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Ordeal by T. K. Varenko
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Ordeal

by T. K. Varenko

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Ordeal by T.K. Varenko is a novel told in verse. It's the story of a complicated relationship between Alice and Derek. Alice and Derek are both loners. They are mysteriously drawn to each other. When Alice starts having strange dreams she realized that she and Derek must have known each other in another life. Derek, a vampire, wants Alice. He doesn't care about the consequences he'll have to face for breaking the law and being with a human. Complications come at them from all sides.Derek and Alice have to find a way to be together before they are doomed to spend an eternity apart.
I don't have a lot of experience with reading books in verse but I found this book enjoyable. T.K. Verenko weaves an interesting tale of two star crossed lovers. Although I'm a sucker for love stories I was happy to discover that this one is different from other stories out there. It's full of heartache, deceit, and true love. ( )
  mt256 | Jul 26, 2011 |
Beautiful and Rare
I read Ordeal by T. K. Varenko not just once, but twice! I should probably begin by saying that I was more than a little skeptical about the chances of me liking this book when I first picked it up. I am not very familiar with poetic reads and also not particularly a fan of the paranormal genre. I did feel however that this book deserved a chance if only because the combination the author has managed to put together in it is powerful and original, not something that has been done many times before as far as I am aware.
Contrary to my predictions, I was completely hooked by Alice/Luella (beautiful name btw) and Derek’s story from beginning to end. The whole reason I read the book a second time was that the first time I was so eager to find out what would ultimately happen to the star-crossed lovers that I pretty much devoured the book in a little over three hours! The second read was an opportunity to better savor the author’s extremely enthralling use of language and setting. I did love this story. It has a Romeo & Juliet flavored sense of impending doom throughout and puts our characters through a myriad of challenges in their quest for true love that will take your breath away. I loved being able to relate to these characters, to their feelings and emotions as they uncover the truth about their undeniable connection, and also the sense of irony as we see Derek’s and Luella’s roles reversed in different lifetimes.
If there was anything about this book that wasn’t perfect for me, it was the fact that as much as I was drawn by the originality of the poetry, this device was at times manifestly limiting in terms of the author’s ability to dive deeper into the characters’ pasts and therefore our ability to know them better. The style was beautiful but at times the depth of the story suffered as a result.
All things considered however, I congratulate the author on this rare achievement of a book and I would definitely recommend “Ordeal” to those of you hoping to experience something new in the paranormal genre. Your will not regret giving this book a chance!
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review. I am in no way compensated for any reviews that I write. ( )
  firesidereader | Jul 14, 2011 |
Ordeal by T.K. Varenko surprised me because I was expecting the typical Twilight-like story given a little uniqueness by being set to poetic verse. At first, that assumption seemed correct. Normal girl has dreams about vampire boy and then vampire boy saves her life. The two fall in love, etc. That comparison soon drops off and the story takes off in a new and interesting direction.

Alice has always felt like she didn't fit in and life seems to have a 'been there, done that' type of feel to it. The only bit of adventure that she enjoys are her dreams of Derek, a handsome guy that she feels an instant connection to. She soon learns that Derek is real and that he feels as strongly for her as she does for him. In fact, his feelings are so strong that he decided not to kill her. Yep, Derek is a vampire... but don't start thinking of Bella and Edward yet. Derek and Alice have a history that the Twilight duo can't even come close to equaling and the story soon becomes very interesting when we learn that there's a reason for Alice to feel like she's lived through life before. Alice isn't just a person; she's a prison made of flesh, designed specifically for punishment. As Alice and Derek investigate the mystery of both their relationship and the life of a powerful vampire queen, they find themselves on a path that appears to end with the inevitable death of one or both of them.

I was intrigued and dismayed at the idea of a whole story being written as poetry and wasn't sure how it would work out. I'll admit the first couple of pages were a little challenging because I'm not really a poetry fan and the rhythm of the story took a little getting used to. After those first few pages, though, the poetry didn't really call that much attention to itself. The author has a way with words and this unique style of storytelling didn't get in the way of the actual story at all. As far the story itself, things pick up significantly once we get into the actual meat of the plot and it becomes more than just Alice and Derek being in love with each other. Still, focus on their relationship couldn't be avoided because their love is an integral part of the story.

How can you tell if someone is really in love with you? How can you tell if you're really in love with someone? Ordeal puts our two lovers through the ultimate test, resulting in an interesting and exciting story that might have you looking at poetry in a whole new way. ( )
  DarkWyrm | Oct 26, 2010 |
My Review: Let me tell you how much I loved this book of varied poetry. It wasn't quite Poe, but it wasn't your run of the mill lovey-dovey stuff either. I absolutely loved this and will definitely read it again.

Anyone who enjoys poetry needs to have this book.

RATING: ♥♥♥♥♥

Pages: 212
Softcover

Review copy of this book provided by the author/publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. In no way did the provision of the book affect the outcome of my review. ( )
  MysteeB | Oct 5, 2010 |
Poetry is not a normal genre for me, but seeing that this one was of a paranormal romance variety, I wanted to give it a try. My curiosity about how a poem could be written like a novel and be about vampires, led me to this book. Since this is not my normal style of book, this is not a normal review for me, not exactly sure I want to go about it the way I normally would. So I will break it down in parts.

The characters:
- Alice/Luella started out thinking she was just an average out of place, awkward kid only to find out that she was really very different from everyone around her. She was allowed to see her true past life as a Royal from the Vampire realm and she was being punished to live a life as a human for a crime against the royal family, her own family. *Not sure why, but I did have a difficult time (for the most part) finding a connection with her even though in the end I very much enjoyed her humanity showing through.
- Derek saw her from a distance, at first as human prey, then something inside of him stopped him from his vampire instincts of draining her. Finding out that at one time she was his one true love and that he had started out as the human while she was the vampire. Suppressed memories couldn’t stop him from knowing what he wanted. *Truly enjoyed this character and all his facets, would have liked more of his side of the story.

The Story line:
- Take two loves who are willing to do anything for each other and prove it over and over again by placing a curse on them to repeat it all till something is done differently. Great story concept and following the path as it was laid out was suspenseful and fresh.

The Poetry:
- While I am not well acquainted with poetry, this one was easy to read, understand and follow. There were a few stanza’s that felt awkward or like they were stretching the rhyming limits, but over all this basic four line verse did well to tell the story of Alice/Luella and Derek. My only complaint is that (in my opinion) following the metric form limited the story too much. At times it seemed to concentrate more on the rhyme of the verse than the content. This story could be more, the characters could be deeper, the story could be more intense. This balance between form and content will work for some and has shown me a new format that I might be willing to look for in the future. ( )
  onyx95 | Sep 29, 2010 |
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