Review: Veiled by Karina Halle

My Thoughts

An intense, chilling standalone romance
brimming with darkness, passion and imminent doom.

4halfstars

Synopsis

VeiledDeath.
It’s something that Ada Palomino has always known so well, having grown up in a house of horrors, surrounded by a family plagued by ghosts and demons and things that go bump in the night.
But after the sudden and tragic death of her mother two years ago, death has never felt so personal.
Or so close.
Now eighteen, Ada is trying to move on with her life and the last month of summer holds nothing but sunshine and promises with her first year at a Portland design school just around the bend.
That is until her increasingly violent and realistic dreams, dreams of other worlds, of portals and veils where her mother is tortured and souls bleed for mercy, start to blend into reality. Ada has to lean on her older sister, Perry, to try and make sense of it all but even then, she’s never felt more alone.
Then there’s Jay. Tall, handsome and deeply mysterious, Jay would be just another stranger, a familiar face on the bus, if it wasn’t for the fact that Ada has met him before.
Every night.
In every single dream.
And the more that Ada is drawn to him in both worlds, the more she’s in danger of losing everything.
Including her heart.
And her very soul.

My Review

Deliciously creepy and romantic, Karina Halle’s Veiled brims with darkness, passion and suspense. A spinoff from her Experiment with Terror series, this story explores Ada Palomino’s fate as her encounters with death suddenly become more intimate and compelling.

I loved this side of Halle. She easily hit her stride from the beginning, stirring up hair-raising chills. Toss in a little forbidden, menacing romance and a beckoning portal to Hell, and well, I was hooked.

“I swallow hard and my heart begins to thud. It’s not my imagination. I’m not asleep.”

Ada Palomino—Perry’s sister—is used a life shaped by unimaginable horrors. Demons. Ghosts. Death. But her dreams increasingly become more violent, more threatening and realistic, more heart wrenching in a way she can’t shake off. She also keeps dreaming of a man with danger etched into his irresistible features. Ada has met him before, she thinks, but now he’s a recurring element of her restless nights.

But then he’s there. Jay is there, in real life, as things start to swirl out of control.

“He could be a ghost, I could be going insane. But there was no doubt he was in my room. A dream brought to life.”

Ada’s dead mother beckons her from the pits of Hell, asking for help. Jay tries to guide her, protect her, dissuade her from giving in to her mother’s pleas. Horrors from the other world begin to bleed into her own and everything becomes murky and difficult to process. Who can she trust? What should she do? Ada was being pushed into her own destiny, one that promised death, loss, heartbreak.

To make matters worse, the truth she uncovers compromises her intensifying feelings for Jay—and if the truth doesn’t break them apart, his role in it all will bring things to an end.

“Sometimes we’re dealt a hand we never see coming. Sometimes there are only two choices. To live. Or die. And sometimes there’s a third choice… To suffer in Hell for all eternity.”

The novel is written as a standalone, but I hope that Halle continues Ada’s story. There’s so much more to explore both with characters and plot.

I loved the edginess, the touches of horror, the suspense and forbidden romance. It’s an exhilarating rabbit hole to fall into. And although Veiled is classified as a paranormal/ urban fantasy romance, I think readers of all kinds who love stories with dark intrigue and intensity will love this book.

*Note you do not have to read the Experiment in Terror series to read this book.

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