Thursday, January 8, 2015

Book Review: Compulsion by Martina Boone

Author:  Martina Boone
Publisher:  Simon Pulse, 448 pages
Publication Date:  October 28, 2014

From Goodreads:
Three plantations. Two wishes. One ancient curse.

All her life, Barrie Watson has been a virtual prisoner in the house where she lives with her shut-in mother. When her mother dies, Barrie promises to put some mileage on her stiletto heels. But she finds a new kind of prison at her aunt’s South Carolina plantation instead--a prison guarded by an ancient spirit who long ago cursed one of the three founding families of Watson Island and gave the others magical gifts that became compulsions.

Stuck with the ghosts of a generations-old feud and hunted by forces she cannot see, Barrie must find a way to break free of the family legacy. With the help of sun-kissed Eight Beaufort, who knows what Barrie wants before she knows herself, the last Watson heir starts to unravel her family's twisted secrets. What she finds is dangerous: a love she never expected, a river that turns to fire at midnight, a gorgeous cousin who isn’t what she seems, and very real enemies who want both Eight and Barrie dead.

I loved this incredibly atmospheric Southern Gothic paranormal, filled with mystery, magic, Native American mythology, and an absolutely swoony romance. The quirky characters, the small town Southern setting, the plot…it's all sooooo good.  Barrie is a wonderful main character, who has a gift for finding things.  In fact, when she senses lost things, she has a compulsion to find them (hence the name).  She arrives in Watson's Landing after her mother dies and becomes immersed in a fascinating family that has dark secrets and even ghosts.  She also meets Eight, who has his own gift (by the way, LOVED Eight).  Even though the book takes places within just a few days, maybe a week, it still felt like a slow burn romance.  I know, doesn't sound possible, but it is.  And it is an ADORABLE romance.  I was completely absorbed in the story as Barrie finds out more about her family, her family's past, the gift she has, the gift Eight's family has, and the curse on her father's side of the family.  Suspenseful and romantic, this book exudes Southern charm.  Brilliant!

Posted by:  Pam


  1. I'm excited to read this one, I've heard such great things about it. Swoon romance, quirky characters and a southern setting sounds like my type of book :)

    Great review!

  2. Nice review, I haven't heard of this one but it sounds like something I would like. :)


  3. Just added this one to the TBR! It sounds lovely!

  4. Hmmm I've been kind of on the fence about this one. How was the paranormal element? The romance sounds good. I might have to read it just to meet Eight!

    1. I liked the paranormal element and it was essential to the plot, rather than just extra or pointless, which sometimes happens.

  5. I'm glad you liked this one. I snagged the e-arc, but never got around to it. That cover is just so lovely and it really does sound interesting with the mystery, mythology and romance. Sold. I'll try to make some time for this one.

  6. Glad you loved this one, Pam! I had very high hopes for this book but I found myself disappointed with the story and romance. :/ It was just too boring for me. But I'll still be picking up the second.

  7. Martina Boone is one of the SWEETEST authors I've gotten to interact with (if you're a writer, she runs a First Five Pages Workshop through her blog; if not, she's still real sweet). I picked up Compulsion simply because of that - despite being wary of most PNR these days - but then couldn't buy it that day and was a bit miffed about the first pages. Not sure.

    I didn't know it had Native American mythology! I knew it was a Southern Gothic, though. The family secrets and dark elements were what also really fascinated me. Why is his name Eight? I think he was Four before the title also changed to Compulsion? Must be for something thematic, but I must admit I can't picture myself being like Barrie & Eight! Do you ever sound out the couple's names to see whether they fit as a pair? Sort of like that feeling. But I'd be willing to change my opinion if it's an adorable romance :P. Sounds like this was one of your favorite books! YAY!!! I'm glad you liked it :) and I hope you'll like the next two novels.