by Robin Bridges
Series: Katerina #1
Published by Delacorte Press. Release date : January 10th 2012
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Historical, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult
Source: Purchased | Format: Hardcover
Purchase at: Amazon (Affiliate Link) • Audible • The Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads
St. Petersburg, Russia, 1888. As she attends a whirl of glittering balls, royal debutante Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, tries to hide a dark secret: she can raise the dead. No one knows. Not her family. Not the girls at her finishing school. Not the tsar or anyone in her aristocratic circle. Katerina considers her talent a curse, not a gift. But when she uses her special skill to protect a member of the Imperial Family, she finds herself caught in a web of intrigue.
An evil presence is growing within Europe's royal bloodlines—and those aligned with the darkness threaten to topple the tsar. Suddenly Katerina's strength as a necromancer attracts attention from unwelcome sources . . . including two young men—George Alexandrovich, the tsar's standoffish middle son, who needs Katerina's help to safeguard Russia, even if he's repelled by her secret, and the dashing Prince Danilo, heir to the throne of Montenegro, to whom Katerina feels inexplicably drawn.
The time has come for Katerina to embrace her power, but which side will she choose—and to whom will she give her heart?
You know that feeling you get when you finish a taxing task? The giddiness and that deep sigh of relief, feeling euphoric because YOU DID IT! That’s how I felt after finishing The Gathering Storm.
What caught my eye for The Gathering Storm was it’s very unique blend of paranormal and mythology in a historical setting. I hadn’t even heard of this one until I purchased it. Sadly though, there was just too much going on here and I was not able to really connect to the characters or story. It fell flat for me.
Set in 1888 Russia, fancy balls, finishing school and the undead. Katerina is a necromancer (YES!), hiding her gifts for all those around her. When people in society start being poised, the soldiers of the Order are killed and others taken from their grave, she discovers that there are sinister plans to take down the tsar. Thrown in the middle after her powers are discovered — and wanted by many for said powers — Katerina must to choose a side.
My issues with The Gathering Storm can be summed up in two words; TOO MUCH. I mean, honestly. There was just so much going on.. In the first 30 pages, there had to have been at least 15 characters introduced. Why? Not only that, we would get a good dose of information (ah info dump, how I loathe thee) then to turn around and have nothing but balls and tea parties and ice skating. I don’t know. The execution of the entire book was just poor. The concept is fascinating, the story unique but if you can’t tell it straight, there’s a problem. I did like the spin on the Dark and Light courts, though.
Katerina, while likeable, was unmemorable for me. Other than her passion for medicine, and her compassion for others, I can’t really think of anything else to say about her. >.< There are so many other secondary characters that I will just skip over that and move onto the romance. *heavy sigh* We have George, the tsar’s son and Danilo, the crown prince of Montenegro. With my disconnect to the characters as it was, I didn’t really care about this said “romance”. We know one is “evil” and one is “good”. But the romance, along with everything else, fell flat.
My Peeve – Um, yeah. I don’t want to repeat myself but info dump. The flow and the pacing of the whole book was just off. Disconnect from the characters, especially the main character. To sum, the whole flippin book.
Overall- Eh, it was okay. I won’t say I hate it because I didn’t but I didn’t really enjoy it either. Will I continue the series? No, probably not. I am not invested in the story or the characters to continue.