Marked – Amy Saunders (Review)

Title: Marked (The Birthright #2)
Author: Amy Saunders 
Publisher: Amy Saunders, 2016
Genre: YA Science Fiction

**I received this book free from the Publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review**

This review can be found on my BlogTeacherofYA’s Tumblr, or my Goodreads page

My Review:

I was drawn to the first book in the series, Inborn, mainly because of the cover. It was so pretty on NetGalley, and you guys know how I feel about science fiction and fantasy. I gave the first book three stars because it was a little confusing, but the writing was good. It ended on a cliffhanger…and I really kind of forgot about it in the meantime. 

That is, until NetGalley offered the second book, Marked. I should have known better, but I couldn’t really remember the premise (it wasn’t super memorable), but I remembered that pretty cover. So I requested the second book. Once I started reading it, it all started coming back to me, and I had high hopes that this one would be better and clarify a lot of questions I had left over from the first book. (I reviewed the first book before I was blogging, but if you’re interested in that review, just go to my Goodreads Review for it).

Alas, all it led to were more questions and more confusion. 

Here’s the beautiful cover, so you can see what drew me to it…then you may not blame me for requesting it…

Absolutely stunning, right? #coverlove all day long. 

Well, let me explain the premise of the books, and you’ll see for yourself:

So, Rosamund Brandt is an alien. There’s a lot of them on Earth, and humans don’t know about them. In Inborn, we learn that there is a killer on the loose, and an organization called Earth Patrol (yeah, that’s their name…I know) are like the police of alien matters. They are investigating the murders, but Rosamund actually found one of the dead girls on their property, and she was wrapped up in some kind of web. Hence, the nickname Spider Killer. Well, I’ll cut to the chase…turns out good ol’ dad is the killer: he is immortal and has energy stealing powers, and he needs to kill his daughter to take her emerging powers because he fed on a bad energy source and now he’s dying. Her “uncle” helps and they strip him of his killing power in the first book, but he escapes from them via a portal, one of the few powers he has left. It’s a power he shares with his daughter.

Fast forward to several months later and Rosamund, Xavier (her powerless brother), and her intergalactically famous healer mom are moving constantly, trying to stay away from daddy. He tracks them down during a parent-conference meeting at school since Rosamund’s grades are dropping. (My grades would suffer too if my dad tried to suck my life force dry, too). He insists he will stay in his family’s life, and though they are angry, they must allow it to “keep up appearances” that they are only separated. (Why? If someone tried to kill my whole frailty, despite being a member, I wouldn’t hesitate getting a restraining order. Doesn’t need to say “alien” in the report, just the fact that he tried to kill them all…but we must keep up “appearances?”) 

But this isn’t Roz’s (I’m going with the nickname; Rosamund takes too long) biggest problem: she now has a brand on her skin that she hides from everyone and her powers are changing. She also has spells where she blanks out and is somewhere else. Oh, and then there’s that pesky levitating going on…

Xavier is distant; apparently his feelings are hurt because it’s “all about Roz” (“Marsha, Marsha, Marsha!”) and he’s resentful. He starts acting weird and distant, and Roz doesn’t tell him anything about what’s going on. The only person she trusts is her boyfriend Bryce, a human and member of Earth Patrol, but he’s insisting they stay away for her own safety. Apparently her powers are drawing others’ attention, and with dad’s recent killing spree, there’s confusion about whether he is the only threat. Maybe the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree? Meanwhile Roz meets Ryder, another alien that wants to be friends with her. She tries to keep her distance, but he kind of latches on and won’t let go. There’s also a mysterious stranger named Trent who happens to come in the nick of time whenever Roz’s life is threatened…and he’s sexy and not related to her, unlike her last crush, who turned out to be her uncle. (You see how this can get confusing fast?)

I won’t give away the whole story in case someone is working on this book, but the story focuses on Rosamund’s growing powers and her suspicion of everyone around her: who is being truthful and who isn’t? Can she trust anyone with what’s going on with her? And why did her father tell her she needs to be careful, because she is “going to need allies” in the coming days? There’s a storm brewing, and Rosamund is right in the middle of it all.

Is It Classroom-Appropriate?

Yes, but the plot is too unfocused. There are so many characters, and there’s stuff about her mother’s past that is coming to the surface…you would have to bring the first book in, and there’s still more questions at the end of this book. There another book coming out, and maybe if everything were to come full circle and get explained, you could use all three in a science fiction unit…but there’s also the problem of too much going on in such a short book. It feels rushed. Just confusing. But the writing is good. If Saunders could just either make the books longer or keep some material out, then I think she could make a really good series.

Age Range:

There is no Lexile score because it is an indie book. But I would say (because the complexity of the plot) that the older, the better. Well, maybe not even age should be considered, because the book is pretty clean. I would say it’s all about reader level. I would suggest an advanced reader. So the book could be read by a 12 year old, but that 12 year old should read at a high school level so that they could follow the plot.

End Result:

★★★☆☆ again for book two. I did fall asleep a couple times…I had to reread passages to understand what was going on. The sad part is the writer has talent. Saunders is super-talented. But maybe this material just isn’t for her. I will probably request the next book, because I can’t stand not knowing what is going on. I even read the very short novella called Bequest to see if that would shed some light on the story…but it just made it worse. I just want to know what is going on…is that too much to ask?

Thank you again to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for allowing me a copy to read in exchange for my honest opinion.

***Here’s the cover of the first book, Inborn, just so you can experience the cover love with me***

18 thoughts on “Marked – Amy Saunders (Review)

    1. Yeah…that was the tell-tale sign that I wasn’t into the book. I face planted onto my iPad one time…I’m glad it was a slow face plant! Other times it was just so quick that I realized I had no idea where I was and what page I was on…my hand would hold down the highlight by accident and bright yellow passages popped out at me! I practically taped my eyelids open to finish the book, lol. 🙄

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I can definitely see why you requested this book from NetGalley, definite cover love 🙂
    But yeah this book just sounds a little too strange for me, and I’m not really interested enough to pick it up myself. Also is that a love square I sense coming?
    Still you comments really made me laugh, if my dad went on a killing spree my grades would suffer well, and I’d definitely get a restraining order as well. That’d be like number one on my to-do list!
    It’s a shame you didn’t enjoy this book much though, it always sucks when you don’t like a book as much as you hope. Is there a third one, also will you pick it up if there is?
    Either way great review! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If there is a third one (which there is…it already shows a future date for it on GR), I will read it ONLY because I have invested so much time in it. I want to know WTF is going on! I want to know about this coming war…I want to know why everything is happening in this book! Why??
      I will probably still be disappointed…but at least I won’t have unanswered questions…At least I hope I won’t…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. In that case I reckon you’re the same as me, can’t leave a series unfinished. Normally, no matter how bad a series is, unless it’s terrible beyond belief I can’t leave it unfinished. I always need to know how it ends.
        Yeah hopefully this ending gives you all the answers you’ll need!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. There’s only one series I’ve no intention of finishing and that’s the Shattered Lives: Broken Dreams book I reviewed as a RaR…zombies and sex. Can’t do it again!
        But otherwise I HAVE to finish a series. It’s like a compulsion.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Have you posted a review for that book on your blog? I don’t remember seeing it but I have a terrible memory so it’s possible I could have.
        But yeah I know what you mean, the only series I won’t be finishing myself is Reign of Shadows by Sophie Jordan. I was not a fan of any of that book really

        Liked by 1 person

    2. No, I read Inborn before my blogging days…I put a link in the post to my Goodreads review, but I felt silly posting a review for a book I didn’t like after the fact. This blog is pretty organic: everything pre-blog is on Goodreads, so A LOT of my reviews are over there!
      It took me forever just to decide to try blogging…and I started on Tumblr first. But I didn’t like the setup…it wasn’t review-compatible. Or conducive. So I tried blogspot, but that was all wonky on my iPad. Finally, I downloaded the WordPress app, and I was able to FINALLY have a working blog! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ahh, in that case I will be sure to check out your review for it on Goodreads.
        Yeah I didn’t tend to review books before my blog but there are a few I want to re-read and review just so I can talk to people about them!
        Tumblr is more visual I think, great for pictures and gifs not so great for reviews and writing. I’ve never tried Blogspot but for me it was always going to be WordPress! It just seemed like the best of the best! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh, Blogspot is HORRIBLE for iPad…it doesn’t work. And they got rid of the app because they’re obviously geniuses over there. I don’t use a PC so I basically put up a post redirecting ppl to my WordPress site. Tumblr links with my WordPress so they appear over there, too…at least as links back here, lol!
        At first when I was on GR, I only used the star rating system, and then I started reviewing them. So it says I have read like, X amount of books, but I’ll always have like, a hundred less reviews because of those first books I didn’t review. It’s too bad I can’t remember them enough to give them a proper retrospective review.
        I am, however, posting an old review tomorrow for a book I’m helping promote for an author friend…she has been with me since her book was first released and because of my enthusiasm wrote sequels for it! Book three is coming out soon, and her book will be $.99 over the next couple days…I hope you will like it. It’s an OLD review though…

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Well I have WordPress now so I definitely won’t be picking up Blogspot anytime soon. See I have my iPad but I prefer to use my laptop for pretty much everything, just because I prefer having the keyboard and having a bigger screen to look at you know, plus the WordPress app on my iPad tends to cut off people’s comments sometimes and keeps crashing as well, it’s just more reliable for me to use my laptop!
        That is a shame, on my personal account on GR I only use the star rating, but when I get around to creating an account for my blog I’ll add the reviews I’ve posted on my blog and then slowly phase out my personal account. It’s what I did with Instagram, and what I will probably do with Twitter Yeah that is a shame, will you not go back and re-read them at some point then?
        I’ll keep an eye out for it, though likely by the time I write this comment and then by the time you read it you will have already posted it and I will have likely already read it and commented on it. But I hope so too, and it’s great you’ve been helping out this author as well! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

    3. Yeah…we both have a backlog of comments building up, lol! I’m still going through Saturday’s posts! Thank goodness the email sends the comments and posts to me or I would miss so many people’s blog posts, and I want to like every one! Even if I fall behind a couple days (or almost a week in this case, lol!)
      I hope to read some of the old stuff and at least update the reviews. One day I suppose…there’s just always new stuff coming out…and I don’t even have time to do tags, which are piling up!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow that is quite a backlog! And yeah I’m glad we get emails as well, it’s always a lot easier to read stuff on my email account than it is on WordPress, especially if I’m on my phone and not on my computer you know?
        You just need to catch up, but I’m sure you’ll be able to quite quickly. 😀
        The downsides of a book blogger, I have so many tags in my queue I’m thinking it’s going to take me a year to catch up on them, but I’m slowly making my way through! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

    4. Omg, me too! I have like. 90 something tags and I want to do them, but the time is better spent reading my emails of YOUR GUYS’ POSTS or reading my books to get them done, so the tags end up waiting. I net I’ll get A LOT caught up during break. Right now, though, I’m lucky to get any read without my mom complaining I’m not “doing enough” around the house or work complaining that they need me another day…
      I’m so glad we are in the same spot. I appreciate that you always listen. 😘

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah same here. I am trying to get through my tags a little quicker but it does feel like an uphill battle at times you know, and obviously I don’t want to just post all tags because that’s got to get a little boring at times!
        Yeah break help, I always try and get caught up on the weekends just because I do have more time, and whenever I have time off work as well.
        That’s parents for you though isn’t it, they just nag a lot! :/
        That’s all right, any time. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

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