First Impression Friday – The Lantern’s Ember by Colleen Houck

Welcome to First Impression Friday! This meme is created by Joe at JW Martin – Storeys of Stories. The rules are:

• Based on this sampling of your current read, give a few impressions and predict what you’ll think by the end.
• Did you think you’d love and ended up hating it? Or did you think you’d hate it and wound up loving it? Or were you exactly right?
• Link back to Storeys of Stories so everyone can enjoy reading all the First Impression Fridays out there!


Title: The Lantern’s Ember by Colleen Houck

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Published: September 11th, 2018

Reading as: Digital eARC

Welcome to a world where nightmarish creatures reign supreme.

Five hundred years ago, Jack made a deal with the devil. It’s difficult for him to remember much about his mortal days. So, he focuses on fulfilling his sentence as a Lantern—one of the watchmen who guard the portals to the Otherworld, a realm crawling with every nightmarish creature imaginable. Jack has spent centuries jumping from town to town, ensuring that nary a mortal—or not-so-mortal—soul slips past him. That is, until he meets beautiful Ember O’Dare.

Seventeen, stubborn, and a natural-born witch, Ember feels a strong pull to the Otherworld. Undeterred by Jack’s warnings, she crosses into the forbidden plane with the help of a mysterious and debonair vampire—and the chase through a dazzling, dangerous world is on. Jack must do everything in his power to get Ember back where she belongs before both the earthly and unearthly worlds descend into chaos. (Goodreads)


I was really excited to get approved for this book from Netgalley. The cover was the first thing that really caught my interest. The black and gold color scheme is very eye catching and the decorated skull really draws your interest. I wish I could find who did the cover art because it is absolutely lovely.

I am currently about 20% into the book and have conflicted feelings about it. On one hand the story itself as a whole is fascinating. I’ve always been interested on Sleepy Hollow inspired things and this book absolutely shouts Sleepy Hollow to me. However, the characters are a little dull and lifeless. I suppose some of them are literally lifeless but it is as if their personalities lack a shine and change willy nilly with whichever direction the plot is going and not because of any concrete reason. They aren’t really characters so much as plot fodder.

Normally I would say that this, because of the characterization, is a plot driven story but I can’t even quite say that. The locations aren’t clear to me and seem to have fuzzy edges. I have a general idea of venues but it is like walking through a fog and I just can’t seem to see them clearly.

Without a doubt I will continue reading this story. Despite my early misgivings I think that the book will really evolve well and look forward to reading the rest of it.


6 thoughts on “First Impression Friday – The Lantern’s Ember by Colleen Houck

      1. That’s a bit sad. It sucks when you’ve got all this expectations in the book and it doesn’t live up to it.


  1. Sounds amazing! The premise is really exciting. Too bad the characters are falling a bit flat for you. Hopefully it all comes together by the end.

    Thanks for playing along with First Impression Friday!

    Liked by 1 person

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