REVIEW: Winterkill by Kate A. Boorman

Emmeline knows she’s not supposed to explore the woods outside her settlement. The enemy that wiped out half her people lurks there, attacking at night and keeping them isolated in an unfamiliar land with merciless winters. Living with the shame of her grandmother’s insubordination, Emmeline has learned to keep her head down and her quick tongue silent. When the settlement leader asks for her hand in marriage, it’s an opportunity for Emmeline to wash the family slate clean—even if she has eyes for another. But before she’s forced into an impossible decision, her dreams urge her into the woods, where she uncovers a path she can’t help but follow. The trail leads to a secret that someone in the village will kill to protect. Her grandmother followed the same path and paid the price. If Emmeline isn’t careful, she will be next.
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I received a finished copy of this book before the release date from the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. 
  2.5 of 5 stars. Please read my rating system further below. 
As a die-hard fantasy lover who hadn’t read a fantasy in over a month and a half, reading Winterkill to me seemed like a breath of fresh air, something to pull me back into a genre that I knew well and loved. While I enjoyed Winterkill immensely because it was action-packed, had a strong and interesting premise, and was indeed a fantasy, (which is my favorite genre) I still felt like Winterkill lacked in execution. First of all, the romance, it’s instalove. Not only is the romance instalove, but its forbidden instalove. Never have I enjoyed reading about “instalovey” relationships, but I’ve learned to deal with them and let go of my grudge against them since they are so common and popular in YA. But, I have never, and I mean never, liked forbidden love. Forbidden love is just something that is so overdramatic in my opinion, and a lot of the time, I don’t seem to care for it (even though surprisingly there are rare cases in which I have liked forbidden love). So when I’m about 50 pages into Winterkill and read that Emmeline is already “blushing” from the look that Kane gives her, I was really trying hard not to gag. Besides the instalove, I liked most of the characters, and the fact that Emmeline’s settlement was practically unknown and settled in a place where pretty much no one’s survived (my prediction is that the settlement is probably in modern day Siberia), made me all the more curious about Winterkill and it’s mysteries. I liked how Emmeline was so much like her grandmother, and how cunning she was towards the end of the book. For some reason, I also really liked Brother Stockham, even though he was the villain. I thought that he made a great “villain” and that there was a lot of depth to his character, especially his reason for asking Emmeline’s hand. Overall, Winterkill was a fast-paced and promising fantasy that had me hooked for most of the beginning, lost me in the middle, and had me back at the end. 

My rating system: (I do use half stars.) 
5 - I do not use the 5 star. Not because a book might not be worthy, but because a book is never perfect. 
4 - I loved it! There weren't too many flaws, and I had no trouble getting through it. (A 4 star rating is the highest rating I've ever given a book.) 
3 - I enjoyed the book, but there we're flaws that made me enjoy it less. 
2 - I finished the book, but there were too many flaws for me to enjoy it. 
1 - I could not finish the book, and I probably did not finish it....