I received this book via Author. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.Eerie by C.M. McCoy
Published by Omnific Publishing on 2015-12-15
Length: 411 pages
Reviewing eARC from Author
Hailey's dreams have always been, well...vivid. As in monsters from her nightmares follow her into her waking life vivid.
When her big sister goes missing, eighteen-year-old Hailey finds the only thing keeping her safe from a murderous 3,000-year-old beast is an equally terrifying creature who has fallen "madly" in love with her. Competing to win her affection, the Dream Creature, Asher, lures her to the one place that offers safety--a ParaScience university in Alaska he calls home. There, she studies the science of the supernatural and must learn to live with a roommate from Hell, survive her ParaScience classes, and hope the only creature who can save her from an evil immortal doesn't decide to kill her himself.
My brain hurts, my heart hurts, and I’m sick to my stomach after reading Eerie by C.M. McCoy. It was a fantastic read, BUT an emotional rollercoaster for me. Hailey’s life is turned upside down after her older sister Holly is taken from their uncle’s pub leaving behind only her foot (still in its shoe). Obviously this is the catalyst for a series of events in Hailey’s life that lands her at Bear Towne University in The Middle of Nowhere, Alaska studying ParaScience under a man who has haunted her dreams since she was a girl. Too much for you?! Oh it gets better *insert sarcasm here*
I really liked Hailey. She’s a young girl who has lost everyone she’s ever cared about. Her parents died when she was a kid and now her sister is missing, likely dead. Despite all this she has been through, she isn’t wallowing in a pit of self-pity….you know like the rest of us would. Instead she heads to college in a town called The Middle of Nowhere to study ParaScience. Hailey believes that someone killed her parents, she sees monsters in her dreams and one of those monsters just stepped into her waking life.
Asher is an Envoy AND the monster from Hailey’s dreams. I’m not really sure how I feel about him. He was possessive, clingy, and emotionless. Now he was SUPPOSED to be emotionless, it’s part of his nature, but it was just weird for me. He was scary and I just didn’t see him truly loving Hailey as he claims (not a spoiler, this is evident from the Prologue). Asher, to me, sees Hailey as a possession, a conquest to win….not cool!
Fin however *dreamy-eyed swooning in progress* I could get on board with. Fin is a college student, working at Hailey’s uncle’s pub when Holly disappears. He quickly becomes her best friend, someone she can commiserate with and her person. He holds her together, is her rock, and confidante. Fin also has some big secrets and I’ll be honest I wasn’t too sure about him in the beginning, but he grew on me.
My favorite character though is Tomas, an 11-ish ghost who appears after Holly disappears and becomes Hailey’s hairdresser. He doesn’t speak other than to write words on mirrors, but he does great hair!
If you’ve read the blurb for the book, you know you’re in for a fun, paranormal read and it is that! BUT I don’t think the blurb does the book justice. It is so much more than just a paranormal romance. The book is truly urban fantasy and reminds me of one of my favorite series The Unearthly by Laura Thalassa. Hailey leaves home not really understanding anything beyond what Asher has told her (and allowed her to remember) in her dreams, which isn’t much. She arrives at Bear Towne like any new freshman at college, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed ready to learn it all. What she doesn’t expect is carnivorous trees, Yetis, spiteful poltergeists, or Fin. She also doesn’t expect an Envoy wishing to kill her, but that’s for you to read about…
Overall I really enjoyed the book and would have given it 5s, but I had a really hard time following the book in the beginning. There were times that I thought I’d skipped a chapter, but it was the head-hopping between characters that made it hard to follow. Also the beginning really dragged. In my opinion, the first 12-15 chapters could have been combined and condensed, getting Hailey to Bear Towne quicker and keeping the pace steady throughout the book.
If you enjoy coming of age, paranormal romance, and urban fantasy, I highly recommend you grab a copy of this book. It is a MUST read and I cannot wait for more….just be warned there is a cliffhanger that left me reeling. I really hope we don’t have to wait too long!!!
A Guarded Girl
“Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness.” ~Bertrand Russell
Hailey stared at the empty can on her tray, silently willing the caffeine to kick in. The last thing she needed was to fall asleep, dream of monsters, and have an “episode” in front of her 200 closest non-friends.
No way she’d let that happen.
Now if only her droopy eyelids would cooperate, because the hard plastic chair under her butt sure wasn’t. The dang thing was teasing her and feeling mighty comfy, like a puffy armchair, and she was sinking fast. Thankfully, though, just as her head bobbed, the bell rang, jolting her into a wide-eyed, full-body spasm.
Great. Real smooth, she thought, rubbing her face with both hands as a few gigglers shuffled past.
She groaned, rising with all the enthusiasm of a mushroom, not at all looking forward to another two hours inside the social torture chamber, or as everyone else referred to it, South Side High School.
She was so intent on avoiding the students there for the rest of her senior year that she rarely looked up from her books anymore, and those last two hours dragged. When three o’clock finally rolled around, she bolted outside, took the first open seat on the bus, rested her head against the window, and let it bounce there. She was just about to make it through another day of school very happily unnoticed, when Tage Adams smacked her on the back of the head.
“Ah!” she yelled, startled from sleep.
The bus was waiting at their stop, like normal, and Tage was waiting for her in the aisle, politely—not normal.
Tucking a wayward strand behind her ear, she hurried off the bus.
“What’s up with you today?” he said nonchalantly, adjusting his pace to walk next to her.
He’d never done that before.
“Nothing,” Hailey said, surprised Tage was talking to her. They’d been catching the bus at the same stop for four years, and he’d never so much as looked at her.
“You’re usually not like that, that’s all.”
“Nodding off in class, falling asleep on the bus…you know, slacking off. It’s just, you know, you usually have your nose in a book.”
He watches me?
“Oh,” she said, unsure.
“Guess you were working late last night…St. Paddy’s Day…”
“Yeah.” Of course she was working late. Her family owned the most popular Irish pub in Pittsburgh. Hailey pressed her lips together. Small talk was not her thing. Especially not with him.
Her mind went blank.
Searching the pavement for a thought, she chewed her lip as too many seconds stretched the silence. Finally the pressure forced her good sense aside and she opened her mouth to say…anything.
“Well, see ya ‘round, Dancing Queen.”
She snapped her mouth shut and waved as he peeled off and trotted down Bridge Street. She tried to form the word, “bye,” but all that came out was “buh—”. Standing dumbfounded, she stared after him. She hadn’t realized Tage knew she existed, let alone the fact that she waitressed. And danced.
Stunned, Hailey walked, then jogged, then stopped dead to puzzle over what had just happened. Then she jogged again until she finally reached the pub.
Nobody at that school “chatted” with Hailey. Not since the fourth grade, not since the day a particularly mean girl concocted a particularly ugly rumor—that Hailey had started the fire that killed her parents. The whispers and sideways glances lasted close to a year, and in trying to defend herself, Hailey only made things worse. By the time she figured out that nobody else believed in pyromaniac-nightmare-monsters, it was too late. She’d already earned the label, “weirdo,” which, unfortunately, stuck.