The Alchemy of Forever (Incarnation #1)
by Avery Williams
Published January 3rd 2012
After spending six hundred years on Earth, Seraphina Ames has seen it all. Eternal life provides her with the world's riches but at a very high price: innocent lives. Centuries ago, her boyfriend, Cyrus, discovered a method of alchemy that allows them to take the bodies of other humans from jumping from one vessel to the next, ending the human's life in the process. No longer able to bear the guilt of what she's done, Sera escapes from Cyrus and vows to never kill again.
Then sixteen-year old Kailey Morgan gets into a horrific car accident right in front of her, and Sera accidentally takes over her body while trying to save her. For the first time, Sera finds herself enjoying the life of the person she's inhabiting--and falling in love with the boy who lives next door. But Cyrus will stop at nothing until she's his again, and every moment she stays, she's putting herself and the people she's grown to care about in danger. Will Sera have to give up the one thing that's eluded her for centuries: true love?
Seraphina, the heroine, is an amazing character. She's soft and feminine, but strong, and I immediately fell in love with her personality. Never once did I feel that she was murderous, even though she used the bodies of others to live her very long life. I always empathized with her and hoped she found away from Cyrus. I hated Cyrus, everything about him and I wondered how she endured so many years with him. The author creates the perfect abusive, controlling, and manipulative relationship and the need for Sera to escape his hold.
The best thing about this book is how it is written. It is one of the most eloquent books I have read in my life. Every scene and word on every page is filled with purpose, and the entire work is masterfully crafted. It moves through the story seamlessly and though their is minimal action taking place, the need to read forward is still prevalent. The downfall of this book was the ending. I only say that because I am partial to happy endings for the characters, without giving away spoilers, Sera did not receive the happy life I hoped she would. Hopefully in the next book she does.