Book 1
The Artisans

May 12, 2015




Speculative Fiction

The Artisans
by Julie Reece   


In this dark southern gothic novel, a young woman meets a man who may be more than he seems. After the death of her mother, 17-year-old Rave Weathersby gives up her dream of becoming a fashion designer, barely surviving life in the South Carolina lowlands. To make ends meet, Raven works after school as a seamstress creating stunning works of fashion that often rival the great names of the day. Instead of making things easier on the high school senior, her stepdad’s drinking leads to a run in with the highly reclusive heir to the Maddox family fortune, Gideon Maddox. But Raven’s stepdad is drying out and in no condition to attend the meeting with Maddox. So Raven volunteers to take his place and offers to repay the debt in order to keep the only father she’s ever known out of jail. Gideon Maddox agrees, outlining an outrageous demand: Raven must live in his home for a year while she designs for Maddox Industries’ clothing line, signing over her creative rights. Her handsome young captor is arrogant and infuriating to the nth degree, and Raven can’t imagine working for him, let alone sharing the same space for more than five minutes. But nothing is ever as it seems. Is Gideon Maddox the monster the world believes him to be? And can he stand to let the young seamstress see him as he really is?


"A Creepy Good Read!"  By Bookaholic Banter 1 year ago

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Sweat drips from my temple as I push a needle through my friend's torn flesh....

Seventeen year old Raven Weathersby dreams of becoming a fashion designer. After the death of her mother, she gives up that dream to take care of her stepfather Ben (who is an alcoholic with a drinking problem) and works as a seamstress after school to help make ends meet.

Ben's problems lead to a run-in with the heir to the Maddox family fortune, Gideon. However, when the time came, Raven takes his place and offers to repay the debt in order to keep the only father she's ever known out of jail, or worse. Gideon Maddox agrees, under one condition: Raven must live in his home for a year while giving up her designs and designing for Maddox Industries' clothing line, signing over her creative rights. Raven can't imagine working for him, let alone living with him for a whole year. But nothing in the Maddox home is as it seems. Things are going on that Raven has no explanation for. All she wants is to put in her time and go back to her life. If she makes it out....

My Review:

This story flowed along so well I was never confused about was going on and it kept me reading and trying to solve the creepy puzzle that was going on in the Maddox home. The ending solved everything and left me with no questions.

I loved the characters in this story. They were all unique in their own way and very memorable. They were fleshed out very well. The element of creepiness in this book was done so well that at points in the story I could feel myself getting creeped out. The romance in the story was done in a way that made it real and believable. It wasn't overdone. It was just the right amount that this story needed. It wasn't rushed at all. The language in this book was tastefully written, which I loved! There wasn't a bunch of unneeded profanity. This would be a suitable read for anyone.

I didn't want this story to end. I was enjoying living in this world so much! I am so happy that there is going to be another story to follow this one and I am SO EXCITED to read it! I want more of Raven and Gideon and I can't wait to see what mysterious things will happen next in the Maddox estate. I have a feeling that the mysteriousness is far from over and that there is a lot more to come. I enjoyed every moment of reading this gothic, steampunk, creepy, and haunting mysterious romance. Bring on the next one!