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I Chose to Die (Siren Suicides #1)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  254 Ratings  ·  78 Reviews
On a rainy September morning that just so happens to be her sixteenth birthday, Ailen Bright, a chicken-legged, straw-haired teenager, decides to commit suicide via drowning in the family bathtub. The ornate marble tub, adhering to her abusive father's love for anything expensive and Italian, is decorated by five sirens - who seemingly help her escape the house when her fa ...more
Paperback, 1, 266 pages
Published August 5th 2013 by Ksenia Anske
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Nov 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantansy, fiction
I received this book free from Amazon in an author promotion. That was probably a year or so ago. It "talked" to the author on Twitter mostly asking about her bicycle. I have followed her on Google plus and saw excerpts from her book readings and signings. She is a bit quirky, showing up for readings and signings dressed as a ballerina. Anske reminds me a bit of Carol Kane in Scrooged, hopefully without the slapping and the quick kick. She is from Russia and moved to the US in 1998 and learned E ...more
Adrian Fridge
Aug 24, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy, ya-fiction
The premise of this story is anti-suicide. However, the fantasy in this fiction ruins a lot of the empathy factor.

Ailen Bright is naive, resentful, and self-destructive. She's the epitome of teenage angst, and we meet her at her darkest hour: she decides suicide is her best option in the face of an abusive, misogynist father and a mother who killed herself and left Ailen alone with him. The only silver lining is Ailen's best friend, Hunter, and her inanimate siren sisters who decorate the bathtu
JD Estrada
Nov 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
I chose to die is the first novel by Ksenia Anske and definitely piques my interest in regards to the rest of this series and her other work. That said, I think I can easily say that this book has four aspects for me that I enjoy in varying degrees.

1. The concept. The idea that is the foundation of the Siren Suicides is downright brilliant. A young girl makes a rash decision and the result is that something that she daydreamed about becomes a reality when she becomes a siren. The process isn't
Lauryn April
Oct 10, 2013 rated it liked it
I have somewhat of a love-hate relationship with this book. Ksenia Anske definitely has some talent. She can write beautifully descriptive scenes, and has created unique characters with a storyline that felt new and different. However, too heavy of descriptions weighed down the plot, making this book tough to get through.

Ailen Bright is a rather damaged character. Her mother is gone, her father is abusive, and she doesn’t want to live anymore. I thought Anske handled Ailen’s depression and her f
Nov 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: paranormal, mythology
When Ailen tries to commit suicide in her father’s siren-decorated bathtub, she wakes up in a world where those sirens are real. It’s all a near-death experience, a mere hallucination, or so she thinks—until she runs away from home and attempts suicide again, selling her soul in return for becoming a sister siren.

I wasn’t sure if this was going to be a fantasy book, or a social issues book. It’s a blend of both, really. This was a deliciously dark read, and I was hooked from the beginning. The d
Cassandra (Thebookishcrypt)
*Copy provided in exchange for an honest review*

"On the brink of death, I want to live like never before."

This book follows Ailen, a 16 year old who is not happy with life. Since making the decision to commit suicide, her life is thrown upside down and she starts uncovering things along the way. I wasn't a fan of her character most of the time. How she reacts to her father... I wanted to slap some sense into her!! At times she had the backbone I crave in a main character but most of the time, it
M.C. O'Neill
Sep 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to read Siren Suicides' second draft, back when it was one big volume. The majority of the warts had been eliminated at this point. I re-read the final release.

Most criticism for this book is in regard to the writing. Yes, it is florid, and yes, it is almost disorienting in the gold release.

It should be. It really helps set the tone for this "undead" world in which Ailen exists. Ethereal and dreamlike and sad.

I think Anske hit the nail on the head by choosing to employ such l
Deyanira Villalta
Aug 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
I was introduced to Siren Suicides about the same time I met the author via Google+. I was privileged enough to start reading while she was still writing it. The evolution from one book to a trilogy has been exciting to watch.

I have enjoyed the story of the main character as I have never read a book quite like this. The story line is original and moves at a good pace. Looking forward to finishing Book#2 and starting Book#3.
Rachel Barnard
Sep 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
It all starts with a death wish, hope for paternal love, and Ailen wanting to get revenge on her father for what he did to her and her mom. Ailen Bright was the daughter that was supposed to be a son. She was the woman who was a weak creature needing to be controlled lest she decide to charm off men’s pants and make them do stupid crap (according to her father).

Ailen turns into a Siren, the embodiment of an otherworldly thing that feeds off men’s souls, but she is not alone in this world. She wa
Mihaela Mateescu
Jun 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Half way through Chapter 14 of Ksenia Anske’s Siren Suicides, and I just now decide to make some notes. I started it yesterday, and only abandoned it to selfishly write my own story. Well, that’s not entirely true. The truth is that, after reading her entire blog, the articles about reading, writing, editing, marketing – and loving those – I was a bit afraid that I wouldn’t like her actual novel and that I wouldn’t know how to say that appropriately. I hate being disappointed in someone’s writin ...more
N.K. Layne
I can't give this book anything less than three stars because at times I was blown away. During the first quarter of the book, when the MC attempts and commits suicide I was immersed in this book. This introduction wasn't shock value. It was a well written, emotionally potent, and complex opening that I really connected with. There were some additional moments in the body of the book that were written just as well, and these scenes indicate that this book could have been amazing.

If it had the t
Aug 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Well, i wasn't sure about writing the review cause i gave this book just 3 stars (for me it's pretty much but...) So i really hope our dear author won't have any bad emotions if she would read my poor text.

I started "I chose to die" a month ago and really had some hard time with it. On the one hand, i really love the style of the author and her ideas as well. The plot of the story is so fascinating and you have such a high hopes when you open the book.
On the other hand, i didn't quite believe i
Dec 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Siren Suicides is an interested trilogy and I’m glad I read it. Ksenia Anske has a very important message for her readers and I liked that. I gave it 4 stars because there are a few things that made me lift my eyebrows during reading, but let’s just take things from the beginning.

Ailen’s story starts really great since she is locked in her bathroom, trying to end her life. Those first chapters, have really stayed in my mind and pulled me in the story right away.

Ailen is an interesting character
Barb Taub
Sep 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
If I had to rate this book just on content alone, I might make the rating lower. The abusive father comes across as a flat, opaque, almost omniscient figure. But that is probably just what he would seem to the daughter he's tortured all of her life. Any last minute reconciliation or even understanding would have rung false. My biggest question -- the identity and motivation of the other sirens -- is going to keep me looking for sequels. Because frankly, although more editing could have tightened ...more
Cyd Madsen
Sep 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: literary
A first book by a twitter phenomenon with an astonishing command of a language she's mastered in just a little over 10 years. I've never stopped to underline a beautiful passage of writing in the first book of a budding author, but I did so many times with this book. Absolutely gorgeous use of language and some moments that made my heart stop. That said...

The book could have used some tightening. I think. She is wandering into fantasy areas not often explored, and that requires walking the reade
James Rook
Sep 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It took me way too long to read this book (my fault, not the author's). Though my spare time was sparse, I really enjoyed regularly going back to this story when I could sneak away. The world was so distinct and boiled down to the true gems of real characters that it made it easy for me to get right back into the story and immediately reconnect with the characters.

While English is not Ksenia's native language, I think it really gave her an advantage when writing "I Chose to Die". She never takes
Aaron Browder
Aug 20, 2013 rated it it was ok
This is a refreshingly genuine fantasy story about AND by a girl who has lived through childhood domestic abuse. Ailen's journey is so reminiscent of Ksenia Anske's own, I often found myself mistakenly calling the character "Ksenia". Fair warning, this book does get very dark, but that's to be expected from a story that opens with the main character attempting suicide.

Ailen and her partner in crime Hunter are effortlessly loveable, and have gotten themselves caught up in an adventure that never
It's an eery story. And I feel weird while reading it. It almost feels as if I died with the siren and I'm watching her from the dead. I wonder what she's going to do next with her newfound abilities. What the siren does for a majority of the time is run away. She entrances people here and there. Then deals with the conflicts of a siren hunter and siren sisters. On top of all that a love relationship surfaces, but there is little time to act upon it. This is a very good story for teens and anyon ...more
Marina Ha
Sep 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really liked how the book started - I couldn't put it down. It made me recall the days of reading Harry Potter books in the wee hours of the morning. When I reached the half point, I felt that the story was no longer tight, but thankfully it picked up toward the end.

After finishing the book I felt that there were too many loose ends, which is good, because I am on to reading Book 2, but is unsatisfying if I choose to read just the first book.

I would have to agree with an earlier reviewer that
Feb 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
I've been following Ksenia Anske on Twitter for a while now and I've always enjoyed her tweets about writing. so I decided more out of curiosity than anything to try this book. and I'm so glad I did.

The book starts with Ailen Bright trying to commit suicide on her sixteenth birthday, in a desperate attempt to escape her abusive father. Although the opening is dark, the story actually morphs into a lively and imaginative tale as Ailen's suicide attempt has very unforeseen consequences. Ksenia wea
Aug 28, 2013 rated it liked it
I thought the book was good. I liked the concept of a story about sirens and siren hunters. I liked the characters. Ailen was a little too whiny, and that was annoying at times, but can you really blame her after all she had to go through even before turning into a siren? I liked the relationship between her and Hunter, and I didn't even put two and two together about his name until somebody pointed it out. I really hated her dad, but you're supposed to, so that's good. He was a very good villai ...more
I decided to read this trilogy because I found interesting the author's very public approach to writing, revising and self-publishing. I'm glad I did.

Anske meets her mark, in that she effectively addresses suicide and mental health with straightforwardness and honesty. The story is compelling, and I enjoy the Greek mythology aspects. However, this could have used another round or two of editing. I got the sense that so much more could have been trimmed to make the story tighter and more readable
Lloyd Thompson
Sep 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I CHOSE TO DIE, the first book in Ksenia Anske's SIREN SUICIDES series, was such a non-stop rush, I literally could not put it down—I was completely sucked in, and had to see what was going to happen next!
Written in the real-time constant flow of Ailen Bright's sixteenth birthday day, I CHOSE TO DIE offers a thrilling and quite unique portrayal of mythological sirens. Plop them in the water of the modern world, and get ready to hit the ground running!
I can't wait to read the next two books and
Madeline Courtney
Dec 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
OMIGOSH. This book was so awesome. The character really portrays how it feels to be in a depressing world you can't escape from. Ailen Bright made me realize I'm not the only one going through terrible things at home and that I must fight on, because if I don't, it can get much worse.

I am starting MY SISTERS IN DEATH tonight. I am very interested to see what is going to happen between Hunter and Ailen.
Sep 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Tormented protagonist seeks her own death and is assisted by otherworldly sirens. She finds she is still tormented by personal demons after her death, and is hunted by her father and her lover all over Seattle and Puget Sound. Read from a copy sent to me by the author (who is delightful on Twitter).
Aug 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
This story had a choke hold on me from the beginning. I didn't want to put it down. The characters are delightful, both tortured and beautifully naive. There were times when I had to set my Kindle down to yell at some of the decisions that Ailen and Hunter were making. All in all I'm very pleased to have read it and can't wait to dig into the next two books in the series.
Jul 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful writing

Really gorgeously written. Ksenia particularly excels at inner monologues and description. The ending felt quite rushed, but other than that I very much enjoyed this book.
Apr 11, 2014 marked it as to-read
Shelves: guest
Author's guest post at my blog:
Laura Chisnall
Sep 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read this in less than half a day and I'd been waiting for months. Definitely worth the wait.
Shane Kuhn
Mar 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
A fantastic voice. Depth and passion and beautiful angst. Ksenia is very talented and relevant.
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Ksenia Anske was born in Moscow, Russia, and came to the US in 1998. She is the author of dark fantasy short fiction and 7 novels, and the winner of Amtrak Residency Program 2015. Her novel Rosehead won Honorary Mention in the YA Category in the Indie Ebook Award 2016. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, and when she’s not reading, she’s scaring other writers into writing or terrifying unsuspec ...more
More about Ksenia Anske

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“All I can register of these people is a pattern of blur, one string of masks instead of faces. Atonal, solid, boring. They look like fish, crowded by the glass of a gigantic aquarium, hoping you’ll feed them, give them a morsel of something special that will make them forget their misery for a minute” 4 likes
“whenever Papa leaves on a boat trip, we get stoned in my bathroom. Did I mention it’s the only room in the house that can be locked? It also has a fan and a window. I don’t know what my father would do if he found out that I smoke weed. Last night, it came close; way too close. We were blowing smoke rings when Hunter pointed at one of the marble sirens, tracing her open mouth with his finger over and over again. By then, we’d shared a couple of joints. “Have” 0 likes
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