What professional book reviewers are saying . . .
What a spellbinding book you have written here, in prose that is poetry in motion. Everything conspires to weave an enchanting web from which the reader has no wish to escape.
You have masterful use of imagery, cadence, poetic flow, and the essences of our pagan roots all melded together—with a bit of Shakespeare’s use of shipwrecks thrown in for good measure—and the the sea-change you have wrought I think will be in me.
The characters too are each powerful and using the ancient contrasts of sun and moon, and the images of Greek mythology only enhances this: Arethusa, Diogo, Jacinta, Tristão, and each of them in their own way wholly engaging, believable, and hypnotic.
I can’t really think of anything more to say except I have been wholly engrossed; I have read all of your chapters more slowly than is my wont simply because I could not bear to miss a moment of savouring the beauty of your prose, the power of your story, the strength of your imagery, the scents, the sounds, the contrasts … this is just one of those magic books where I want to banish the world and all its cares and interruptions and immerse myself in this heady passion-flower of a book which you have created.
—M.M. Bennetts, book reviewer and author of May 1812 and Of Honest Fame
This involves interwoven themes that you wouldn’t originally think complementary. It is the authors skill that makes them complementary. There are no loose ends, no chunks of story just sitting in space, each character has a purpose and no one just drops out of sight with no explanation. Oh, did I mention this all takes place in an exotic Portuguese setting? And that the author thoughtfully includes an index at the back for those of us far less versed in certain terms used in the book?
—Linda Horne, EbookItReviews.com
This book is filled with a complex yet fluid retelling of two separate myths that have been intricately weaved together in a way that it pulls you head-first into the story. Throughout it all I found myself completely entranced by this, and I had a hard time putting down my Kindle once I got started. Only for the need of sleep did it take me two days to finish. The plot itself is one that is beautifully written and well thought out, though I will admit if you are reading this halfheartedly you may become confused at times. I adore mythology and I really like when authors come up with a creative way to integrate them into their own stories, and I can honestly say that I found this to be completely original and fresh. I was familiar with the story of Tristan and Isolde but not that of Alpheus and Arethusa, and even now that I’ve become familiar with both I can see that they have no true connections. However Lasota managed to pull these two stories together and combine them in such a way that I’ll probably never looked at them the same again. After all the emotions that pulled me back and forth and though I was sad to see it over, the ending was perfect to me as it felt complete.
I really liked the main character Eva. She was strong willed and determined despite her troubled life, and even in the toughest of times she attempted to keep her chin up and keep moving forward. She made mistakes of course but she learned from them. The growth of her character is wonderful and believable. She goes from being a girl who is scared and alone, to a woman who knows exactly who she is and will not allow anyone else to tell her otherwise. Tristan is just as lovely, and he grew just as much as Eva throughout the story. The relationship between them is sweet and yet so frustrating, which is exactly what the characters feel. Diogo was very easy to hate and very easy to be deceived by in the beginning. Overall Lasota did a wonderful job of creating characters that were truly human in their decisions and desires, and the way she wrote the story really gave you a sense of every emotion that coursed through these people.
—Michelle Gilmore, In Libris Veritas
I thoroughly enjoyed the book Artemis Rising. It was well written and entertaining. I couldn’t put my laptop down or read it fast enough. I felt the despair, hope and longing that was described so vividly right along with the main character. I could close my eyes and picture the landscape and the people without even trying…I think men and boys will enjoy it just as much as woman and girls! I have and will continue to recommend this book and look forward to reading more by Cheri Lasota.
Sawcat’s Book Blog
I love a good myth, but this was the first time I’ve come across that of Alpheus and Arethusa. Upon looking up the myth after finishing the book, I was impressed on how well the myth was translated to fit the life of a teen in the turn of the century Azores yet keep the parallels.
Jessica Glen’s MindBucks and Media – Review by Brent Lightwood
Artemis Rising holds us fast in the vortex(t) of an emotional consciousness. In mad throes of desperation, we see Arethusa/ Eva/ Isolde lose sight of what she was doing not just a moment before, and O God we cringe at the thought of her foolishness, her girlishness, we love her for it but oh how it hurts to watch sometimes!!!
N. Gemini Sasson at Historical Novel Review
While it’s easy to get wrapped up in the myth and legend that Lasota has so skillfully laid out here, this book is surprising in both its depth and its message. It gets even more intense as it nears the end. The characters are solid and true. Most of all, Arethusa is a unique heroine of uncommon strength who will have you rooting for her all the way. It’s a love story unlike any other, making Artemis Rising even more memorable.
In this beautifully written first novel, Cheri Lasota pens an epic tale of romance and fate versus free will with a strong female lead, which, I must say, I find very rare in YA. Lasota’s writing style is gorgeous and poetic, but the plot moves at a generous pacing and never gets bogged down by the narrative.
Allorah at The Literary Mind Blender
“An Epic Story That Stimulates Your Intellect and Cannot Be Missed”
“Artemis Rising is a must-read and has the potential to be one of the great classics for this generation and the next.”
Sapphire of Night Owl Reviews
“The mythology and legend in ARTEMIS RISING is interesting and well developed. I enjoyed reading about people and places often not explored by other authors. The past setting explored in this novel in illustrated very poetically and many literary elements such as allegory are used.”
Jen at PageTurners Blog
The romance between Tristão and Eva is done beautifully. First a love that’s forbidden by the paths they’ve chosen and then later simply forbidden by circumstances. You can see in small ways throughout the book how much they love and long for each other.
What authors and readers are saying . . .
“Compelling, original and lyrically written … unlike anything I’ve ever read before.”
—Jessie Harrell, YA Author of Destined
“Artemis Rising left me breathless and spellbound. I wanted to live inside its pages. Lasota’s exquisite writing and enchanting story left me yearning for more.”
—Karen Hooper, YA Author of Tangled Tides
Artemis Rising is an intriguing and complex tale, yet in the hands of author Cheri Lasota, the story flows seamlessly, gathering the reader into a world so real you can smell the bergamot along with Eva, feel the pitching of a storm-tossed ship, and the sweet taste of first love. Yet Eva’s world, Arethusa’s world, is one of magic, a place where themes of ancient myth and religious thought meet, confront, and struggle for supremacy. When Eva is shipwrecked on the Azores Islands off Portugal, she encounters Tristão, the blue-eyed boy who will fight for her against the beguiling but ruthless pursuit of Diogo. Be prepared for shocks, twists, and suspense when you read this story. Also be prepared for the exquisite Portuguese background, its culture, color, and customs. With velvety and powerful prose, Ms. Lasota lets us see, taste, smell, feel, and hear each experience as she guides us through layers of suspense, myth, magic, and romance.
—Alice Lynn, Author of Volunteer for Glory
This story is a complex weave of magic, myth, faith, and love. Arethusa must tread a convoluted path to discovery: discovery of herself and what she wants to believe. Who really loves her? Both Diogo and Tristão say they do, yet each, in his own way, lets her down. What do the myths offer? What do they demand? Tucked away on these gorgeous blue islands, Arethusa puts her childhood behind. She becomes a woman. She makes her own choices in a journey that takes her from adversity to triumph. A journey worth traveling.
—Rebecca Lochlann, Author of The Child of Erinyes Series
This is an engrossing novel (I read the whole in a few days!) in which several strands of myth combine to create a complex yet beautifully simple romance. It is at its highest level an exploration of fundamental philosophical questions—the debate between fate and choice, the nature of love and desire, the tenacious and often dangerous hold of belief on the human psyche. At bottom, and the reason why you will love it, this is a bildungsroman about a girl finding her way to adulthood and a story about two lovers both separated and entwined by their beliefs.
—Alexandra Riley, author of The Fairy Circle
What a story-teller you are. After your atmospheric and intense first chapter, I had to read on, and found myself wholly caught-up in your narrative. The world that you conjure is somehow both immediate and exotic, and is beguiling for that. This is the sort of writing in which it is impossible to discern the workings, the scaffolding and the glue: it is effortless to read, which speaks of careful crafting and polishing, and your setting is convincing without ever once feeling like a history lesson. I felt comfortable in it—so much so, that I forgot about being a reviewer and just became a reader, lost in an engrossing story. I would buy this.
—Louise Galvin, author of Souvenirs
I love how you weave the storyteller’s spell, on a great ocean journey introducing the threads of legend, mythology, setting…and then one by one, the warp and weft of your characters—archetypes all. There is such power in names. I like how you have used them, almost like clothing for your characters.
—Toby Neal, author of Hawaiian Orchid
Jeepers! This is stunning stuff. It reads like one of the classics in its beauty and depth. This is more than just a story; it really is art, but without the pretentiousness so often found in ‘literary fiction’. You make it look so easy and effortless. I’ve gotta say, Diogo is my favourite in this. So real. The whole thing reads like a dream which is unsettling and yet at the same time you don’t want to wake up. Ace!
—Jonathan Quinn, co-author of Palace of Wonder
Marvellous to weave myths into a story so that they feel real. I love all the myths of Greece, Britain … anywhere. They belong to another world and infuse this material misery we so often live in with pure magic. The atmosphere of the story is certainly magical, I felt as if rocking on the boat at the first chapter.
—Loretta Proctor, author of The Crimson Bed
I imagine that anyone who enjoyed Diana Gabaldon’s kind of book would like this one *at least* as much. The depth and truthfulness of the research really shows here.
—Maria Bustillos, author of Dorkismo
Blog Tour Reprints
Featured book on Historical Fiction Authors Cooperative: “Researching the Azores? Cheri Lasota takes us there”
N. Gemini Sasson’s blog: “Imperfect Heroes: Tristan Vazante”
Laurasmagicday: “Secrets of E-book Marketing: Excerpt Trades and Enhanced E-books”
Author Jen Lopez at JLeaLopez.blogspot.com: “Observations on Book Marketing”
Diane Holmes at Pitch-University.com: “Seize Your Epub Power: Test Marketing Your Way to Success”
Noelle Pierce at NoellePierce.com: “The Call of Mythology”
M.M. Bennetts at MMBennetts.com: “Researching the Azores? Cheri Lasota takes us there”
Author Interview by Alice Lynn: “Interview: Cheri Lasota”