The Scent of Salt & Sand: The Escaped (Book 2.5)
by Kristin & P.C. Cast
“Eons ago, Sirens were exiled from the Mortal Realm, held captive in a cove at the edge of Tartarus. They re beautiful beyond imagination, but deadly beyond compare. And they have set their sights on breaking free.
They risk everything to sneak out of Tartarus and ascend to the forbidden Mortal Realm with one mission – mate with human men to dilute their cursed bloodline and form a new race of Sirens, free from their prison in the Underworld. But for a Siren to become pregnant, she must revert to her True Form, a horrifying sight that drives men to madness, and makes killing them a mercy. In modern San Francisco, the Sirens blend in; each woman has a singular goal, and each men she meets is her prey…
Melody Seirina has always been different. She doesn’t believe that she’ll be able to bring herself to take a human life, even when the fate of her people rests on her willingness to do so. She’s even more convinced when she meets Dean, a charming cop who sees a loving future with her. Their romance threatens two worlds, the one the Sirens fled from, and the one that will destroy them if they can’t complete their mission as soon as possible. Melody will have to make a decision – risk the future of her people or follow her heart.”
So after reading Scarlet Rain (and Amber Smoke), I tweeted about when the next Escaped book would be out and Kristin Cast replied saying about The Scent of Salt and Sand. I pretty much counted down the days to get my hands on it, I knew I would be in Canada when it came out, so I had a good chance of actually buying it in a shop. However, the day it came out I went into a bookshop in Halifax, no luck, and I tried in Toronto’s Eaton Centre, no luck. So I decided the only thing to do was to order it on Amazon, unfortunately it was out of stock but I could order it for it to be dispatched the next time they had stock. A month after release day, I had an email to say it would be delivered on December 3rd, but the next day I got a text from my friend saying it was delivered! I was so happy to finally have it, and I may have read it within 14 hours (including work and sleep). I did not know anything about The Scent of Salt and Sand, except that it was part of The Escaped series. I do not feel that you need to have read Amber Smoke and Scarlet Rain, purely because there is only a little bit of linkage which is explained enough in The Scent of Salt and Sand.
Melody is a Siren, she lives in Tartarus, where her people where banished to. But they discovered a way out when Tartarus was starting to crumble, and it leads to San Francisco. Every so often a group take the journey, so that they can mate with human men to ‘dilute’ the curse (stay young, beautiful and ‘immortal’ in Tartarus, age quickly and die of old age in the Mortal Realm) put upon them. Although Melody has always been different, she dreads the first time she travels to the Mortal Realm and she does not like blood, so how can she kill. Dean Kent is a police officer and he sees a murder by a strange creature, but his partner Kait makes fun of him for seeing an ‘alien booger monster’. He always goes to the seafront to count the ‘crazy swimming people’, when he sees one face down in the water, he jumps in to save her and comes across Melody.
Oh my gosh, that was incredible. So much packed into such a small book! It pulls you straight into the story, and I was hooked. I did not want to put it down, even after working an all-nighter! As soon as I got home I started reading it again until I was literally falling asleep. You feel so much connection to Melody that you go through the emotions with her. I was totally not expecting that ending, or what happened earlier in the book, so many great twists and turns.
My favourite characters were Melody, Dean, Kait and Harmony. Even in the start I did not trust Rhapsody and I was proved right. All the characters are so realistic it draws you more into the book, even if Sirens are Greek mythology, Kristin and P.C. bring them to life. I think my favourite part of the book has to be the parts between Melody and Dean, although I quite like the bits with Dean and Kait as well.
The Scent of Salt and Sand does end on a cliffhanger, I really want to know if it is going to link more to the main books. The Escaped series continues with the third book, as yet no name and no publication date, but I would guess around May/June.
While reading The Scent of Salt and Sand, I described it as the Sirens trying to claim back their birthright, but one deciding to not play by the rules. I would recommend this book to adults and teenagers. 5 out of 5.