Hell Hounds, Newlyweds, and Summoning REVIEWING Frozen

Good morning!

It has been about three years since I reviewed a book in the Cassie Scot series (Madison's Song in 2015), and two years since the last book came out (Kaitlin's Tale in 2016). Now,  I am happy to say that there is a new book coming out and I am here to share my review of the Advanced Reader's Copy! Without further adieu, here is Cassie Scot #7.

Frozen: A ParaNormal Mystery

Author: Christine Amsden
Publication: 2018
Genre: Fantasy, Mystery, Paranormal


Apparently, life doesn’t end when you get married.
When a couple freezes to death on a fifty degree day, Cassie is called in to investigate. The couple ran a daycare out of their home, making preschoolers the key witnesses and even the prime suspects.

Two of those preschoolers are Cassie’s youngest siblings, suggesting conditions at home are worse than she feared. As Cassie struggles to care for her family, she must face the truth about her mother’s slide into depression, which seems to be taking the entire town with it.

Then Cassie, too, is attacked by the supernatural cold. She has to think fast to survive, and her actions cause a rift between her and her husband.

No, life doesn’t end after marriage. All hell can break loose at any time.


Frozen is the seventh book in the Cassie Scot series. It builds upon the happenings of each of the last six books, which is to be expected. If you haven't read the series, I really encourage you to do so. The seamless movement from book to book is truly exceptional. One of the strengths of the series is how well all the details connect and how each book ends up with consequences that show up later on. This may seem like a given, but many series just have episodic type approaches. You have the same characters, they do something new, and then repeat the cycle, but never interweaving the story. This series is exemplary in terms of interconnection. Also, the characters actually grow, without losing themselves along the way. Cassie is still amazing, Evan is still disliked and sometimes infuriating, but lovable, and the little town of Eagle Rock is just as magical as ever. 

Yes, we do have more magic. One of the best things about the series is that the magic has been well contained as far as rules go, while still upping the stakes and showing new aspects. This may change after this book though, if we have more coming (we have to have at LEAST ONE MORE COMING). There seems to be an increasing amount of magic creeping around and it isn't making things better for people. It may also have massive implications if we do get a new book following this one. 

The main points of conflict in this book are as follows: Scot family drama, dislike of Evan Blackwood, the challenges of being a newlywed in a world of magic, the challenges of being a new parent, the effects of magic and its spread, mysterious deaths, and the appearance of new paranormal beings. This list probably makes it seem like there is a lot going on, but it is so masterfully handled within the book. The copy I have is about 219 pages, so this is not a massive book, but each conflict point is embedded very well with all the others and makes it so that there is a great balance between them all. We start with immediate Scot family trouble, then move into the mysterious deaths, which moves us into magic trouble and then the newlywed trouble, which then leads into parenting and more family troubles, and so on, with layer after layer being simultaneously stacked on and peeled back until we finally realize what in the world is going on. The conflicts while seemingly very different are all connected with little vines we follow until we finally hit the roots. The greatest strength of this book, after the characters, is definitely the pacing. Things are revealed gradually, but they don't drag. You're also not rushed through the mystery, so you have time to think about what might be going on, without having to wait too long for new pieces. 

I don't want to give away too much, because there is a lot of buildup from previous books that I don't want to ruin if anyone wants to start the series. I highly recommend it. This series is very well crafted. The paranormal beings like vampires and werewolves have been very well handled over the course of each book. Neither is overly glamorized, they all present their own troubles, and they are approached very deliberately and are distinct from one another. The fact that Eagle Rock is a mixed town as far as normal and paranormal beings go makes for a lot of tension among its inhabitants, which is highly intriguing. Book seven also has a wide cast that has come together over the course of several novels, so it is interesting to have "the gang" back again to tackle the new circumstances occurring in town.

As the synopsis says, the police come across a young couple who have been frozen. The weather in the area does not reflect a possibility for that. However, ice manipulation is not a known gift or ability, which adds to the confusion of how such a thing could occur. The truth is actually really interesting because the implications could be crazy. It will change magic and the potential of magic, which might mean creating new dangers not yet faced by magic folk. This book has presented one of the biggest cliffhangers yet, and it is already driving me crazy. I need the next book, or at least an explicit promise for another to come very soon. 

Christine Amsden's Frozen receives a Lone Star Rating of: 

I devoured this book in just a few sittings, because I was so engrossed in it. When I had to stop reading, to do dishes or laundry, my brain was still trying to piece together what would be causing all the trouble in the book. I was mulling it over, trying to piece things together with what little knowledge of how magic works in this world that I had from the previous books. I missed Cassie more than I realized and it was nice to be back with her again. I had also missed Evan and I was glad he was still so relevant and not delegated as a generic support character. He was also at the forefront of things so it was nice to have him working with Cassie and butting heads with her again. Their interactions have always been one of my favorite things about the series. They are really fun characters. I want and need more of them. 

The e-book of Frozen is already available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The audiobook does not yet have a release date. If you want a physical copy like me, the print release is July 15th! Purchase links for Frozen, as well as for every other book in the series, are listed below. Audible audiobooks are available for previous books in the series for all you audiobook lovers who need a new book to listen to. This series has been phenomenal and I highly recommend it. It has easily become one of my favorites.  

The first chapter can be read on Christine's website, linked below. If you would like to get more news on her books, all her social media is also provided following her bio. If nothing else, PLEASE share this review or her website on your social media, send it to someone you know who likes mysteries and fantasy, or drop a link in online reading groups. Even if the genre isn't your thing, it is important for us readers to help authors get word out about their work, especially if it is good. I wouldn't ask if I thought the book was not worth reading! Above all when it comes to my reviews, I am honest, regardless of if I'm given a book free to review, or I buy it or check it out from a library. How I get it doesn't matter to me when it comes to reviews. I'm not fake and I hope never to be, so I mean it genuinely when I ask for you to share this review, book and series around the web please.  

Thanks again for reading a review here at The Real World According to Sam! Come back THIS THURSDAY, May 31st, to see a guest post from Christine as she continues her virtual book tour for Frozen. 

My reviews of each of the Cassie Scot books except Kaitlin's Tale are linked here, as well as previous guest posts done for the series: 

About the Author

Christine Amsden has been writing fantasy and science fiction for as long as she can remember. She loves to write and it is her dream that others will be inspired by this love and by her stories. Speculative fiction is fun, magical, and imaginative but great speculative fiction is about real people defining themselves through extraordinary situations. Christine writes primarily about people and relationships, and it is in this way that she strives to make science fiction and fantasy meaningful for everyone.

At the age of 16, Christine was diagnosed with Stargardt’s Disease, which scars the retina and causes a loss of central vision. She is now legally blind, but has not let this slow her down or get in the way of her dreams.
Christine currently lives in the Kansas City area with her husband, Austin, who has been her biggest fan and the key to her success. In addition to being a writer, she's a mom and freelance editor.

Social Media Links:
· Blog

Buy Links


Print Release: July 15, 2018
Audiobook Release: TBA

The Cassie Scot Series

Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective (Cassie Scot Book One)

Secrets and Lies (Cassie Scot Book Two)

Mind Games (Cassie Scot Book 3)

Stolen Dreams (Cassie Scot Book 4)

Madison's Song (Cassie Scot Book 5)

Kaitlin’s Tale (Cassie Scot Book 6)


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