Cover Image: Serpent Rising

Serpent Rising

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Member Reviews

DNF 37%
This book fell flat for me, the dialouge was boring and wierd. The characters were meh, i mean i enjoyed the geeky friend, but the main character were a pain.

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I received a free digital copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Great plot! I love the pacing. It is very well written

Thank you kindly to the author, the publisher, and NetGalley for this review copy.

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this was a really unique read, I really enjoyed reading this book. The characters were great and I really liked the world that was built. It was a fun mystery.

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At it's heart Serpent Rising is a quest. Serena Mendez, a 21 year old with PTSD stemming from an incident in her childhood, goes on a far-flung journey first to revisit her aunt and go back to the site of her trauma. Serena and her friend Bryson have no idea that a simple road trip will become much, much bigger. There is a lot of mysticism and conspiracy theories, suspense and fast moving action. I enjoyed the book and saw some similiarities to books like the DaVinci Code. Good suspense and moved well, except in a few places where it got a little bogged down in deep background. I found it was a good escape from the pandemic and the real world.

(Review based on complimentary Advance Reader copy received as a giveaway through the LibraryThing Early Reviewer program.)

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When I first started reading, I was discouraged and decided to put it down. I had a feeling I just wasn't in the right mood for this type of story. Now that I had a chance to go back and read, I'm so glad I gave it another chance. I absolutely fell in love with the story! I found myself re-reading a few paragraphs because I really loved the delivery. The characters were interesting, and I couldn't put it down once I got into it. I'll definitely be watching out for more by Victor Acquista in the future!

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I found it engrossing and quite enjoyable. Good world building and character development.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine

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Different. If you enjoy a bit of sci fi and fantasy this is the book for you. The writing is solid and the story is pretty entertaining. Check it out. It had some really good moments. Happy reading!

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The author obviously did a lot of research for this book - and it shows! I thought the book was very well thought out and planned. To me, the plot itself was the best part. I was constantly questioning things and wondering where the story was going to go.

My main concern was that I didn’t feel connected to the characters. I thought Bryson was quirky, but I would’ve liked a lot more depth. I felt like their words were very factual and less natural. Of course, there is a lot of information needed in this book, so it’s easy to understand why.

If you like conspiracy theories and mysteries, this would be a good book for you!

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We meet Serena Mendez, a young woman suffering from PTSD after a childhood trauma. Her therapist recommends that she addresses her fears, she takes a car ride with her friend and fellow conspiracy theorist Bryson Reynolds. That simple car trip turns into a global journey that combines personal and spiritual exploration with an old-fashioned chase. Who is chasing Serena, and why? And what will Serena learn about herself along the way?

The premise seemed interesting, but the story was quickly overwhelmed by the long passages describing spiritual subjects and locations. It felt more like a mysticism textbook than fiction. The plot was hard to follow through the concept discussions. Characters were not developed, which made it difficult to care about what happened to Serena and Bryson. The ending felt slapped together, leaving plot points unanswered or providing thin, unsatisfying resolutions to the rest.

I cannot recommend this book to other readers, even those who enjoy mysticism and conspiracy theories.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publishing house for proving me a copy in exchange for my honest review.

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I’m not sure where to start this review, to be honest, so I’ll just jump right in. This felt more like a non fiction, conspiracy theory, mysticism type of read. Connecting with the characters felt impossible because there was just so much information.

The writing seemed very long - winded. It was obvious that the author cared more for the places and facts than making his characters engaging.. The story kinda dragged on and on. I was drawn in by the synopsis but I felt like Serena‘s story was almost a sub-plot.

I just couldn’t connect with this one. I give Serpent Rising 2 stars.

All of my thanks to Netgalley and BHC Press for allowing me the opportunity to read this arc in exchange for an honest review.

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What bothered me from the start was the way in which the dialogues are constructed. This is confirmed on the whole story: the explanations are made in a professorial style.

Let's move on to the plot: Serena's quest really begins when her therapist advises her to face her demons. Indeed, she spent her whole life avoiding doing so, preferring to hide behind her PTSD. She declares many times in the history that she suffers from it and even if I understand that it is a handicap, I found that it is as easy as when a person who makes spelling mistakes declares to be dyslexic. I hate it!

Objectively, this is quite the kind of adventure that I like to read. Serpent rising had everything on paper to please me.


Serena's initiation process left me insensitive. It is told very factually, which prevents any empathy. I felt like I was reading travel notes, not living it. It is the same for the mythologies that color this trip. Usually, I love to discover how the authors shape them to explain their intrigue. Except that there, we do not feel any stake. I feel frustration and a certain annoyance because this element could have brought up this first volume in my esteem.

Despite everything, I wanted to see where the author was taking me. I was interested in the “thriller” aspect which is carried by Bryson. Serena is fully immersed in a spiritual quest while Bryson symbolizes the down-to-earth side of the action. So it was the part that concerned him that made me force myself not to abandon this reading.

The end of the novel sees the heroes gathered. Thus, the stakes of the story are finally explained to us but that is not enough to interest me sufficiently afterwards. Unfortunately. I completely missed the universe proposed by Victor Acquista .

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At first I wasn't so sure about the book. The first couple of pages felt like a show of big words. But it didn't take long for me to get pulled into the story and eventually the suspense kept me reading to find out what would happen next. I enjoyed Serena's journey from troubled young woman to one who was much stronger in her abilities and her own strength. It was nice she had a friend like Bryson, although as the story goes along the reader begins to wonder if something bigger than the two of them brought them together.

I will definitely recommend this to my older teens and up.

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It was an interesting ride through some of the most ancient cultures of the world. I enjoyed the blend of conspiracy theories that drove this world. The action was a bit short, but the descriptions of Serena's experiences pulled you along.

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Serpent Rising is the story about Serena Mendez, a 21 year old girl who hasn't been the same ever since her great aunt left her alone in a cave when she was ten. Now, to overcome this trauma, she is encouraged to go visit her great aunt, getting herself into a world full of conspiracy theories becoming true.

Okay, so that was a lot. I really, truly wanted to like this book. When I first read the synopsis, I was immediately attracted to it, but it was definitely not my thing.

I believe there are two kinds of books that I end up not liking: books that are simply bad, and books that are not bad, but are just not for me. I think this one is a second kind type of book. Therefore, I do recommend giving it a chance, but I just really didn't like it.

The reason why I didn't like it is because there is way more objective information than fictional story. What I mean by this is that I felt like I was reading a book about different cultures and conspiracies more than a fictional story per se. Probably, because of this, I just didn't feel any connection with the characters, because even them spoke as if they were giving a long history lesson. I found it kind of boring and way too long, like half of the book was not necessary.

But as I said before, I think this book does have an audience and could totally work for many other people, just not for me.

Thanks to Netgalley and BHC Press for the e-arc in exchange for an honest review.

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Will you ever get over the trauma from your youth? Serena is having nightmares and is convinced that she will never amount to anything. So when her friend Bryon suggests that it is time to find her great aunt and to make peace with what happened when she visited. But she is afraid and when Bryon offers to come with she decides that it is the right time to get it over with. But the find that her aunt has died and that there is something strange going on and they are both in danger. But before they can figure out anymore it is time to go back home but Serena will need to take the next part of the journey on her own so that she can find the answers that she needs. But why has she been chosen as a Lightbringer? Will Serena be able to follow all the teachings to reach her full powers and why is everyone after her?
She will need to travel to India first to unlock her first powers but just as she is finding her place she is taken but she doesn't know if she can trust the man that has taken her but Bryon gives her the courage to carry on and she lands up in Australia but she is hurt and she escapes in time again. She is now in Cairo for the next stage of her quest but the others aren't far behind and this time she almost doesn't make it.
Bryon is having major problems at home as the FBI has found where he is living and they think that they have him caught but Bryon isn't about to allow that to happen. He needs to figure out who he can trust and what his father was really doing when he died. He worries about Serena but he knows that they will be together again soon.
When they do eventually meet do they realize that their feelings have changed and that they both want me. But can they allow themselves this time together without someone finding them? Where will this quest lead them to next and will they have luck on their side again? Will Serena reach her full powers before it is too late? Will everything become clearer? A good thrilling read. I was lucky enough to receive a copy via Netgalley & the publishing house in exchange for my honest review.

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I could not put down Acquista's novel. I enjoyed traveling the world with Serena. It's a fast paced thriller that everyone would enjoy. The characters were well developed and I felt like I was there. It's definitely a well written novel.

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This was a great quarantine read. Following Serena around the world was just what this wandering soul needed to escape our current lockdown. The author assumes his audience has some knowledge of myths, nature lore, ancient history, etc but connects the dots where needed. A modern day heroine discovering her own inner strength is also refreshing. There are some questions left unanswered about Serena's family but they may come out in following books.

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