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Goodreads Choice Award
Nominee for Best Romance (2018)
They came to earth—Pestilence, War, Famine, Death—four horsemen riding their screaming steeds, racing to the corners of the world. Four horsemen with the power to destroy all of humanity. They came to earth, and they came to end us all.

When Pestilence comes for Sara Burn’s town, one thing is certain: everyone she knows and loves is marked for death. Unless, of course, the angelic-looking horseman is stopped, which is exactly what Sara has in mind when she shoots the unholy beast off his steed.

Too bad no one told her Pestilence can’t be killed.

Now the horseman, very much alive and very pissed off, has taken her prisoner, and he’s eager to make her suffer. Only, the longer she’s with him, the more uncertain she is about his true feelings towards her … and hers towards him.

And now, well, Sara might still be able to save the world, but in order to do so, she'll have to sacrifice her heart in the process.

381 pages, Paperback

First published March 20, 2018

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About the author

Laura Thalassa

37 books16.7k followers
Found in the forest when she was young, Laura Thalassa was raised by fairies, kidnapped by werewolves, and given over to vampires as repayment for a hundred year debt. She’s been brought back to life twice, and, with a single kiss, she woke her true love from eternal sleep. She now lives happily ever after with her undead prince in a castle in the woods.

… or something like that anyway.

When not writing, Laura can be found scarfing down guacamole, hoarding chocolate for the apocalypse, or curled up on the couch with a good book.

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5 stars
25,153 (35%)
4 stars
23,690 (33%)
3 stars
14,875 (20%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 8,571 reviews
Profile Image for Katerina.
422 reviews16.8k followers
September 14, 2018
Katerina's Guide to Surviving the Apocalypse
(or Pestilence and All His Friends)

DO not, I repeat do not, let mind-blowingly beautiful covers seduce you. This is the first step towards your doom.

IF you were weak like me and gave in to the temptress called Cover, you must be prepared to shut your moral compass. That is necessary if you do not wish to spend your entire reading experience hearing the voices in your head screaming error.404.this.is.not.right.

ACCEPT that you WILL NOT dive into a dark, paranormal, heart-pounding adventure. That your eyes will feast on apocalypse smut, that the world will literally burn but the heroine will be busy gawking at the sculpted abs of the human incubator of plague and judging the people who try to kill him in order to save their families and, you know, MANKIND.

TRY not to cringe every time Sara calls Pestilence well, Pestilence, even in their, ehem, intimate moments. (wait, scratch that, it cannot be implemented)

SIT back and try to enjoy the ride.

This is wrong on so many levels.

If you follow my reviews, you must have known by now that I don't do 2 stars. I've always stood for the idea that authors expose themselves when they publish a book, because willingly or not they pour a part of their souls into their works, so 3 stars has been my lowest rating, out of (maybe misguided, maybe not) respect. But this time, I couldn't help myself. It's not because Laura Thalassa is a bad writer; on the contrary, I enjoyed her prose in general, and liked the sarcasm that laced her narration, so this is by no means an attack to her talent, or the author herself. I also know, taking into consideration the average rating of this book, that I express a highly unpopular opinion, without intending to offend all those readers that enjoyed Pestilence. The truth is, I envy them. The blame for not liking Pestilence is all mine, since I knew it was about the unlikely romance between a human and the first of the Four Horsemen, thus being aware that the line between right and wrong would be blurry. But guys, the way the main heroine, Sara, perceives things is all messed up.

Let me give you an example: the last time Sara (who was taken captive by Pestilence) and Pestilence entered a big city, riding his undead stallion, the citizens had set up an ambush, resulting to Pestilence being gravely injured (note that he cannot be killed). So, the next time they approach a big city, Sara wants to get off the main road, because:

a) she wants to spare the people that didn't evacuate from a horrible, painful death
b) she's afraid she might be killed in the ambush
c) she doesn't want undying Pestilence to get hurt

And yes, Sara goes for option c). I suspect she wanted them to throw Pestilence a welcome party as a thank you for, you know, exterminating human race.

Don't get me wrong, along the way they encountered some really nasty people who committed atrocities against them, and I do not condone that. However, Sara was present when children and sweet elderly people died because of Pestilence, when children lost mothers to plague and parents lost their children when Pestilence commandeered their homes in order for Sara to eat their food (!) and rest (!), something Sara gradually came to accept. I am sorry, but this is beyond disturbing.

One could say that the whole point of this book is to show that Pestilence came to understand humanity and found compassion through the power of luuve, to depict Sara's inner battle etc. I beg to differ. I don't blame Pestilence for his nature (even though, to be honest, he was able to spare people but he did so only for the hot chick he encountered), I blame Sara for her tolerance. Pestilence tortured her, abused her, made her suffer again and again, and she stood by his side when he spread death and mourning, getting angry at the people who tried to stop him.

Sadly, this f!cked up relationship was not my only issue. The entire book consists of the same routine: Pestilence and Sara travel on horseback, they find some poor fellow's house to rest, and once in a while they encounter desperate people trying to stop them. It eventually got really tedious, it felt like I witnessed the same events again and again.
*another sigh*

To sum up, Pestilence was not the book for me.

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Profile Image for Navessa.
Author 10 books7,513 followers
April 16, 2019

Okay, so here's the thing, I can't remember the last time I enjoyed a book like this. You know, one where there's a borderline Stockholm Syndrome relationship going on.

Because feminist rage.

This author pulled it off for me, though, and I'm so frigging happy she did, because sometimes I just want to tune out and enjoy a love story that's dark and twisted and oh so wrong that it's right.

However, I can definitely see other readers having a problem with this book and the romance that blossoms between the male and female leads. And that really comes down to a simple question:

How do you feel about humanity?

Do you think we're all worth saving, or are you at the point where you're just like, "Fuck it, maybe we deserve the apocalypse."?

Lately, I fall into the latter category, so I didn't have much of an issue with the male lead (Pestilence, like, of the four horsemen of the apocalypse) leaving a trail of bubo-covered bodies in his wake.

And I didn't have a problem with the female lead starting to fall in love with him, even though he was actively wiping out her species. Because it's apparent from the beginning that he's not really driving himself onward. Some divine order is.

Which made for a really interesting male lead. Because, through the heroine, he starts to learn that humanity might be worth saving after all. Or, more like, maybe some of us are. The resulting existential crisis is fascinating, and worth sticking around for, in my opinion.

So, ultimately, if you're bothered by their relationship in the beginning, maybe try pushing through until the end. Because, and I still can't believe I'm saying this, the male lead is fully redeemed by then.

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April 5, 2020
Update 9
♛♚♔JULY 11 is the official release date. ♛♚♔
I can't wait! Grow up and don't let people tell you don't read this book that's so childish
Update 8
On second thought this is a 6 stars read!!! Seriously so good. I'm upping my rating 'cuz I recently finished Dark Harmony and it's not as good as this one but I still enjoyed it so much!! So I found a few flaws there and still a 5?? Then Pestilence is 6 'cuz it's so so good. GUYS!!!! you really need to read Thalassa sensei, she's like a writing goddess.

Update 7
GUYS! Thalassa sensei was robbed! Seriously big fraud! A stupid book designer stole the artwork so she had to replace the cover.

Question, though. If the criminal designer pays for the stolen artwork because he did it after all, can we recover the old cover? If it's possible let's start a petition. I need the original cover back!

Make the thief pay! Let's start a petition!

Update 6
Guys! Don't get so worked out! It's just a book! A good book, too.

It's fiction people.
How is the cover deceiving? A horseman of the apocalypse falls in love with hot chick. I mean that's not lovey-dovey romance, or post-apocalyptic adventure: it's romance of the dark-ish kind. Anyone can see that just by looking at the cover.

So Pestilence kills people?


Update 5

"I came to conquer this land and its people, but instead, one of its people conquered me."

4.5 pestilential stars!

Buddy read still in progress with: Rachel, Jordan, Parvati, Bilabi, Raven Blake, Kimberly and a few more friends still reading. Click below for their AMYzing reviews, I'll add more reviews later:
♥Raven Blake's

I loved Pestilence! I laughed, I cried, I couldn't put it down!

When you finished a book you loved and need an striking visual of a hot blond horseman and all you can find is this:



You scream like this!


Those aren't bad visual, I'm seriously thinking our world is ready for Fabio 2.0. The problem is along with those images I found this:


Not like I picture my lovely Pestilence.

I picture Pestilence like this:


Anyway! I've been hyped for Pestilence since I saw the cover and I was literally counting down the days because I have a thing for blond antiheros like Laurent, Jace, Aleksey, Lothaire, Warner, Sebastian,
even Sebastian Morgenstern is so close to my heart. Well thanks to Thalassa sensei, dear Pestilence joined the club! It took me a while to warm up to him because he was an ass, and not in a good way, but eventually he won my heart. I love love love love love him! It was so cute how Sara was teaching him to be human. Don't take me wrong, not everything was lovey-dovey. Some scenes were seriously fucked up and gory, but I loved that.

Guys this is a #Mustread, if you're a fan of Angelfall or you need to read a book featuring a brooding, blond hero you'll love Pestilence.

Update 4:
Buddy read in progress with Rachel, Jordan, Parvati, Bilabi. (Lucia and Corinne, will join us later maybe? During the holidays?)

Click on their names to read their reviews.


****IT'S LIVE GUYS! ****

*Kisses her kindle

March 20th can't get here fast enough!

Oho! Februarish- Marchish according to Thalassa-san. I can't wait!

♥NEED THIS! ♥Release date?


July 22, 2019
Update 07/22/19
I finished the sequel of this book some hours ago and I have to tell you that I was seriously underating this series. I'm upping my rating to 5 stars beacuse book 2, War has some issues, but it's another safe book that in no way ruins the good things built in Pestilence. If you like me hate cheating heroes and OW after meeting I highly recommend this series.

I also want to point out that Goodreads is a site to express our opinions about books and to discover new books. Any member of our community trying to prevent you

a) from expressing your honest opinion, whether positive or negative about this or any other book
b) from discovering this author's books because they would prefer if you paid more attention to the New adult fantasy (marketed as YA) of the big publishing houses.

is someone that if I were you, I would block.

I'm tired of seeing campaings pro/anti books based on their content (Twilight? Fifty shades? Carve the mark? Damsel? Black witch, Pittacus Lore books?) or stupid parameters like indie vs. Traditionally published, Harper vs Simon and Shuster, Amazon books vs. Penguin books etc.

Let the material speak for itself and readers decide by themselves

Nobody has the right to tell the readers DON'T FALL FOR THE COVER OF THIS BOOK, THIS BOOK IS PROBLEMATIC, THIS BOOK IS THIS OR THAT, THE AUTHOR OF THIS BOOK OFFENDED MY FRIEND. in other words, many people in goodreads always tell you don't read this book.
There's good and terrible edited books in the traditional published world. Lately bad edited books from the big publishers are a frequent occurency.
There's Good and terrible edited books in the indies world.
As a reader what we want is good stories and who publishes those stories is beside the point. The fact that some times content offends a group is something that I'm free to ignore or not. But don't act like if I enjoy Twilight or Fifty shades or tHE SELECTION, or Carve the Mark or Pestilence there's something wrong with me and don't try to force me into your triggers. I have triggers of my own, thank you very much.

So please don't use our Goodread platform to prevent people to read books they might enjoy. Trash the book all you want in your review if you want to. But don't use your review to try to prevent a book reaching its target audience. In the case of Thalassa and Sarah J. Maas books the target audience is the 17 and older readers. That's not what goodreads is for. I have specific triggers (cheating, rape, Other woman) and I love reading reviews that give me information about those triggers but I would never use my negative reviews to prevent people who might like a book better than me, to read it because its message offends me. That's immature. I have no time for immature readers so I'm starting to unfriend and block readers according to what I perceive are misleading reviews.

If you like me are a reader who pays for your own books and are tired of the same old same old of the fantasy and romance genres I suggest you to ignore the haters and give the Four Horsemen a chance. Or at the very least Rhapsodic. A book in my opinion, much better than all the New adult fantasy (which is currently marketed as YA ) by publishers like Wensday books and Bloomsburry. Distrust anyone who tells you Thalassa isn't an author worth reading.

One last thing. Many people who trash this book are big supporters of the big publishing houses and dont' want you to discover that some indies (key word being some)are publishing great stories that you're missing out. Just because some top Goodreads reviewers and Booktubers don't pay for their books (or want to get a publishing contract with traditional publishers) and NEED TO SUPPORT the traditional pulsihers doesn't mean the rest of us, that all we want is a good story to read, should follow their advice. I'm here to discover books, and I don't care the publisher behind it as long as I enjoy the story. And Thalassa's stories are some of the most original ones I've read in a long time. And to top it all safe!!! It's so difficult to find safe books nowadays so if you like me hate cheating, sad endings and OW after meeting don't let anyone keep you away from Thalassa's books.


No Cheating,
No Other Woman
No Other Men,
plus Virgin hero!

More info on safety below

Jason Lewis as Pest!



Thank you Laura Thalassa for writing this beautiful enemies to lovers book. And their love conquered everything! I'm so happy LOVE was such an important part of their redemption! Additional thanks to you Laura Thalassa for trusting your talent and hard work SO MUCH as to avoid falling into the pattern of false/deceiving /misleading advertising. That speaks volumes of your quality as both: as a human being and a writer.A good book doesn't need false advertising, word of mouth and a good story will make the book a bestseller. This one is currently number one on several Amazon Lists.

I almost gave Pestilence a 5 Stars rating on honest advertisement. I might up my rating when I finished the entire series because I've been saying all along that False marketing has become my personal trigger and it's so refreshing to find a new adult book marketed as such!

When a "fantasy" book has characters who are older than 19 YO and feature explicit sex scenes there shouldn't be:
a) False advertisement shoved through Goodreads on underage readers throats using Listopia and the Goodreads choice awards to give the impression that said book is a Young adult book

b) Campaigns to vote up and protect from erasing certain books in what is in my opinion big publishers' self-promotional lists aimed to promote new releases to underage readers (meaning YA 2017, YA 2018, YA 2019 lists in goodreads) Distrust those lists my friends! Plenty of books there are New adult and heavy on sex!

YA 2017
YA 2018
YA 2019

c) Censorship and campaigns against the few honest reviewers who mention explicit sex scenes in books marketed towards underage readers.
(Note to goodreads employees and editors, please stop trying to hide the information we readers need to make informed decisions before reading a book.)

So in spite of the current state of the Goodreads community regarding false advertising (they will probably hide/censor this review) I'll be honest in this review disregarding the consequences (Note: Thalassa isn't pretending her book is Young adult, she has been very upfront and HONEST about the genre of her book and I commend her for that.) : Pestilence isn't a Young adult book, it's a New adult as the MC's are all older than 18 and there are explicit sex scenes. Plus there are some graphic scenes of torture and a massive epidemic. However, that's the brilliance of this book: Not many authors can weave brutality and romance the way Thalassa does. She did it before in her Fallen world series (one of my favorite New adult dystopias) and she did it again with pestilence. I'm impressed with Thalassa's writing ability.

Is this book perfect? Is this book for everybody? Honestly, no, but what book is? As I said, if violence and sex are your triggers perhaps you should skip it (you'd be missing out, but hey, we like what we like). The hero, Pestilence, is very stubborn about I personally think that Thalassa could have made the violence of her post-apolyptic world way worse, but she didn't. She knew where to draw the line to make her book a very enjoyable experience and not one that will keep your bile rising up. I thought the combination of horror and romance was beautifully done.

So Pestilence starts 5 Years after The Four Horsemen of the apocalypse appeared on Earth. Pest is the first one to start their mission of wiping out the human race from Earth, and he takes his mission seriously. The internet has failed and some people aren't sure of what's going on. Several people have tried to kill Pestilence, but he's immortal. Sara doesn't know this and when her own attempt to kill Pest fails she'll become her prisoner. Cool isn't it? And let me tell you something. Pest is really sadistic at the beginning. He seems to have been observing for years how low our kind can scoop (Hitler? Rwanda? Bosnia? Sandy Hook?) and he'll hurt Sara physically so much that at one point you'll be wondering: Is this really a romance? To be honest I almost DNF at certain point. I can't stand a hero torturing the heroine and then root for her tofall in love with him. That's not romantic, but hang in there my dear romance-loving friends. Later in the book we'll be able to see why Pestilence is the way he is, and why he isn't the bad guy.

After a journey all over post-apocalyptic North America (think Angelfall) and several close encounters with death, a crucial point comes for Pestilence and Sara when they meet Rob and Ruth, an elderly couple. Rob and Ruth know what kind of death awaits to the ones who come close to Pestilence, yet they are religious, wise people. They realize Pest isn't a bad man, they know he's not doing what he does for fun and they above all notice the kind of feelings that are brewing inside him. He's already in love with Sara and it shows! So they'll welcome death with open arms after a long life of shared love and shared hardships. Honestly, I couldn't love this couple more. From their encounter with these two something changes in both, Sara and Pest and they'll start their own path through redemption. Through love, with love, because love. I thought that was beautiful!

Religion is managed well IMHO. Nothing is offensive or contradictory to the beliefs of the Abrahamic creeds: Islam, Christianity and Judaism. Have you read City of bones or Angelfall? Both are insanely popular books that IMHO have a more risky, potentially offensive approach to religion. Jace the hero of City of Bones says that although he is a nephilim and has been blessed by the Angel Raziel he hasn't seen anything that makes him believe in God, he's convinced that even if God existed (and he doesn't bet on it) we are on our own. Archangel Raphael the hero of the Angelfall series is an atheist and he isn't even convinced God created him. Does this sound risky and potentially offensive to bible readers? It isn't, considering both books are insanely popular. In comparison Pestilence handles the religious talk in a more neutral way IMHO. According to Pestilence God exists, but Pest is convinced God is beyond religions so all religions deserve respect. I personally loved the way religion was handled here. It discusses religion in a non-religious way. Brilliant!

Two minor issues I had with this book: The ending and not enough grovel

This book deserves all the praise is getting and I'm recommending this to my friends who loved New adult dystopian books.



Pre reading thoughts
Beautiful cover?

No fake advertising? This is New adult paranormal/fantasy advertised as such.
Amazing blurb?
A talented New adult author who as far as I remember never writes cheating heroes or heroines?
Enemies to lover trope?
Edgy like The Fallen world series?
Based on Apocalypsis mythology?

I'm in!
August 25, 2020

“Because naming things humanizes them. And once you humanize something, you are essentially recognizing it’s existence.”

Story ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Four years ago four horseman landed on earth. With their arrival humans thought the end of the world was there.
But they were so wrong. The horseman disappeared as fast as they appeared on earth.
Only four years later one of them appears again - Pestilence the conqueror of the world. Spreading a plague through the world he’s destroying Pestilence is attacked by Sara who sacrifices herself to kill the horseman and safe humanity.
But things never really go according to the plan and so Sara is being held prisoner by the horseman.
There’s suffering and there is pain painted with thick hate, but the line between love and hate is small and soon Sara isn’t so sure about her thoughts and her feelings for the horseman anymore.
This was awesome! The whole book was so addictive, funny and entertaining I couldn’t stop reading.
Even though I enjoyed it immensely there will be people saying that there is a lack of action. But for me it was a book with a great pacing, filled with action and a lot of feelings. All in all mostly an emotional and character driven book.
The first half of the book easily would’ve been a five star, but reading more and more of it, the book itself really concentrated on the love story in it and that made it a little less intriguing.
Still, the end was great and I’ll definitely reread this book sometime soon!
Btw. Did you see this gorgeous cover? Uh 😍😍😍

Characters ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
If you love sassy characters with a big mouth then Sara Burns is the perfect woman for you.
She’s brave, cool and absolutely funny.
I loved her from the start.
And even though it wasn’t really surprising, she did have a great character development surviving and accepting all the feelings she had.
And Pestilence - oh my precious baby. Yes, he was killing all human kind and yes, he was a grumpy super mean and brutal guy in the beginning, but even though if you met him he would totally scare the sh*t out of you, he still saved Sara a lot of times.
He went through such a great wonderful character development that I fell in love with him easily. Such a kind big hearted guy that lets you stand your own woman and safe his sorry ass but also protects and cares for you.
If you ask me, that’s probably the perfect man for me 😉
Also, how adorable was the fact that he had no clue what humans ate and so he mixed the weirdest things together for Sara to eat. Or the fact that once he tasted cake he couldn’t stop eating it? That was the absolute cutest thing ever.

World ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Anyone ever heard of the apocalypse the Bible is telling us about in their last book? Yes? Then you probably heard about the four horseman.
Pestilence, war, famine and death. (Yes, I googled famine I’m not even sorry where should I pick up an English world like that in Germany? 🤷🏻‍♀️ P.s. for all who’s asking themselves the same question: it’s something much stronger than hunger).
They came down to earth to end it and with each episode humanity shrinks even more.
Starting with Pestilence who’s spreading a plague through just appearing at one place.
With all the hunger, desperation and fear humans show the best and the worst sides of themselves.
All in all if we ever endured such a situation (You know: a horseman killing us all off one by one) then this reaction, the feelings of humanity seems pretty realistic.
When humans feel a desperation and fear they act violent and brutal. But that’s not all of the human kind - many react with kindness and caring for everyone around you.
So, I thought that this book had a great world building (even though it was really little). It satisfied me and I can’t wait to read the next book!

Relationships ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Oh man, oh man. Don’t we all love the relationships that change from hate to love?
No? Well, then I’m probably alone with this, but 🤷🏻‍♀️ who cares.
Starting with a powerful and fierce hate those two hadn’t had a good time together.
Even when we put down the insults and the mean words that were thrown at each other we’re still left with the near-death-situations.
But then... he always saved her. He never let her die, even though he hated her and for all the hate Sara felt she didn’t feel good about what she did to him on the first day.
And this exact fact - that they overcome their hate and their thoughts and fears - made this love story so wonderful.
It was funny, adorable and I really loved it.
And If you love some smut here and there you should probably read this book, because, hell, it’s addictive!
All in all I thought the second half of the book was too concentrated on the love, but I still loved it and it was still super enjoyable!

Writing style ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Some of you people don’t like when people curse in books. And when you’re thinking “Yeah, I hate that” you should probably never pick up this book. Like, never.
But if you’re on my side of the team - and you have absolutely no problem with curses as long as they’re not too much of them, then you’ll grin and laugh your ass off.
The author made Sara such a funny and sassy character that I loved all of her thoughts.
And even though you could think this whole book was a joke - it isn’t. In my opinion it does make you think a little bit about apocalypses and how we humans react to such situations.
So, all in all I loved it and I can’t wait to read the second book (and all the other books this author has written)!

Reread Nr. 1 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Still love Sara. Still love Pestilence. This book is so addictive and I love it so much! ♥️
Surely gonna reread this sometime soon. 💁🏻‍♀️
(I’m not even sorry. My poor TBR.)
Profile Image for Jilly.
1,838 reviews6,163 followers
March 27, 2018
Things I have never expected to say:
1. I think I'll pass on dessert.
2. This is my natural hair color.
3. You girls go get drunk and wild in Vegas without me.
4. I love Pestilence and I can't wait for War!
Okay, so I have still never said the first three, but number 4 is very true. Pestilence is my new book boyfriend. And, good news, HE is actually robbing the cradle, instead of me being a cougar this time. I think I read Paranormal just to get book boyfriends my own age - ancient.

Actual footage of me on my porch. That's my natural hair color. Stay off my lawn!

If you ever read the Angelfall series, and wished for some sex in it, this is the series for you. That was definitely one of my all-time favorite YA series. Rafe was funnier than Pestilence, but Pestilence is sweeter. (again. sounds strange.)

So, in this book we have Pestilence, the first of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, riding around, giving everyone a case of killer boils. The news is covering it, so of course people get the idea that they will simply kill him. But, whomever kills him will have to get close enough that they will be sacrificing their lives because they will be infected. Sarah, our heroine and some of her fellow firefighters draw straws to decide who is going to do the deed, and she "wins". Her job is simple - kill Pestilence. Of course, none of these morons have considered the possibility that maybe, just maybe, an avenging angel of the apocalypse couldn't be killed. Much like Keith Richards.

Recycle, kids. WWKD?

Sarah's murder attempt is extremely brutal. Like, torturous. So Pestilence decides to NOT kill her right away, and instead to make her suffer. And, at first she really does. But, as time goes on, these two crazy kids, who each tortured the other, fall in love - Stockholm Syndrome style. It's beautiful.

"You have awoken my heart"

Swoony? This guy is a total sweet-talker. And, he's a virgin. Now, I gotta say, good job on turning things around, Laura Thalassa! We need more virgin, beautiful god-men who fall in love with snarky not-virginal normal-women. If I have to read about one more alpha caveman playboy asshole who only falls in love with the snowflake virgin girl who saved herself just for him, I will probably puke. It's a refreshing change to have a guy who ISN'T a walking ad for STDs. Of course, since he's Pestilence, he might still dish them out, but at least he doesn't have them himself.

Why do we even have that font?

This book does have a paranormal romance going on, but it also has a lot of darkness, depth, and meaning in it. If there was anything I would have changed, it would have been towards the end. I don't feel like every couple HAS to have a break-up and fit into that exact formula. Also, Still, overall, this was an awesome book and I am really excited about the coming WAR!

Profile Image for Whitney Atkinson.
916 reviews13.9k followers
October 11, 2019
This book was like a train wreck—so, so bad, but so, so fascinating. I have very little positive to say about this book other than it was just damn easy and fast to read, but there’s really no literary merit to it other than that. This book is just a trashy light read that’s fun to read because it’s easy to make fun of while still enjoying yourself as you read it. If you don’t take it too seriously, it’s just smooth sailing, mostly because of how ridiculous this book is. I could sit here and critique the writing style and the misogyny in it and how the plot is inconsistent and doesn’t make sense and how the main character is dumb, but instead I’ll mention this: I don’t think the author has ever seen a horse. The HORSEman of the apocalypse has his trusty steed by his side the entire book, and I mean, the ENTIRE book. Half the time, they would bring Pestilence’s horse inside houses with them and stuff. Which just makes me think, has Laura Thalassa ever seen a horse? Does she know they’re big? Does she know a horse pulling a wagon wouldn’t fit through the doors of a hospital? And horses don’t lay down to help the rider get on?

Yeehaw comments aside, I’m not gonna lie and say I didn’t enjoy this book. However, it wasn’t smutty or redeemable enough for me to be interested in book two. Still, I’m not mad I read it. I just hope the author is okay with me only reading this to make fun of it, because the entire concept is bizarre and silly.
March 4, 2023

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Writing this review makes me sad because I really wanted to love this book for several reasons. One, because I'm friends with the author on Goodreads, have chatted with her, and really like her as a person; she seems really kind, laid-back, and funny. Two, because I am in love with that cover. It seems to be paying homage to the bodice-rippers of the 1980s and 90s, which I am all for, as you probably know, being the self-professed Bodice Ripper Kahleesi. And three, the idea of a paranormal romance involving the four Horsemen of the apocalypse was a really unique idea and I wanted to support it, was hoping for something like J.R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood meets R. Lee Smith's Last Hour of Gann.

Instead I got, TWILIGHT meets the apocalypse.

The beginning and ending are unarguably the best parts of this book. Sara Burns, the heroine, is a firefighter who has literally drawn the short stick to stay behind and protect her town at all costs. When she sees Pestilence riding his horse, she shoots him and then lights his body on fire. To her horror, he comes for her, half-rotting and dead, and makes her his prisoner, vowing to her that as soon as he's fully healed, he intends to make her suffer. His treatment of her is so cruel, and the story plays out across all these abandoned households and ghost-towns filled with the dead. It's creepy AF.

The problem occurs with what I think of as insta-love, even though it doesn't happen instantly - Sara's attraction to Pestilence happens much too fast. I saw it coming because the descriptions of his angelic beauty were far too numerous to ignore the warning signs looming on the horizons. I certainly wasn't happy about it, though, especially since she forgives his abusive treatment of her - shooting her in the back with arrows, dragging her bound down a tarmac road while he's on horseback, etc. - remarkably quickly. One of the thing I love about R. Lee Smith's work, who also specializes in immortal love stories, is that 1) she isn't afraid to make her heroes repulsive or at least inhuman and 2) the connections that are forged between her characters unravel gradually, amidst much emotional strife. I kept thinking how much better this story might have played out in the hands of an author like that.

I did like how the apocalyptic setting brought out the worst in people, although there were several scenes that were almost identical in how they played out. These scenes gave me a taste of the grim setting I was expecting. I also liked the old couple they might at one point, and was quite moved by their story. That was one of the saddest parts of the book. As I said, the ending was also great and brought up some very interesting moral dilemmas; it also felt like a very different book from the first. It was like the author had 2 disparate ideas: one about a messed-up romance between a monster and an ordinary human girl (R. Lee Smith) and the other about a tender romance between a misunderstood and tragic figure who must be redeemed by an ordinary human girl (Stephenie Meyer). They really didn't mesh for me.

Also, Pestilence says some pretty creepy things to Sara about her not being a virgin. I quoted the thing he said in one of my status updates, but that made me really not like him, and that's supposedly after he's started to fall for her. What the hell, Pestilence? Sure, he redeemed himself in the end, but there's a pattern of creep behavior here that was never sufficiently addressed or talked through.

Overall, I found myself sadly disappointed by this book because so many people were giving it high ratings and I really wanted to enjoy it too. I can't help but feel that they read a different book than I did, as seems to be the case for a lot of these YA/NA new releases lately. I do have other books by this author on my Kindle, so I'm hoping that they might be better for me than this one. I also saw that the second book in this series is about War, so maybe a character who deals in battles will be more appealing to me than one who deals in fevers and plagues.

Thank you, Heather, for buddy-reading this with me!

2 to 2.5 stars
Profile Image for Arini.
772 reviews1,615 followers
May 13, 2023

🎧 3rd Read, June 2021 — 4.25 Stars

Holy shit! Plague Daddy, yes please step on me. 🤚🤪

📚 2nd Read, April 2020 — 4 Stars
📚 1st Read, April 2018 — 3 Stars

Quarantine + Pestilence = The Purrrfect Escapism!

If only . . . this Covid19 pandemic we’re facing right now could be as easily overcome with me romancing Pestilence’s sorry arse. Alas, that kind of scenario only happens in books. But hey, a girl can (day)dream, right? Anyhow, my morbid sense of humor steered me into re-reading this post apocalyptic paranormal romance.

And surprise surprise, what a stellar combo this turned out to be! It was strangely comforting that amidst all the chaos, I could smoothly immerse myself in this more or less chaotic world of the Four Horsemen. This re-read has made me appreciate the author more and love all the things I found slightly troubling on my first read.

One day, Sara tries to kill Pestilence—for obvious reasons. But much to her (and the rest of human race) dismay, the guy is immortal (duh!). After recovering from Sara’s poor attempt at murder, Pestilence takes her as his prisoner. And so from there, what I’d call transcendental love (with Stockholm Syndrome-esque tendency) transpires.

These two are like oil and water! Sara is sassy, sarcastic, and compassionate. Pestilence, harbinger of death as he may be, is cruel but also adorably innocent. IKR? How is that possible?! I absolutely loved their Beauty and the Beast meets Matthias and Nina (Six of Crows) dynamics. The clash of their personalities is what slowly leads them to enter Epic Love La La Land.

In spite of the nonexistent plot and lack of world building, this book truly excels where romance is concerned. Our main leads have a rocky start to their relationship. But once Pestilence’s atrocity towards Sara is passed and as they spend more time together, their blooming hate to love romance is simply heart throbbing. The ending of this book kinda reminded me of Twilight: New Moon.

I thoroughly revelled in being with Pestilence and Sara (don’t forget Trixie the mighty horse!) throughout their grueling journey. The writing manages to alleviate the bleakness of the setting. Regardless of all the grotesque carnage and violence, this book has granted me an overall fun and entertaining reading experience. It’s become a book I’ll never get tired of re-reading.

My review of:
#2 War — 3.75 Stars
#3 Famine — 2.5 Stars
#4 Death — 3.5 Stars
Profile Image for chan ☆.
1,051 reviews49.1k followers
July 2, 2018
take me away, plague daddy

this surprised me! essentially, pestilence comes to town and our dear friend sara tries to murder him and burn him alive. he’s not real happy about being made into human bbq so after his immortal ass recovers he takes sara prisoner and true love ensues. duh.

I was definitely surprised at the discussion of immortality and morality in this. also by the characterization. plague daddy was really endearing after the whole rah rah pustule nonsense & sara was compassionate and a badass the whole time.

also the sex wasn’t that descriptive but it was cute. definitely interested to read the next book.
Profile Image for Renegade ♥.
1,339 reviews
March 25, 2018
5 stars

This book is now on my favourites shelf.

I will definitely be reading it again.

And the general consensus from our buddy read (BR):

Image result for I want more gif

It was a total roller-coaster.

(There were some moments where it seemed to damn near fly off the tracks just to keep us screaming and hanging on for dear life...)

Image result for manga roller coaster gif

And even though this tale was filled with darkness, devastation, suffering, violence, heartbreak and despair?

While it also explored some of the deeper questions about life, death, faith, morality, and God?

And moved some of us to tears and/or gave a few of us that telltale lump in the throat?

It was often freakin' hilarious.

Image result for beyonce laughing gif

Our heroine, Sara, is one tough, smart, snarky and compassionate cookie, and she definitely uses her fightfighter training/skills, love of poetry (Edgar Allen Poe, anyone?), and fantastic sense of humour to get through all the 'hard' times (talk about an understatement on my part). That humour helped us to get through them too.

As for Pestilence (who came to be affectionately known around BR parts as Pest)?

Well, you've got to read the book to understand just how much of a feat this author pulled off in making one of the freakin' four horseman of the apocalypse,"the literal embodiment of plague", a sympathetic romantic figure, especially when you consider that his sole purpose was to wipe out humankind and he was doing such a damn fine job of it...

But trust me, when all is said and done?

This is a story about love, forgiveness, understanding, compassion and hope, and the ways in which all those things (but especially love) have the potential to save the world...

Such a fascinating ride.

And now I'm definitely looking forward to Death.

One of the upcoming books in this series, peeps, and not the real deal.

Just so we're clear here.


What a beautiful cover...

Since I'm also intrigued by the blurb?

Onto the TBR pile it goes!
Profile Image for Sabrina.
476 reviews245 followers
January 31, 2019

"Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, “Come.” I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer".


This is the first book that I have read about the Four Horsemen. And damn if it wasn't good.

This book is a great combination of a very realistic and sarcastic female character and a very well writing anti-hero.
It was filled with hate, love, loss, pain, suffering, devastation, violence, torture, forgiveness and sarcastic/funny moments. What else do you need to be honest?

Sara is just great, and she and I have 2 things in common, I'm tedious as well and I too have a soft spot for Pestilence.
I absolutely adore it when she had her philosophical moments and her love for poetry and English literature.
"Because naming things humanizes them. And once you humanize something, you are essentially recognizing its existence."

I'm sure that since the beginning we weren’t supposed to hate Pestilence because he was a fantastic character. An anti-hero at its finest.
He's somewhat oblivion about the world that he is supposed to destroy just made his character better.
And I absolutely adore him!
"Only Pestilence could outshine the sun."

How can this book end like that? With that cliffhanger? Like, WAR man, WAR! The next book will be about WAR!
I need it!

This is definitely a favorite of mine.

"And so it was, and so it shall be, for the Age of Man is over, and the Age of the Horseman has begun. They came to earth, and they came to end us all."
Profile Image for Corinne.
146 reviews
May 8, 2020
That cover!

EDIT 09/14/18

I hate the new cover. I had already paid for the paperback and now the new covers won't match. This is the last time I buy a print book of an incomplete series.
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,826 reviews2,187 followers
March 28, 2018


In a totally random and weird review, I will be using gifs from the movie Elf to express ALL THE FEELINGS!

So me about Laura Thalassa all the time:

Which will probably lead to this:

Anyways... from the moment I saw the cover reveal for Pestilence, I was DYING (get it?) to get my grubby hands on a copy of this book. I preordered and everything, which I rarely ever do. Then once it hit my kindle I couldn't put it down (except for sleep. Stupid stupid sleep).

Here's what I was like reading the book:

And I loved it so much! My first 5 star book in over a month!

This is about Sara, a young firefighter who attempts to kill Pestilence when he comes to her town. BUT, he cannot be killed. So Pestilence takes Sara captive in order to make her suffer. Over time Sara finds herself conflicted because of the horrible things he does, but she cannot help but see another side to the horseman. The question is, can he ever change and go against his nature?

Laura writes the best new adult fantasy/dystopia novels. I get completely sucked into her world building, her characters and her stories. I demand more of my book friends read her books!!! Seriously, you won't regret it.

And now, to wait for the next book..... le sigh.

Also, here's one more gif just cause:

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Profile Image for jessica.
2,534 reviews32.5k followers
March 25, 2023
real talk - this story is not for everyone. heck. i didnt even think this would be for me. so imagine my surprise when i found myself somewhat entertained!

there are two major parts to this story - the dystopian, post-apocalyptic world that is present after the arrival of the four horseman (pestilence in particular) and the stockholm syndrome-esque romance between pestilence and sara. its the first part that really got my attention.

not that the romance is horrible - i just couldnt stand sara. i didnt find her funny like most readers do. she was just too rough for me to like and, believe it or not, i thought that pestilence deserved better. plague daddy could totally get it, you know what im sayin? ;) but i did enjoy pestilence finding his own humanity and growth because of his interactions with her.

im interested to see how the series progresses with the other horseman and how the world-building will be portrayed. hopefully theres more of it because i think its an interesting concept!

3.5 stars
Profile Image for Aisling Zena.
635 reviews462 followers
June 8, 2019
Free on Amazon.co. uk on 8/6/19 https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B...

4.5 stars
Review sort of posted 23/6/18

I was planning to write a review for this but my body has let me down. Apparently when I get sick I have to do it to extremes. I have the nastiest cold I've had in years while on that time of the the month and battling migraines. I've had quite enough these past three days to be honest.

Anywhocaresaboutthisbitcheshealthproblemsway, I loved the book. I loved the concept and the writing was exceptional. It did remind me The Queen of All that Dies but I dunno if it was because of the characters and their love-hate relationship or just the authors writing style. Pro-tip, don't read this while you're sick. I had some pretty messed up, feverish dreams about Pestilence touching me and me dying. Woke up in panic attack mode because I thought I couldn't breathe. Obviously, I could just not that well. I will try to re-write this review at a later time because this rambling doesn't even make sense in my brain, right now or give justice to this lovely book. I will also try to catch up with all your reviews,updates and news probably next week as writing this has exhausted me.

Hope you're all healthy and well.

P.S. Please excuse any mistakes.


Free on kindle unlimited at the time of posting!



That cover! The blurb!

Profile Image for Lucia.
733 reviews805 followers
April 3, 2018
Worldbuilding - 2 STARS
Pestilence is a romance set in dystopian world but in its core this is not a dystopian novel. This should serve as a warning for all of you hardcore dystopian/fantasy/paranormal lovers who (like me) expect actual worldbuilding when presented with new world/creatures - there is almost none worldbuilding in this book.

Plot line - 1 STAR
Worldbuilding aside, this novel also lacks plot. Literally, there wasn't happening anything remarkable that would push story forward. There was only annoying bickering between MCs and nothing else! I can't remember the last time when I was bored as much as while reading Pestilence.

Romance - 1 STAR
The worst thing about this novel - romance was one big failure. To be honest, I found romance in this book disgusting and not romantic at all. There even wasn't any chemistry between Sara and Horseman, at least I didn't feel it. Author set on a quest to make a complete villain into romantic hero but it didn't work out. "Hero's" transformation was unrealistic, fairytale-like and just plain stupid. Author made it look as if hero wanted to change just so he could win Sara over, not because he realized his wrongdoings. Moreover, there was no believable romance development at all. Except for lust, I had no idea what Pestilence saw in Sara and vice versa. How could she even consider indulging such a soulless creature? How could she even think about having sex with THE killer while being witness to all those terrible deaths all around her? But what could I expect from one-dimensional characters... Simply said, I couldn't find it in me to root for the "romance". If you want truly good and believable romance with somehow evil but complex hero, go for Extinguish by J.M. Darhower and avoid this book.

If above mentioned factors don't deter you from enjoying a novel, then pick this book up. But it wasn't for me at all. What a disappointment and waste of my time!
Profile Image for Penny Reid.
Author 109 books20.7k followers
April 15, 2018
I almost stopped reading this book at 75% because it was soooooo gooooooooooood. This train of thought probably doesn't make sense to most people, but the beginning and middle were so great, I worried the ending wouldn't adequately pull everything together / would ruin it. I kept thinking, "How is she going to pull this together?!?!!?" But since the beginning / middle were amazing, I decided to have faith that the end would be as well.

The ending didn't completely ruin the book. But it did

That said, I'm still giving this 4 stars because of its unusual/unique premise, the humor, the engaging style / high quality writing, and because I want to.

I also plan to pick up the next book in the series, hoping that the author

Profile Image for Alienor ✘ French Frowner ✘.
839 reviews3,758 followers
February 15, 2021

1.5 stars. Did you think that after months without reading somewhat critically (don't tell my uni professors I said that, okay) I'd be more lenient towards extremely cringy stuff? I'm asking because for some obscure reason, I did? Way to misunderstand your own-self, Anna. The fact that I couldn't look away is more a matter of my bewildered disgust sparring with my profound disinterest than anything else.

I'm sorry but fantasizing about boning an inhuman creature with purrfect abs while people are literally rotting a door away isn't something I'd call romantic or even, god, sanitary? Perhaps I'm a bit over-the-top in my aversion for germs but the smell, friends, the smell alone shouldn't make this work, should it? I tried, though. I tried really really hard to keep my heart open but even with a stethoscope, never would I have heard some kind of reaction in my chest because hey I'm pretty sure that my heart died, and I'm not saying that to be cute but more in a I'm not sure I can orgasm ever again, that shit was that gross. I understand the whole it's the end of the world excuse but honestly it didn't work for me at all. As far as I'm concerned the chemistry was nonexistent and by the end of the book I still do not know why these two are supposed to be in love.

Don't misinterpret me, though, I'd have been way more interested if Pestilence hadn't been some kind of angelic figure with shiny hair - on the contrary, as it was, his whole persona was so damn boring at the best of times that I couldn't ignore the ways he was also a possessive asshole. At no moment did I buy into his supposedly conflicted and tortured nature because damn it, he was so bland?! I mean we met Death for no more than two pages and my heart resumed beating so suddenly that I thought I was having an attack (and Death wasn't that interesting either). Pestilence's declarations of love left me cold and I'm pretty sure that I wouldn't even have noticed them if not for my kindle telling me that 400+ people had highlighted them. The amount of cheese I'd be willing to eat for that dude is zero, and by the time his "redemption" came around my eyes were struggling so hard to stay open that I honestly did not care.

Considering that there was no plot whatsoever - except if you count wandering around trying not to bone someone as a plot, and I say this as someone who enjoys romance when it's done right - and that the first-pov present tense really got on my nerves, the feeble interest Sara could create in me - she was quite great, all things considered - couldn't redeem that book in my eyes. Not for me.

TW - death (including child death), graphic violence, abuse

For more of my reviews, please visit:
Profile Image for Melanie.
1,168 reviews98.2k followers
May 15, 2023
Whew, okay this was for sure a ride. I really did like the apocalyptic setting (and the mention of an abandoned las vegas) and just the premise of these four horseman who all went missing, until one random day when one came down and started said apocalypse. But that’s about all i did like. I found the banter and just situations in general to be so uncomfortable, with our main character making questionable decision after questionable decision. But truly, the thing that bothered me the most was the very heartbreaking depictions of children and families slowly dying because of the love interest i am supposed to eventually root for. I truly think this is the first book i’ve ever read that centered around a traveling quest/situation that i really didn't enjoy.

trigger + content warnings: suicide ideation, a plague setting, death, murder, graphic violence, scenes with fire, blood depictions, abduction, loss of a loved one, animal injury + death, alcohol consumption, ptsd, gun violence, threat of rape, abuse, human trafficking, torture, crucifixion, and many mentions and scenes of children dying that really impacted me as a reader - so please use caution.

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Profile Image for Cbackson.
38 reviews21 followers
March 21, 2018
This book is an interesting exploration of how much downright evil romance readers will accept from a hero before deciding that he's unredeemable.

Based on the other reviews for this book, the answer is "a lot, especially if the cover is pretty."

The plot summary amply covers what's going on here, but in case you're wondering: this book is exactly what it says on the label. The hero is a harbinger of the end of days. He infects people with a horrible and painful disease and they die. He has the choice not to do it, but he keeps doing it. It's okay, though, because he's nice to the heroine and SUPER hot, and also, some kindly old people forgave him as they were dying of the plague that he infected them with.

What a catch, right? I know that when I'm trolling OkCupid, I'm really looking for a guy who will both torture me personally and do his damnedest to wipe out the human population. I mean, come on - at least he's gainfully and apparently permanently employed as a plague-bringer! That's job security!

In all seriousness, there is the idea of an interesting plot here - Pestilence, the "hero," is a tool of a higher power, sent to cleanse the world. He knows he has the ability in individual cases to spare people, but what he comes to realize over the course of the book is that he actually has the ability to refuse his entire purpose - to show mercy broadly, as opposed to individually. That journey could be very interesting.

Unfortunately, the author doesn't seem willing to trust that story arc to be compelling enough. The book opens with the heroine trying to kill Pestilence to stop him from further spreading the disease. This is portrayed as a heroic act. We see her motives, and know them to be entirely altruistic. We know she's horrified at having to kill. However, when OTHER people try to kill Pestilence - you know, TO STOP HIM FROM INTENTIONALLY SPREADING A HORRIBLE AND FATAL DISEASE - they are portrayed as cruel and venal killers. They're also not nice to the heroine - you know, the woman they see helping the guy who is INTENTIONALLY SPREADING A HORRIBLE AND FATAL DISEASE - and so we're supposed to think they're bad for that reason too.

The author pushes the boundary on what we as reader will accept in a romantic "hero," but ultimately, she doesn't have the courage of her convictions. She makes those who resist Pestilence villains, and those who forgive him heroes. It would have been a braver, bolder move to acknowledge that the people who gave up their lives to try to kill a walking instrument of indiscriminate death are the real heroes in this book. Not Pestilence. Not Sara. And not the kindly old couple who offer Sara and Pestilence hospitality, and receive death in return.

Romance novels have a defined arc and the nature of that arc is such that you are supposed to root for the couple to find a happily ever after. The nature of the romance arc is such that you're supposed to believe that they deserve that happily ever after; that they've become better, wiser people and merit that kind of love. At the end of this book, Pestilence finally abandons plague-bringing because our heroine's magic vajajay has caused him to understand love and mercy. But you know what? I'm not willing to accept the death of billions as a mere plot tool for character development. I'm not buying the love story of a mass murderer and his chief collaborator. Giving these characters a happy ending requires minimizing all the death that came before. I'm not here for that, and you shouldn't be either.
Profile Image for Melissa.
356 reviews626 followers
April 5, 2018

If paranormal romance was more like Pestilence, I would actually give them a chance.

This exceeded expectations. Though, I do have to be honest, they were very low to begin with. I mean, all I expected was some strong alpha douchebag to conquer some supposedly "strong and ballsy" female and then make her succumb to his whims in the name of lurve. But that wasn't necessarily what happened. I mean, yes and no. But more no than yes? I don't know, you'll have to read and find out.

But seriously, everything that I abhor in paranormal romance was nowhere to be found here. The same female character that was present in the beginning is the same one we find through the whole story. She doesn't begin as a snarky character and then turn into some lost puppy the second her feelings come into play. She stands her ground in what she believes in and throughout the story all her feelings feel true to her character.

And then we have the perfection of an anti-hero. So I went into this doubting Laura could pull it off. I remember reading the Queen of that that dies and how that left a lot to be desired. That main male lead gave me the heebie jeebies and that relationship had left an ick factor that took its time to dissolve. So you can understand my warryiness when the main character here was again a man of power on the wrong side of the tracks. But lo and behold, Pestilence the Conqueror was everything that king was not. And dear heavens did this guy make me swoon.

The story was interesting, the plot manianed a decent pace,the gore was perfection, and the romance tooks its time. What more could you ask for?
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,607 reviews1,482 followers
July 30, 2019
Sale Alert August Monthly Kindle Deal 1.99

I love Pestilence!


Don’t judge me, it��s not your job. The apocalypse is nigh and the Four Horsemen have come to bring the end of days to humanity. So technically it's their job.

This is not going to be for everyone. It is a hate to love story and some of it is not nice. I mean take Sara for instance on her first meeting with the horseman she ends up shooting him and then burning him alive. Hey she feels bad about it and she did draw the short straw. Don’t get your panties in a twist that all happens in the first 15 pages so in Robin’s book that is not a spoiler. He decides that death is too good for her and he intends for her to suffer.
Again, I don’t know whether him saving me is a kindness or a curse . It’s obviously a curse, you dumb bimbo. He ain’t saving you to romance your ass.

Typical love story beginnings right there. I mean who didn’t try to kill the man they ended up falling in love with? But basically, Sara is Pestilence’s prisoner and travels with him as he brings plague to the world. It is a weird story of basically Stockholm syndrome in a dystopian world. Which while dark, is also filled with hope as Sara gets to know the newly minted Physical embodiment of Pestilence.

I was actually a little surprised by how much I liked the romance aspect of this book. I mean who falls in love with Pestilence? *raises hand, shyly* No, but seriously, I’ve never had this conversation
Friend: I really want to read a story about a hot guy, but not just any hot guy you know?

Me: Well, I’m really loving the broken tortured thing right now.

Friend: Oh, yeah I get that. And what if he has a horse.

Me: Sure, but hey I don’t like it when animals die in books so the horse needs to be undying.

Friend: Agreed. You know who rides horses. Knights and Soldiers and Dukes, Dukes always ride horses

Me: Man not another story about a Duke and I’ve never seen a Knight or Soldier with an undying horse

Friend: True. The only undying horse I know of is the one the headless horseman rides and I’m pretty sure kissing is going to be a problem if he is the main character.

Me: Oh…the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse ride undying horses. It could be one of them. Maybe War, he sounds kind of hot

Friend: Egh. War has so been done. I think Aries has ruined war for everyone. What about Pestilence though? He carries around disease everywhere he goes. He’d make a great love interest

Said no one ever…well accept Laura Thalassa who totally made it work.

Pestilence is like a kid emotionally. He has been around forever, but this is the first time that he has experienced the world in the flesh and it is a whole different experience. Add Sara into the mix and it is a jumble of confused emotions.
“I cannot decide if you are a toxin or a tonic,” he says, lifting a hand to my cheek . “Only that you plague my thoughts and fill my veins.”
Pestilence really could work on his compliments.

The journey of this did get a little repetitive in places as they travel the world to spread the plague our hero has been tasked with releasing on the people of the world. Overall it gave us insight both into how Sara and Pestilence both changed because of the other.

I love Sara as the narrator. She is funny and irreverent and the dialogue cracked me up in places. I love how she knows herself and is her own woman in a really strange situation. Personally, I found her fun as a narrator. However, she isn’t going to be for everyone.
I could give birth to a deity - thingy.
A godspawn.
Nope. Nope, nope, nope. Noooooooooope.
This conversation is quickly going from uncomfortable waters to my-vagina-is-mutinying-it-doesn’t-matter-that-you’re-sex-on-legs-well-okay-maybe-it-does-a-little-nevermind-my-vagina-is-cool-with-it.
That’s what happens when you’re upsettingly pretty. My libido gets stupid—correction, stupider (because let’s face it, on a normal day my libido is still a bimbo)

Overall I really enjoyed this dystopian/PNR and the arc for these characters. It was interesting to see both the best and worst of humanity in the wake of all the chaos and I’m very interested to see what War will bring to the table next. Also Famine, because again how is she going to make Famine sexy, it just boggles the mind.

P.S. There is sex in this. If you, like me, read Angelfall and wanted a little *bump, bump*, then this might be what you were looking for.
Profile Image for gigi habibin't (mareeva's version).
211 reviews3,371 followers
December 5, 2021
4.25 stars! ⭐⭐⭐⭐

“I cannot decide if you are a toxin or a tonic,” he says, lifting a hand to my cheek. “Only that you plague my thoughts and fill my veins.” Pestilence really could work on his compliments.

dear pestilence, let me count all the ways i love thee:

🏇 grumpy, gruff horseman who only cares about ✨ DESTRUCTION ✨
🏇 calls us filthy, braindead, and useless humans
🏇 has shiny, golden hair that probably has zero split ends
🏇 tries food because sara likes them
🏇 instead of killing sara (because she kills him first), he drags her with him as he spread his delicious plague across the world
🏇 simps for sara... because why wouldn't you? that woman is a queen your honor.
🏇 he was a virginia and my good sis sara taught him how to fuck. this is the kind of good shit i want to shoot into my veins.

i thought i left my dystopian days behind with YA fiction, but wow this book was just extremely well written. the dialogue was both witty and intellectual, with real depth to the characters. the topics they would discuss never once bored me but made me feel like I was learning a lot myself.

pestilence and sara were perfect, she really challenged his ways and made him see that the world and humans are not as doomed as he once thought. I thought sara was really funny and fierce, yes she drooled over his body for like 70% of the book but i know everyone's nasty asses would do the same...

🥰 top 3 pesti moments 🥰

“Sara,” he says, nearly breathless, “I feel … I feel I am losing myself to this sensation—to you.” His eyes search mine. “Is this … is this love?”
- pls imagine a man loosing his damn mind because of a boner

“I find human clothes to be coarse, I like making fires, falling asleep is a troubling experience—but it is oddly enjoyable when you have someone to hold onto—” Color rises in my cheeks. “—and my favorite person is you.”
- where is my 7ft + horseman who wants to spread the plague but my pussy so good it makes him rethink his life's purpose?

"He wants … he wants … to marry me? After last night? Shit on a motherfucking stick. I mean, I know I’m a decent lay, but I’m not that good."
- a REAL man asks for your hand in marriage after making sweet sweet love to you to protect and honor your virtue... god i am begging you to send a man like this my way or i might have to jump in a bathtub with my toaster.

ps - minus 0.75 stars because fair enough pestilence stopped spreading the plague but must he change his name to v**t*r? naur that is just so disrespectful.
Profile Image for JewelsyGoolsy.
565 reviews93 followers
April 10, 2018
4.5 -omg Jewelsy actually loved this and is baffled by that, so is actually taking the time to write a longer review than normal- Stars

Disclaimer: most people know that paranormal or fantasy or dystopian stories don’t really pump my nads at all. Too much world building, other-world jargon and overly informational dialogue tends to put me into a coma before I can even get to the romance and swoons.

BUT even I was surprised by how awesome and easy to understand/follow this book was. For a pnr/dystopian book, a slow dummy like me was actually able to stay awake and read this gem in one sitting! And to top it all off, it was a slow burn/ enemies to lovers book... AND I STILL LOVED IT (cos Jewelsy is also super impatient bout the slow burns and E2L tropes draw a fine line on being too mean at times).

In the end, I got my chase and grovel from none other than one of the 4 horsemen of the apocalypse! *Swoon* But if I had only one wish, it would be to get the H’s POV once in a while, but beggars can’t be choosers.

Told in 1st person POV from the h and 1st standalone story in a series. Has an ok HEA/HFN 5 years after, with lead up into book #2 (which I will defo be tbr’ing).
Profile Image for Penny.
740 reviews209 followers
March 21, 2021
Actual Rating: 4.5 stars.


I loved this book.

Such a slow build up. Very slow pace. Very quiet story. Yet, truly BEAUTIFUL.
So great. No blacks and whites, all grey.

The development of the characters, their relationship, their falling in love . It was so well crafted, that even though it all happened in a fantasy world, it felt real, perfectly believable. Just beautiful.

Hands up to the writer. Well done.


P.S: There is no doubt in my mind I’ll keep reading this series and this author.
Profile Image for Jen.
1,654 reviews995 followers
July 19, 2019
****4.5 Stars!!!!!****

Wow! What a unique book I just read! Such a dark, horrific, profound book! And yet, somewhere hidden underneath the torment blossomed a love story that is unlike any other that I have read! I love finding stories like this that completely stand on their own, and keep me intrigued from start to finish. I will admit that I had to take a half a star off mainly because I found the first half of the book monotonous at times. Even saying that though, my curiosity had been piqued and I just couldn’t stop reading about Pestilence and Sarah!

This is definitely a book I won’t forget... and I am eager to read the next Horseman’s book...which is War! If you are into dark, dystopian reads, or looking for something different... I highly recommend this book! It will keep you guessing and also make you stop and think! I am sooo glad I decided to give this a try and it’s going down as one of my top favourites for 2019!!!!😬😬😬
Profile Image for Giorgia Reads.
1,010 reviews1,953 followers
May 15, 2022
1.5 stars

What did I just read?

- the plot of the book managed to be utterly boring and so very pointless and that’s a feat considering this set out to be some sort of urban fantasy, post apocalyptic story ——— the whole thing consisted of Pestilence (and Sara) riding his horse through cities to spread the plague with his presence. It was literally a rinse, repeat situation of: ride till Sara is tired and hungry, find a house (occupied or empty, doesn’t matter), steal those peoples food (after Sara tells us if the house has electricity and what food can be found in the pantry - each and every time) and take their bed so she can rest while the occupants (including children) die of the plague you brought to them, scout the premises of the house while Sara rests, then start the cycle again, with some interruptions of the program when humans on your journey try to stop you by killing you. Insert some kissing and sex while stopping at the random houses and I literally missed absolutely nothing in the whole book plot. That’s it. Well, there are the very many instances of Sara lusting after him and counting the stars in his eyes and describing the planes of his abs - after… you know - she saw people dying of the plague he spread oh so willingly and she begged for him to save a couple of kids they came across but he was like “nah, I’m Pestilence and suffering is for the living - so let those little assholes die” - and die they do for 4 days and Sara tends to those kids while they die in with much suffering next to their parents.
The was no worldbuilding, no explanation of what is to come, what are the consequences of Pestilence stopping the plague, how come he can remain on Earth?, why spread plague at all if stopping it out of the blue is something you can do with no repercussions?! Was it a choice then? A byproduct of your nature? Something that fulfils you? Is Sara gonna die while you stay your immortal self?! What the fuck is the point of this book?!?

- another objective reason (in my opinion) to dislike this book is that I found Sara to be a disgrace to humanity. Her priority during this whole process of a book was Pestilence and his beauty, then Pestilence (the immortal man) and his suffering if humans try to kill him, Pestilence and the very naughty things she wants to do to him, Pestilence and how he is just a poor little misunderstood immortal being who has not tasted human emotions and desires and who can totally be excused for killing millions of people. I got so freaking disgusted with her how she’d excuse every single thing or rationalise it somehow to make her feel less shitty about banging a guy who spread a plague so horrible to innocent little humans and then made you watch while they die in agony. But it’s alright, he’s just kinda misguided and maybe after enough banging he’ll be more lenient with humans and you know, you get all the benefits of being immune to disease and the orgasms he’s so happy to provide.

- the book didn’t develop Pestilence’s character. For someone so powerful and all knowing - he literally knew nothing about humans - and sometimes he’d say so but other times he’d say he was a witness to everything so he actually does know more than enough. I found his mission and convictions a joke because they weren’t explored enough - we got some freaking cheesy lines about God and spirituality and how we are all fools to believe the Bible or other holy books but the rest of the time he felt like a robot built with a purpose who doesn’t have a mind of its own but is slowly developing free will. And I’m sorry but that doesn’t fit with the character we were told he was supposed to be. I feel like the writer was more concerned to write how beautiful he was in every chapter than actually giving him a personality, a meaning, a purpose which can be rationalised or explained or torn down later down the road by new convictions - but no, the simplified version of what happened is this: He got a taste of sex and was like “I would rather do this for the rest of Sara’s mortal life, than gallop astride my horse through the continents, I can’t be bothered with that right now”

His senseless killings are just not justified in a way in which I can maybe ignore them. The whole time he was making a conscious choice to kill everyone even as he knew that children are innocent, that most people didn’t deserve to die so horribly, he was undeterred. And on top of that, I’m so freaking disappointed that he never regretted his actions. The only reason he performed a retraction of the plague at the end (though, that doesn’t help the millions of innocents already dead) and why he stopped spreading it, is so that Sara would stay with him and accept him fully and marry him. There was no talk of him understanding the atrocity of mass murder, the fear and desperation of the people who tried to stop him by killing him, no nothing. Just him wanting in Sara’s pants so he chose to stop his mission to indulge in some very carnal,very human (might I add) desires.

- another thing I absolutely hated was the fact that humans were villainized for trying to kill him. He is IMMORTAL - but Sara kept acting like humans were the problem (oh, how dare they trying to kill him and hurt him) he’s a being himself, how can they be so cruel!? Girl, do you hear yourself? The hypocrisy. Not to mention, if some unknown being was spreading a horrible plague and my children were gonna die, or any of my loved ones and millions of others, I think it’s fair to say the masses of people wanting his demise - are actually in the right. She literally would have shot a group of people who only wanted to defend themselves from him, because she couldn’t watch him suffer from the attempted murder. - the man who spreads plague and has already infected said people who wanted him dead - Bravo Sara, it seems the libido is the only great thing about you.
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