looking, fading to gray-mottled skin by his enormous feet. He growls and brings his long snout to the ground, tensing his jaw and clacking his yellowed teeth. The streetlight illuminates his enormous frame and casts a shadow that overtakes the ground at my feet. I raise an unimpressed eyebrow at him, and his eyes find the gleaming hatchet in my hand.
His powerful shoulders launch him through the air at me; he snarls, the sound like rocks being shredded. I whip around toward him, low to the pavement. He begins to sail over my head but twists back in midair. I snap the hatchet up at the last possible moment. The blade makes contact and skims his front leg, and then I spin the hatchet to the left and manage to slice into the top of his back leg before the Fenris even hits the ground. Blood showers me.
The Fenris howls and collapses onto the pavement behind me. Try again, wolf. Don’t run away yet. You can’t let them run, once you’ve started a fight. They’ll be starving from the expended energy, slaughter twice as many in half the time. It can end only one way: with the wolf’s death. This one isn’t a runner, though. He still wants to devour me.
Saliva drips from his lips, and his eyes narrow. The Fenris paces in front of me, shoulders rolling with every step. He curls his black lips back and bares his fangs.
The Fenris darts at me again. I sidestep and swipe at him—miss. He doubles around. No time to draw the hatchet back. I lift it like a shield in front of me and let my body relax. When the Fenris slams into me, I hit the pavement—hard—but he’s run his chest into the hatchet, the weight of his body driving it in. I brace my legs against his abdomen and kick up, sending the monster flailing away behind me. Back to my feet. I grimace as a wave of dizziness rushes over me, as blood runs down the back of my shoulders, scrapes from hitting the asphalt. Get it together, come on.
I blink. The wolf is gone. No, not gone—I can still smell him in the air. I hold my breath, ears straining.
Wait for it. He’s here. Wait for it—
The Fenris crashes into me with all the force of a bus. My right side, my blind side. His claws pop through the skin on my waist, sharp, stinging pain that makes my eye water and my vision blur. I hit the ground again and lose my grip on the hatchet. The wolf’s weight bears into me, his breathing heavy and labored. I don’t struggle—it makes them happy. Blood from his chest wound pools on my stomach, and as he presses his face closer to mine, I can see only one raging eye.
Wait for it. He’ll relax. He’ll make a mistake. You get only one shot to get them off you—make sure you take the right one. Flecks of his fur catch in my nose and mouth, and grime from his body sticks to my sweat. I could try to reach the hunting knife on my waist, but both of my hands are locked in place by his front feet. I choke as he lowers himself even farther against me, heavy on my lungs, gagging as he exhales almost directly into my throat.
Then a thick, dull sound echoes through the night, surprising enough to distract both me and the wolf. Footsteps? Before either the Fenris or I can react, a solid hit to its side throws the Fenris off my body, and I gasp for air as though I’m surfacing from water. Get up, get up, quick. I roll to my stomach. Out of the corner of my good eye, I see a man, shadowed by the night but with a familiar lanky gait. He turns his head from me to the Fenris, who prowls a few yards away.
“You’d think after all these years, you’d know to keep a Fenris from getting to your blind side,” the intruder says. I grin, standing up. The Fenris growls at us; I lean to one side as it leaps forward and swing my hunting knife into his front leg. The wolf manages to shred part of my cloak as he stumbles away.
“I could have gotten him. I was waiting for my moment,” I answer. The boy laughs, eyes sparkling gray-blue even in the darkness.
“Would that moment have come just after we carved ‘Scarlett March’ on your tombstone?” the boy snickers.
The Fenris rears back and snarls. It knows it’s too late to run. It’s kill us or be killed. I join the boy, grabbing my hatchet off the ground. He licks his lips nervously. He’s rusty at hunting, obviously. I wonder how long it’s been.
“You know,” I say, smirking, “if you aren’t up to all this, I can handle it for you. You know, if you aren’t man enough.”
He narrows his eyes, but a smile tugs at the corners of his thin lips. We turn toward the Fenris as the wolf lowers its shoulders to the ground, eyes focused and furious. The boy draws two knives from his belt. I flip my hatchet in my hand.
“He’s gonna come at you first,” the boy says.
“I know,” I answer. “You go to his—”
“I will,” he replies, grinning. I shake my head. Nothing’s changed. We don’t need words, not when we’re hunting together.
The wolf charges us just as we take the first few running steps toward him. The boy reaches it first. He leaps high over the Fenris’s arched back and sinks both knives into his sides. That should do the trick, but I won’t let him take the credit. I skid to a stop and release the hatchet toward the Fenris. It lassos through the air before sinking into his chest with a squelching thud.
The Fenris collapses to the ground, its eyes glimmering in a mix of hunger and hatred as I step toward it. It snaps at my legs once or twice uselessly. There’s nothing human about it now, nothing canine, only a dying creature both bestial and disgusting. Its rotting-garbage-meets-sour-milk scent makes me gag. I’ve lost track of how many Fenris I’ve hunted, but the smell gets to me every time.
“When did you get back? And where’s your ax?” I ask the boy without taking my eye off the Fenris. Best to wait until you know they’re dead.
“About an hour ago, and I didn’t exactly expect to be hunting straight off—hence, no ax. Figures I’d find you out here before I even get back to my house. You need some hobbies, you know?”
I shake my head as the Fenris takes a few final raspy breaths. Its tongue lolls out of its mouth, and with a final growl, it dies. The dead Fenris bursts into darkness, an explosion of nighttime. Shadows flit over walls, into the cars, between blades of grass like coal-colored fireworks scattering across the world. I look toward the boy.
“Good to see you, Silas.”
Silas grins and shakes the Fenris blood off his knives before sheathing them. “You too, Lett.”
“Good to see a real hunter in action again, you mean,” I quip.
He steps forward and hugs me. I tense—I like being hugged, but it doesn’t happen too often. Something about a girl that’s missing an eye turns people off to touching her, I guess. Silas has known me since before the scars, though. I give in and put my arms around him.
Silas releases me and frowns at the bloodstains on his jeans. “There are some parts of hunting that I really didn’t miss,” he grumbles. “Are you okay, by the way?” he asks, motioning to the wound on my waist.
“It’s nothing,” I say, waving it off. “Are you saying you didn’t hunt the entire time you were in San Francisco?” I run my hatchet along the hem of my cloak. The Fenris’s blood barely shows up on the crimson fabric.
“Forgive me for trying to spend some time with my uncle!”
“Yeah, yeah,” I sigh. It’s hard to understand how he can just not hunt for such long periods of time, but the subject has always been a losing battle for me. “So how is Uncle Jacob these days?”
Silas shrugs. “Okay. I mean, for a forty-year-old man who’s practically a hermit.”
“That’s not his fault, though,” I say as we meander back through the alley. “Your brothers and sisters still riled up about your father giving Jacob all the inheritance money?”
“Yep. Even angrier about him giving me the house here,” Silas mutters. Silas finished high school instead of taking a woodsman apprenticeship, something his brothers found fairly dishonorable and his triplet sisters found emasculating. Combine that with the fact that Pa Reynolds gave him and Jacob his worldly possessions before going senile… they can really hold a grudge, it seems.
“I’m sorry,” I offer. I try to imagine my life without my sister, but it’s impossible; if she were gone, my life would stop. I give Silas what I hope is a sympathetic smile. He nods in response.
At the end of the alley there’s a car without hubcaps or a front bumper, the driver’s-side door flung open. The back is piled high with duffel bags and fast-food cups.
“That thing made it to California?” I say, frowning.
“Not only that, but I managed to make it run off vegetable oil while I was there,” he answers.
“All the way to California and not a single Fenris…” I sigh.
Silas grins and wraps an arm around my shoulders. “Lett, really, you’ve got to get a hobby. Come on, I’ll give you a ride home.”
I climb into the passenger seat, knocking a few empty soda bottles to the floorboard. I have the window rolled down before Silas can even get to the driver’s side—maybe it’s because I don’t ride in them often, but cars make me claustrophobic. Silas slides in beside me and fiddles around with a few wires that stick out by the ignition, and the car grumbles to a start.
“What about here, though? I didn’t realize packs were starting to prowl around Ellison again,” Silas says.
I shrug. “It’s been kind of recent. That one had been here awhile, I think. He was Coin. No sign from Arrow or Bell,” I answer. What are packs like on the West Coast? As large as the ones in the South, as fierce? Is there anyone there to destroy them like I do here? How much more could I accomplish if I were in California instead of small-town Georgia? I can’t believe he didn’t hunt even once…
“Also, thanks for saying happy birthday,” Silas interrupts my thoughts.
“Oh, wow, Silas, I forgot. I’m sorry. So you’re old enough to drink finally?” I ask.
“It’s not as exciting as you’d think.” He grins. We sail past the edge of town and into the night. A few scattered farmhouses glow like stars on hills, but other than that, there’s nothing but the dim glow of Silas’s single working headlight. I double-check that there’s no blood on my hatchet or hunting knife, then wrap both up in my cloak. I flip down the sun visor and grimace. I lick my fingers and try to smooth my hair, which is shooting out as if I’ve been electrocuted.
“Well, looks like Ellison hasn’t changed much—hey, since when do you care about your hair?” Silas asks.
“Since now,” I answer quickly. I adjust my shirt and tuck the cloak and weapons under my seat as we turn down an unpaved road. Tall grasses line either side, and the shrieks of crickets and locusts become deafening through the open window. I wipe away the moisture on my forehead.
“Wait, are you… you’re trying to hide the fact that you were hunting!”
I sigh. “Look, I told Rosie that she could go hunting on her own for the first time, but that Fenris—”
“You stole a solo hunt from your sister?”
“No! I mean, yeah, but it’s a good thing I did. That wolf was harder than I predicted. I don’t know. She’s not ready and I had to go hunting or lose my mind…”
“Scarlett…” Silas begins in a serious tone. He started using “the tone” when we were kids to remind me that he’s older than I am. It annoys me just as much now as it did then, only now it’s less acceptable for me to push him into the mud for it. “She’s supposed to be your partner.”
“No, she’s supposed to be my sister. You were my partner, before you up and abandoned us—”
“Hey, I still am, I’ve just been away—actually, no, I’m not getting into this argument again. Why can’t Rosie be in on this partnership too?”
“Look, I’m not going to wait for my sister to finish grocery shopping while the Fenris slaughter people left and right,” I snap as we take the right fork in the road, toward Oma March’s house. It doesn’t matter how long she’s been dead; I’ll always consider it her cottage. The left fork goes to Silas’s house. The only other thing close to us is the back side of a massive cow pasture. “It’s our responsibility,” I add. “We know how to kill them. We know how to save people’s lives. We don’t take nights off or vacations to California for a year.”
“Ouch,” Silas says, but I can tell my words roll off him. It’s hard to get Silas riled up, unfortunately. “All I’m saying,” he continues, “is that you can’t keep Rosie locked up forever.”
I sigh in annoyance as the cottage appears in the distance like a lit oasis in the dark. “She’s just not ready,” I mutter. “And I don’t want her to end up like me.” Silas nods knowingly and traces his thumb over the scars on my arm as the smell of jasmine flowers wafts in through the air. We ride along in silence for a few moments.
Finally, Silas’s car growls up to the edge of the gravel drive. The cottage’s front door swings open, sending a long stripe of light through the yard.
“Wow,” Silas says softly as he kills the ignition. I follow his stare out the windshield—Rosie is standing in the kitchen doorway, arms folded and eyes sparkling in anger. “Rosie looks… different.”
“Yeah. ‘Different’ as in mad. ” I sigh, throwing the car door open. “Stay here for a second.”
Excerpted from Sisters Red by Pearce, Jackson Copyright © 2010 by Pearce, Jackson. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This book is cool and twisted! The story features two sisters, one brutally scarred and forever changed by a wolf attack, and the other burdened by responsibility to her sisters cause. Mix it all together with deadly wolves, action and a love story. I really enjoyed out and plan on checking out other books by this author.
Jackson Pearce has done an amazing job with this one! Set in Atlanta and its surrounding areas, the story of the March sisters is one of fantasy, intrigue, love, and a kick-a** big sister! There is just no other way to describe Scarlett. She carries the scars both physically and emotionally of the attack that she and her sister survived when she was younger and feels that it is her duty to protect others from the vicious werewolves that have done so much damage. Jackson has truly captured the essence of being a big sister in this novel with Scarlett. Being a big sister myself I can completely understand Scarlett's need to protect her sister and those around her forgetting her needs almost completely. Her sister Rosie, however, has other things planned and feels complete guilt because of those desires. Jackson's fresh writing style and use of various narrators completely captivates readers thorough out the novel. We hear from both Scarlett and Rosie throughout the novel which allows the readers to see both sides of the same story which adds layers to the already intriguing story. The action with the sisters, Silas, werewolves and "things with blades" (as someone said at the release party last night) was descriptive and made the reader feel as if they were part of the action. Overall, this is probably one of the best written books out there. I love that Jackson kept the werewolves as what they were created to be. EVIL CREATURES!! Many times authors get away from that (no names mentioned here) and the fact that she kept them true to form was refreshing. amongst other things!
From the start, this book grabbed my attention. I loved the action fighting parts. Scarlett really knows how to kick some real serious Fenris butt. The descriptions of the Fenris is realistic and I like how they're portrayed as vicious feral creatures who can't seem to control themselves (which is the way how it should be!). The plot itself was really good and it certain did keep the pages turning. The characters were good although I'd have to say Scarlett is my favorite. I liked her toughness. It's such a complete contrast to Rosie - and I have to admit I really didn't like Rosie (still don't) sure, Scarlett really did her best to protect her and that's probably why Rosie's got this air of vulnerability around her. (Although she can pull her own weight in a fight as well). However, there's just something about her I don't quite like. Maybe it's because she's just so sweet it gives you cavities reading about her. She gets a little better later in the book, but not enough to make me change my opinion. Another thing about her is her lovey dovey relationship makes you want to cringe. It's too sweet for my taste. I also thought this was a great twist to the Red Riding Hood fairy tale. It certainly adds a more darker twist to it and like mentioned previously, the description of the Fenris and their society is really well done, and I hope there's more to it than just this book because it feels like this isn't going to be last we've heard from these sisters. I most definitely recommend this. YA Readers will enjoy this, those with a like for urban fantasy or a twist on Fairy Tales will also appreciate this. It's a great read and you'll be done in no time.
I picked this book up because i needed a book to read but i didnt realize this book would be so amazing! I started this book and i could not put it down. I absolutely loved this book! It has romance, action, and everything kin the middle. You should definitely read this book.
Sisters Red is like Little Red Riding Hood with a twist. The fenris - aka the big bad wolves - hunt down little girls so they can eat them. Yes it's a bit gory and some girls die - but standing in between the fenris and the poor defenseless girls is Scarlett and Rosie March. And Silas. Scarlett seems to carry the weight of the world on her shoulders. She's all hunt, and no play. Which puts a bit of a gap between her and Rosie. Because (with some persuasion from Silas) Rosie does realize that she does want a life outside of hunting the fenris. But Rosie feels this sort of obligation towards her sister because Scarlett did save her life many years ago, and is covered in scars and is actually missing an eye. Sisters Red is filled with lots of action scenes in which Rosie or Scarlett lure the fenris away so that they can fight/kill them. Each character uses different weapons very effectively. Which I liked that despite Scarlett's toughness and ability to kick ass that since she was missing an eye it did effect how she fought. The romance between Silas and Rosie was wonderful and I enjoyed the scenes where Rosie and Silas were together - actually I enjoyed the entire book. Even that one little scene somewhere near the end where I thought I was going to burst into tears.
Here are just a few of the things I love about this book: Scarlett is so tough. She's deadly with a hatchet and harshly truthful and fiercely loyal and secretly proud of while being secretly self-hating because of her many battle scars. She feels overwhelmingly obligated to do the work that she does, and she's good at it. She's generally kick-ass. Rose is so conflicted. She wants Scarlett to trust her to hunt alone, but she also wants Scarlett to need and protect her. She wants to remain half of a pair, but she also wants to break away into a different life. She's got wicked aim with throwing knives, and she holds Scarlett together when no one else can. She's generally kick-ass. Silas is quite literally the boy next door. As such, he's managed to win the crushes of both Scarlett and Rose over the years. But he is first and foremost Scarlett's partner; they are a team and they act like one. He also manages to be first and foremost Rose's support. He pushes Scarlett to trust Rose on the hunt, and he pushes Rose to break away from hunting and live her own life. And he does all of this without being two-faced or playing one sister against the other. He totally gets that no matter how much Rose might swoon over him or how much Scarlett depends on him, he will never be able to compete with the relationship Scarlett and Rose have with each other. So he doesn't try. The twist that Pearce puts on werewolf mythology is great. They're still totally evil people-eaters (unlike some other werewolves you may be familiar with), but they're not the werewolves of B-rated horror films (or Harry Potter) either. How she weaves the girl in the red riding hood into this mythology made me giddy. She's created a werewolf that is, a lot of the time, victim to his own senses and sensations. In showing how Scarlett and Rose manipulate these monsters, she completely immerses the readers in a rich fantasy: the one that Scarlett and Rose (with help from Silas) nightly create. None of this compares to the twist Pearce has put on the ending of her own story. I thought I had it figured out about halfway through the book, then I lost it, then I figured it out again, but by then things were so complicated that I didn't know how Scarlett, Rose, and Silas were going to pull it off.Seriously guys, I loved this book. The opening hook worked like a charm, and by the end, I was reading with my heart in my throat. I was so invested in these characters. Highly recommended.
i enjoyed this book - lots of gore, action and descriptions of violence, but it's a modern retelling of Red Riding Hood where the girls are the fighters that take down the evil fenris (werewolves). Good strong female characters too.
In this modern day reshaping of the Little Red Riding Hood tale, Jackson Pearce brings us sisters Scarlett and Rosie who are survivors of a werewolf ¿ or ¿Fenris¿ as they¿re called in this story ¿ attack that killed their grandmother. The girls are raised by the woodsman who saved them, and along with Silas, the woodsman¿s youngest son, they train themselves to hunt the Fenris. Silas does it because it is his birthright, Scarlett does it because it is her life, and Rosie does it because she feels she owes her sister her life. Their differing levels of commitment combine to make for a more in-depth story than you expect from a YA paranormal adventure tale, and although there is some degree of predictability to the ending, that doesn¿t mean you won¿t enjoy reading the book all the way to the end.
Sisters Red is by far one of the most unique concepts out there. The fact that Jackson Pearce was able to remake the story of Red Riding Hood and turn it into a chilling young adult novel is an accomplishment in itself. I cannot begin to tell you just how much I loved this book. First of all, adding the twist of the two sisters to the story makes it much more interesting. I was able to see two completely different perspectives, I loved that each chapter alternated it left you wanting to read more and more about each one. It was great to see the budding romance between Rose and Silas from someone else¿s point of view. You don¿t usually get that in a novel. The idea of wolf hunters is pretty new in the paranormal world, it seems as though most paranormal novels focus on the paranormal characters more so than anything else. It was breath of fresh air to read Rose and Scarlett¿s story, two humans thrown into the midst of werewolf hunting because of a horrible incident. This was and will be one of my favorite books for Halloween. I was fearful throughout most of the novel and was also in constant suspense of what will happen next. I enjoyed how action packed Sisters Red is; the fight scenes where some of my favorite ones to read. You could imagine every hit and every move in complete detail. I really enjoy the way Jackson Pearce writes overall, her style is really detailed. Everything is so easy to fall into; you can¿t help but feel drawn in. COVER LOVE! This cover is one of my favorite paranormal covers yet. I love that the images blend into one but are three distinct images. I give Sisters Red 5 Lanterns. I highly recommend you read this intense retelling of Red Riding Hood, and look out for her next companion novel titled Sweetly a retelling of the Hansel and Gretel tale. I hope she continues to do this for the rest of her life. Seriously, these retelling are amazing.
I received this ARC as part of a traveling tour from We Love YA Tours. With a week turnaround time and NaNoWriMo I had to read in every snatch of time I got. The doctor's office-she asked "And now the most important question Is that book any good?" She thought it was by Gregory Maguire of Wicked fame. I live in Massachusetts. They live for Gregory Maguire. Wicked is a very big descriptive word up here. So I'll say this Sister Red was Wicked Good! This is the tale basically of Little Red Riding Hood, in a different version, when she's all grown up and they are sisters. I'm going to try not to give anything away. The summary tells you that the wolf eats Oma March and the woodsman takes the two orphaned girls in until their mother comes home to care for them. She had run away to the circus, but is motherly enough to come back and stay with the girls for a little while. At least until she can't stand to see Scarlett's scars anymore and then it's off to the circus again. But the woodsman looks after the girls, he has many children of his own. And he and Oma March had been good friends.Scarlett's scars are extensive and criss-cross her entire body. When the wolf killed Oma March, she broke a mirror and pushed her sister under the bed and she fought the wolf. He took her eye and left scars everywhere, except over her heart. This is significant because the girls, though two years apart in age, believe they share a heart. They believed when they were little that their heart broke in two because half of them wanted to be born first, Scarlett, and then Rosie braved the world later. As little girls they believed this but after the attack, the only time their hearts felt as one was when they were on the hunt for Fenris-the wolves that attacked and ate young girls.This story is basically about the deep love between two sisters, the responsibility Scarlett feels to hunt the Fenris and Rosie's need for something more. There is a lot of guilt on Rosie's part because her sister bears the scars of protecting her and the hunt and Rosie doesn't feel she can separate from her sister. But Silas, Scarlett's hunting partner lures her away from a life of hunting and tries to show her a life beyond just hunting. For Scarlett, anything but hunting is an act of betrayal. For Silas, he can hunt and still have a life.For Rosie ....it's a choice between the two people she loves.But another story going on is the hunt for the Potential, a human that has all the right things to be turned into a Fenris and the Fenris are on the prowl, first in the girls' small town and then when Scarlett, Rosie and Silas head to Atlanta where there are a lot of killings, they hear Fenris talking of the Potential. But they know so little of this Potential. What makes him what he is and their greatest resource, Silas' father, the woodsman, is in a nursing home with Alzheimer's.There is a lot of action in this novel mixed with a little bit of budding romance and lots of fighting and gore. Not the kind that turns your stomach, just descriptive enough. I knew who the Potential was pretty early but you may not guess. Pearce just left the hint way too soon for it not to be the person I thought it was no matter how far off she tried to lead. This was fast paced and a great take on the Little Red Riding Hood story. Each character had something to add, but Silas wasn't a fully developed character. However, this was after all Sisters Red and the two sisters were given every other chapter to narrate and let us see into their minds.I'd love to see Pearce do another fairy tale. I've just recently read Beastly, a take on Beauty and the Beast and the modern telling of the old versions make for really great reading. I love the grown up versions of Red Riding Hood. I definitely recommend this to anyone that loves fairy tales, suspense, mystery, YA, or just a good read. I'd say it's clean enough for any age to read. Just depends on the gore factor. And a big
As you read the blurb, you can probably tell that this book is a take off of Little Red Riding Hood. What I was a little unprepared for was that it is set in the present-day time period, I guess I expected it to be dated back in the 1800's with all the hunting werewolves with axes and wearing red cloaks etc. That didn't necessarily take away from the book, I just would have thought that there would have been more people that knew about werewolves and more efficient ways to exterminate them, ha ha.I was undecided of what I thought about this book most of the way thru it. The end of the book showed a lot of action and realistic thought processes that I felt was missing thru the first part of the book. The story is told from alternating view points from the sisters, Scarlett and Rosie. Scarlett lost her eye and gained ugly scars protecting her little sister from the Fenris (werewolves) when they were younger. She feels the obligation now to hunt and kill all the Fenris to save the unsuspecting humans who do not know better. Rosie does not have the drive to kill all the Fenris but feels the obligation because of what her sister went thru to save her.This book is definitely a testament of sisterly love, almost to the point of creepiness. Scarlett is a girl on a mission and feels slighted if Rosie has any interest outside of the single goal of killing all the Fenris. She is OBSESSED to the point that got on my nerves in part of the book because I found it somewhat unbelievable that someone would put aside EVERYTHING in their life in pursuit of killing every Fenris they ever encounter. Scarlett (and therefore out of guilt, Rosie) had given up everything; a life, an education, a career, love...in pursuit of the Fenris.I didn't dislike the book, but I probably would have enjoyed it more if the obsessed factor was turned down a notch and the romance/action was turned up. It was definitely an interesting read that makes you question, how much drive is too much? To what point is your goal worth giving up everything you might want and making those around you to do the same out of guilt?
Title: Sisters RedAuthor: Jackson PearcePublisher: Little, Brown Books for Young ReadersFormat: HardbackLength: 336pgsRating: 3/5Well, my friends, this brings us to the end of my twelve days of Christmas reviews. I hope you've enjoyed them. Now, on with the review:From Goodreads:Scarlet March lives to hunt the Fenris--the werewolves that took her eye when she was defending her sister Rosie from a brutal attack. Armed with a razor-sharp hatchet and blood-red cloak, Scarlett is an expert at luring and slaying the wolves. She's determined to protect other young girls from a grisly death, and her raging heart will not rest until every single wolf is dead.Rosie March once felt her bond with her sister was unbreakable. Owing Scarlett her life, Rosie hunts ferociously alongside her. But even as more girls' bodies pile up in the city and the Fenris seem to be gaining power, Rosie dreams of a life beyond the wolves. She finds herself drawn to Silas, a young woodsman who is deadly with an ax and Scarlett's only friend--but does loving him mean betraying her sister and all that they've worked for?I really liked this story. It's a tad darker than I normally read though, which I was surprised to think that. The idea was a modern day "Little Red Riding Hood" which if you're looking for that, I'd say you've come to the right place - that is if you're looking for some girls that know how to stand up for themselves and kick some serious arse. Seriously. These girls know how to handle their weapons. Scarlet and Rosie's goal is to kill as many Fenris as they can, until they realize that there's a "potential" on the lose, and all the Fenris want to change him. They gang up with Silas, a handsome boy, to go and take down Fenris, as well as prevent the potential from changing.While reading I really attached myself to Scarlet. It was probably because I'm the oldest and I can understand the need to protect your younger siblings against everything (and it probably didn't help that my little sister's middle name is Rose - I'm not kidding). I think my only problem is that I went in thinking her arc may be to realize there is more to the world than hunting Fenris, and that doesn't happen. She's a very hard person, and when I say that I mean she's very protective of her sister, but she doesn't let many things in. Scarlet is super strong though, and has a drive that I find admirable.Then there is Rosie. She's the sweet little sister that wants Scarlet to see that she's grown up. The other thing is that she doesn't see herself always slaying Fenris - especially when Silas comes into the picture. She wants more to life, and when she starts to fall for Silas she finally sees that this may be able to come true. I thought Rosie was really cute. My only problem was when it came to Silas. I seriously wanted him with Scarlet, not Rosie. But that's just me.Of course, Silas. I loved him a lot. I was heartbroken at the end *spoiler* when he had his conversation with Scarlet about how he had liked her for a very long time. He had loved her, but he knew that killing Fenris would always come first for her, and he wanted to come first. So when he got to really see and know Rosie, and she loved him and put him first... well... clearly he's going to fall in love with her too. I... just... didn't like that. I'm not sure why.In the end, Sisters Red is a pretty great book. I really enjoyed the twist on the werewolves, and, as per usual, I love the strong female leads. Pick this book up if you're looking for something a little bit different this holiday season.
What if the wolf in the story of "Little Red Riding Hood" was a werewolf? What if he actually ate the grandmother and the little girl had a sister and grew up to hunt the wolves? This is the premise of this book. Scarlet protected her sister Rosie from the wolf that slaughtered their grandmother. Although Rosie owes her sister her life, she realizes that she does not have the same need to hunt the wolves as her sister does. She also realizes that when Silas comes home after being in CA for a year, that time with him is what she wants. As the wolves resurface in the area they live, Scarlet is excited for the hunt but is she the only one that is dedicated to the hunt? I enjoyed this retelling and look forward to reading more books in the series.
My thoughts...I have gotten in the habit lately of NOT reading the book summary for fear of spoilers. So I went into this knowing the cover is brilliant and the author is bubbling with personality, a bit risky I know. The prologue, which quickly reveals this is a sort of Little Red Riding Hood tale, instantly sets me on the edge of my seat, chewing on my lip. It is scary, edgy and intense-and that's just the prologue. The actual story starts years later, when the March sisters, Scarlett and Rosie live in a small cottage where they live as hunters. They search for and destroy the creatures that destroyed their former lives and their innocence. We also meet Silas, the young woodsman who lives up the road. His fate has let him on a similar path, although it is clear early on he does not embrace his fate like Scarlett March does. I felt that all of the characters were brilliantly written. I could sympathize with each of the March sisters and their unique situations. I have to admit once I discovered this was a fairy tale remake, I was a bit concerned. Fortunately, there was no reason for concern. Sisters Red takes some of the themes from Little Red and uses them to create a very exciting paranormal tale. The story is full of suspense, the kind where you want to warn the characters to "turn around" or "don't talk to them". Aside from the action, this blooms into a love story, a bittersweet one. I found myself torn between heart and head, wanting peace for all the characters involved. I did find the twist a bit predictable, but this just allowed me to enjoy the details of the story more. It actually built my anticipation, waiting to see how things would unfold. Overall, this is a wonderful book for fans of YA of any age. I did not notice an abundance of foul language or sexual situations (just some mild kissing). The book is rated ages 15 and up, I imagine due to the violence. Some of the scenes are pretty grizzly. For my first fairy tale retelling, this one set the bar pretty high!Cover LOVE? Just now, I realize the wolf's face in the picture. All I noticed before was the two sisters. Brilliant. This is one of my favorite covers.
I love a good fairy-tale retelling. Loved Ash, really liked Beastly, and though I haven't read the book, I am over-the-moon in love with the broadway show, Wicked. Sisters Red was definitely no exception. I actually wouldn't call this a retelling. More like a complete re-imagining of the Little Red Riding Hood fairy tale. It was brilliant.From page one of the prologue, you jump into the excitement and eerie mood of this tale. You meet two little sisters, Scarlett and Rosie, and see them being approached in their front yard by a man you just know is pure evil from the moment he slithers up. By the end of the prologue (the prologue, people...not even having gotten to the first chapter!) I was hooked. The writing throughout was excellent and the plot flowed perfectly.This is set in modern times, and at first my head refused to wrap around that! The girls, both in their teens, lived in the woods in their grandmother's cottage, so my mind imagined them in the time of Grimm fairy tales. In the next breath, you see them roaming the city in jeans and tees, and going to community centers for origami lessons...it was a shock to the brain! But this setting added edge to the plot, as the girls roam the city streets with their concealed Fenris-fighting weapons, sporting a red cloak and a flirtatious walk to entice the wolves to themselves. The fenris are transformed into perfectly gorgeous men to lure girls into the woods or down dark alleys where they change back to wolves and attack. Scarlett and Rosie let themselves be lured away, before revealing that they have trained their whole lives to fight and kill these monsters! I would love to see this book made into a movie---the fight scenes would be amazing!The relationship between the sisters is very intense and special. They have always felt that they have one shared heart. Scarlett, who is older, lives her life with the need to protect Rosie and other young girls from the Fenris, so much so that she has completely sacrificed herself to that mission. She is marked from head to toe with her battle scars and she is missing an eye. You see her lament her stolen looks at times throughout the story and other times she just sees it as a small price to pay to have kept her sister safe. It's what drives her and makes her live for the hunt. Rosie, on the other hand, is conflicted between owing her sister her life and wanting more. She feels obligated to fight by Scarlett's side, but she isn't driven to it like her sister is. Plus, she is suddenly looking at their life-long friend and fighting partner, Silas, with new eyes. Yes, there is actually a beautiful and sweet romance woven into this tale of bloody battles with wolves!I've heard some say this was a little predictable, and while I do admit that on a particular important plot twist, I literally shouted out, "I knew it!", it was more out of satisfaction that my suspicions were confirmed than disappointment that I'd predicted it. It didn't lessen my enjoyment of this story in the least bit.Pick this one up and soon! I very highly recommend it!
I have heard so many good things about this book, so when I opened it up I went in hoping it would be good. Well, it wasn¿t just good it was awesome!! I loved this book! The story focuses on two sisters, Rosie and Scarlett March. Remember Little Red Riding Hood? These girls take that image to a whole new level. When they were young the girls were attacked which left Scarlett permanently scarred and Rosie feeling indebted to her for life. The sisters hunt the Fenris, the ¿big, bad wolf¿ on steroids, 24/7 in hopes of riding the world of their evil. Scarlett is strong, independent and almost has tunnel vision when it comes to killing Fenris, it is what she lives for. She also remains unattached to almost everything in her life except her sister, Rosie, and her best friend, Silas. Jackson describes Scarlett by saying ¿Her body could never allow tears-it isn¿t trained for it¿¿ while that may be the case, she is still lovable because of her fierce protection over those she loves.Rosie is easy to love because it is easy to relate with her. She loves her sister and wants to fight the Fenris just as much as Scarlett, but she also wants more, maybe not more, just something that just belongs to her. She longs for the simple things in life and to have a piece of that life not include hunting. On the other side of that same need is her desire to please her sister. She feels as though she owes Scarlett her life and therefore all of her free time must be spent hunting down the evil that threatens to take lives of more innocent girls. It is this inner struggle that Rosie battles with throughout this story.One of the biggest themes that comes out of this book is the bond these two sisters share. Their bond is like no other, they often describe it as a ¿shared heart¿ they feel as though they are one soul that has been split into two bodies and that emotion leaps off the page and into the readers grasp. I felt how much they cared for each other as the novel progressed and it made me cheer for them even more.The other major factor in this tale is Silas, a woodsman and hunting partner to Scarlett. He has been away for a while and upon his return Rosie suddenly catches his eye. The two of them try to understand these new feelings and make sense of them, while also trying to keep on the path and hunt the Fenris. As their relationship begins to bloom and Scarlett starts to pick up on it, Rosie pulls away for fear of hurting her sister which is the last thing she would ever want to do. I understand Rosie¿s hesitation, but I really love Silas and her together so I was steadily hoping they would get a happy ending.There is a mystery that needs to be figured out as the book progresses and if you pay attention I think you will discover the answer, though you may not want too. I know that was part of the fun for me, going back and re-reading passages to try and decide what the outcome was going to be. It kept me turning pages so fast, I devoured this book in one day. As of now this book has two planned companion novels that you read more about on Jackson¿s site here. I know I will be on the lookout for them
I really enjoyed this twist on the story of Little Red Ridding Hood.
Once upon a time, Scarlett saved her younger sister Rosie from a Fenris, a werewolf that killed her grandmother and left her scarred. Now, as young women they hunt the Fenris, donning red capes and sweet smiles to lure them out. Scarlett and Rosie share a deep bond, as though each has two halves of the same heart, but that bond becomes threatened as Rosie begins to learn that there is a life beyond the horrors of hunting Fenris. This is an incredibly creative use of the "Little Red Riding Hood" fairytale, taking the bare bones of the story and many of its tropes and then shaping en entirely new world and mythology around it. Pearce switches back and forth from each of the sisters' point of view, giving them each a voice and room to grow. They are both vivid characters, struggling to survive and do good in the dangerous world in which they live. Also, the romance in this book is done just right, making the sweetness of the intimacy between the two characters develop naturally, without all the swooning over looks that some authors get into (which is all well and good, but can get old after a while). This book was a fun read, which got my heart pounding in excitement at more than one point while reading it.
Sisters Red is a beefy morsel to sink your teeth into. A chilling tale of Red Riding Hood only little red isn¿t the weak defenseless girl in this one. She- being Scarlett is a brave and fierce character who hunts the wolves and craves their death as much as the wolves crave feasting on pretty girls. The story opens with gruesome violence and sets the tone that is not a quaint little fairy tale; blood and fear coat the world the sister¿s share. Instead of bringing cookies to grandmother¿s house, grandmother is brutally killed and Scarlet is left without an eye, scars all over her body and a younger sister to look after.This was my first Jackson Pearce book, and I did enjoy the story as well as the writing. I thought the twisty take on a very popular fairy tale made this original and entertaining. I also loved the fact that Pearce made her female characters strong and very independent; including making Scarlett a character severely flawed in looks, but also beautiful at the same time. Some aspects of course were unbelievable, the lack of adults, the premise of sixteen year old kids living in a house and paying all the bills with no money and no jobs and no schooling was down right laughable. Overall though, it was a fun ride of blood and action, with a little kissing on the side.
After reading Pearce¿s debut novel, As You Wish, I knew that she was capable of writing romance so I looked at Sisters Red more closely for the action than anything else. I love the action¿very kick-butt modern-day hero¿that still managed to incorporate the beloved fairy tale aspects¿hatchets, capes, countryside and grandmas. However, it was the romance that I felt brought the level of the book down. It felt so forced that I had a hard time buying it.Jackson Pearce does a great job of creating two very contrasting characters that still has close ties; how one event can change so drastically that these two sisters have very different personalities. Rosie is the romantic while Scarlett is the cynical realist. This is a visible attribute with Scarlett¿s scars and missing right eye. In essence Pearce does an amazing job creating symbolisms and ironic situations. There are times when dramatic irony becomes, well, not really dramatic nor ironic and just plain ol¿ predictable.Overall: Sisters Red while original, despite it being a fairy tale retelling, proved to be sluggish at points. It is still a good step in the right direction that I think will bring a new group of readers.
A Fenris, a terrifying werewolf creature, permanently scarred and disfigured young Scarlett March when she fought him to defend her younger sister, Rosie. Now teenagers, Scarlett and Rosie live on their own in their late grandmother¿s cottage in the woods, killing Fenris whenever they can. For Scarlett, it¿s a way of life: she loves nothing more than the high of hunting Fenris.Rosie, however, is beginning to think that, despite her loyalty to and love for her sister, she may want something more than hunting, especially as she begins to fall for their childhood friend and Scarlett¿s hunting partner, Silas. When a Fenris-hunting expedition into Atlanta draws Rosie and Silas closer even as Fenris close in on them, will Rosie¿s desire for more destroy the relationship she has with Scarlett, to whom she owes her life?You thought you knew all there was to know about Little Red Riding Hood and her wolf¿well, you were wrong. Told from the alternating viewpoints of sisters Scarlett and Rosie, Jackson Pearce¿s second novel, SISTERS RED, is an incredibly entertaining and deliciously dark twist on an old, fairy tale-esque story.This novel has got many things going for it: strong female characters with great voices, a fully realized and frightening antagonist, and a clever storyline. Scarlett and Rosie are fantastic females who prove that you don¿t have to be a tomboy to kick ass. The sister bond is powerful in a realistic way; both of them would do almost anything for each other, and yet there are also the usual tensions one would expect between sisters, of being the same person versus developing one¿s own identity.The Fenris are delectably creepy, a shiver-inducing combination of fantastical monster and your sadly usual male predator. Jackson Pearce develops their mythology well throughout the novel. These are the kind of werewolves that will haunt you long after you put the book down, and I appreciated that the villains of this novel were not cartoonish or overdramatized.The story I mentioned is clever, albeit occasionally slow and predictable. It builds up to a tremendously satisfying finish, the kind that only the best paranormal authors can pull off without seeming either too expected or out-of-nowhere. A careful reader, however, will be able to pick up the clues as to what will happen way before Scarlett and Rosie do. This by no means detracts from the success of the story and its ending, though I do honestly prefer my books to be able to outsmart me.Overall, SISTERS RED should not disappoint readers looking for a paranormal action story containing independent females, a sweet and believable romance, and well-developed villains. It¿s a unique blend of the old-fashioned (their rural cottage, their cloaks, hatchets as weapons) and the modern (Atlanta, the dialogue, what they wear under their cloaks). I won¿t be surprised if Jackson Pearce has a long and successful career writing a variety of YA. SISTERS RED is perfect for a delightful weekend or vacation read!
Scarlett and Rosie are sisters totally devoted to each other and their best friend, Silas. They are hunters -- they hunt the Fenris, seeking to rid their town of them (werewolves!) All is going well until Rosie begins to think there might be more to life than hunting. She is also having some interesting feelings toward Silas, and it looks like he feels the same way about her. It's a modern fairytale based VERY loosely on the Red Riding Hood story, but it is NOT for the young and innocent. The action is swift, the violence vivid and detailed, and the story is actually very scary. Told in the alternating voices of Scarlett and Rosie, we see the story from both points of view, so the reader is actively involved in their feelings. It's a page-turner, but I wished that there was a bit more depth of character and that the violence was a bit less gruesome.
Sisters Red is absolutely fantastic. The idea is genius, the action is heart-stopping, the romance is hot and the bond between sisters Scarlett and Rosie is like nothing that I¿ve ever read before. It was a big leap from As You Wish, but Jackson Pearce wrote another winner with this one.Alternating POVs make me nervous. Usually, I like to stay in the head of one character for the entire length of a book. So knowing that I¿d be switching back and forth between Rosie and Scarlett definitely didn¿t appeal to me. But once I actually started reading, I couldn¿t get enough. The sisters have completely different personalities, but their drive to protect and care for one another is the same.Despite how much I enjoyed reading about how the sisters kicked some major fenris ass, I fell in love with the blossoming romance between Rosie and their lifelong friend and partner in fenris ass-kicking, Silas. He`s sweet, protective and supportive of her desire to live a life outside of the fenris. One of my favorite literary romances ever!And don¿t get me started on that epic ending .. I was crying and cheering and having multiple reactions that were so hysteric and loud that I probably woke the neighbors.Overall, Sisters Red is an amazing modern and paranormal twist on Little Red Riding Hood. The March sisters tell a story of heroism, love, and an unbreakable but slightly dysfunctional bond between them that not even the most dangerous fenris can touch. I definitely recommend it to anyone and everyone!
Before reading this book I read a few reviews, all were indicating that this book was a modern retelling of the classic fairytale little red riding hood which sounded really interesting to me however this book really blew my mind I never expected it to go in the direction it did. Sisters Red is told in two alternating points of views between Scarlett and Rosie March, two sisters whose love of each other is so strong. The start of the book begins seven years ago when Scarlett was attacked by a Fenris (basically a werewolf) while trying to save her sister, Rosie, leaving her with a missing eye and scars all over her body. From this moment both Scarlett and Rosie¿s lives will never be the same, their eyes have been opened to a sinister new world. Seven years later we find that both sisters have dedicated their lives to saving other girls and women from a similar fate to Scarlett by actively hunting the Fenris, however in order to lure the Fenris the girls must act as bait wearing a red cape (apparently red attracts the Fenris) and strong perfume. Soon we are introduced to Silas who was once Scarlett¿s hunting partner but left for a year to stay with his uncle in San Francisco. Scarlett saw this as Silas abandoning her and the hunt, she couldn¿t understand how he could have a life that did not include hunting Fenris. Now Silas is back and rejoins the girls in their hunt. What follows is a thrilling and suspenseful story that kept me glued to the pages, I don¿t want to give too much away but the final fight scene was intense, wow Jackson Pearce¿s writing is amazing! Both Scarlett and Rosie were such captivating characters with so much strength, I loved them both. Whilst the sisters fought together with the same goal, to kill the Fenris, they did it for two completely different reasons. Scarlett actually enjoyed hunting the Fenris it was like a life blood for her, when she wasn¿t hunting she was restless and unhappy. Scarlett believed that because they knew of the Fenis¿ existence they had a responsibility to hunt the Fenris, once you find out something exists you cannot simply ignore it. Whereas for Rosie hunting the Fenris was not all consuming, she still wanted to do other things, she waned to have a life apart from hunting, however she felt that she had a responsibility to fight because Scarlett saved her and when the two sisters fought together it brought them closer, their hearts becoming one. Towards the start of the novel I found myself not understanding Scarlett¿s black and white view on fighting the Fenris, and felt sorry for Rosie because she was so torn between duty to her sister and living the life she really wanted to live, however I soon felt myself softening towards Scarlett because of what she has gone through. Whilst she is strong she has insecurities just like everyone, she is not made to steel. Of particular concern is Rosie leaving her because apart from hunting Rosie is all she has. For all you romance lovers there was also a developing romance between Silas and Rosie. This was not a sudden romance it took time for the relationship to develop especially because Rosie was so torn between what Scarlett would think and what she wants. But Silas was patient, I¿m sure he didn¿t want to hurt Scarlett either. Silas was a great character who loved both sisters. He may have hunted with Scarlett but he was not as obsessed with the hunt as Scarlett was. I especially loved how Silas took the time with Rosie to show her that hunting is not everything and gave her the little push she needed in order to do something for herself. I definitely recommend this book, it was full of suspense, intrigue and a bit of romance. The relationship between the sisters was so powerful and beautiful. I also enjoyed reading the characters develop especially Rosie who realized she could have a life other than hunting and Scarlett who also realized that she needed to let her sister go her own way. I will definitely be reading the next book in th
Seriously!No really, seriously!So¿.you know that when I start a review with the word I over use most in the English vocabulary I have to be loving a book right? Well seriously, I loved this book. Not in an irrational and creepy way ¿ you know like slipping it under my pillow at night so that it¿s with me while I sleep. But still, I loved me some Sister¿s Red.Ok, so let me pepper you with a few more questions to make my point further.You know what I¿m a fan of? That is, more than awesome writing and great character development? I¿m a fan of taking great big giant leaps of faith. The kind of risks that can either fail so epically or soar to the highest highs of success.Guess where Sisters Red falls on that spectrum? Yup, you got it, highest of highs baby.The best example of both is Pearce¿s ability to create a supernaturally themed story that feels so steeped in reality. Many times throughout, I found myself questioning whether this situation could actually be happening in real life amongst my most familiar surroundings. It was dark and brooding and at times mysterious. Neither the events that transpired nor the places they lived felt mysticaly charged, though there were allusions to Little Red Riding Hood on which the story is very loosely based.That, to me, these factors are the marks of a truly great story. And make no mistake, Sisters Red is a fabulous story.Another way Pearce demonstrates her exemplary skill is the fact, that though the story is built on the foundation of a well known fairy tale and includes shapeshifting werewolves, it is a story that is primarily about the love two sisters share. It¿s about growing up and growing apart and arriving at a point in your life when you no longer live for someone else but live for yourself. It was emotional and filled with turmoil but in the very best ways.I enjoy a little romance in a story, don¿cha know, and the inclusion of one here wasn¿t any different. In the case of this story it was not the central focus which I appreciated. Don¿t get me wrong it played a big role and initiated it¿s fair share of angst but it wasn¿t overbearing. It was sweet and brought a certain amount of lightheartedness to an otherwise dark story.Fantastically written, amazingly plotted ¿ even if you aren¿t a fan of werewolves or paranormal fare I think picking up Sisters Red is well worth the endeavor.