Survive the Cursed

These Cursed Origins Book 1

Fiction - Dystopia
242 Pages
Reviewed on 03/31/2023
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Ashton Abbott is an anxiety ridden hot mess most of the time. I can say that because I’m talking about myself. This is kind of therapeutic.

I write paranormal romance, dark fantasy, post-apocalyptic paranormal romance, and horror in the near future. I like to think I write on the grittier side of things. Is grittier a word? I guess this is my book so I can do whatever I want. Grittier is officially a word according to this book. Geez I’m bad at this. Ok, about me.

I am a Mom to two beautiful hellions. I have a smokin’ hot husband. I love them even though they can have an attitude sometimes. Honestly, it’s karma because so do I. How long does this thing have to be?

I enjoy reading and gaming when I have a moment to actually take a breath and chill. Epson salt baths! I play the shit out of some Minecraft.

I actually genuinely love hearing from my readers so don’t be shy! I post a ton of memes on my Facebook page and am not above getting into best meme contest so feel free to challenge me. BYYYEEEE!

    Book Review

Reviewed by Pikasho Deka for Readers' Favorite

Survive the Cursed is book one in the These Cursed Origins series by Ashton Abbott. The story is set in a post-apocalyptic dystopia where humanity is on the brink of extinction, and witches, zombies, vampires, and werewolves roam the lands looking to wipe out the last vestiges of humanity. Avery Winters is a twenty-one-year-old soldier groomed and trained since childhood to kill monsters. Her father, Dr. Winters, is the head scientist at one of the last settlements of humans at Eglin Air Force Base in the Florida panhandle. Having lost many friends in reconnaissance missions, Avery begins to question her father's motivations after encountering his latest subject, a mysterious vampire named Mattias, who is unlike any other monster Avery has encountered. With her conflicted feelings and newfound abilities, Avery must now choose where her true loyalties lie.

Action, horror, and romance seep through the pages of Ashton Abbott's first installment of this post-apocalyptic supernatural thriller series. Survive the Cursed is a fast-paced nail-biter of a story that will keep you glued to the pages from start to finish. Abbott captures the setting of a hypothetical futuristic dystopian world spectacularly, infusing supernatural elements into it to make it all the more unsettling and terrifying for us. The story is told in a first-person narrative style through the eyes of the main protagonist, Avery Winters, who faces the dilemma of having to choose between her friends and family and her conscience. I enjoyed it, and if you're a fan of supernatural romance thrillers, I urge you to grab a copy.

Stephanie Chapman

Ashton Abbott created a dark world in Survive the Cursed (These Cursed Origins Book 1). Avery Winters is a soldier who fights supernaturals. Her father, Dr. Robert Winters, was the head scientist at Eglin Air Force Base and was known for the tests he conducted on captive supernaturals. After capturing a witch necromancer, Avery finds herself on a reconnaissance mission looking for supplies. The squad comes under siege from zombies and a vampire while exploring a warehouse. During the battle, Avery and Nate have to behead their fallen comrades. The next day, Avery is horrified to learn that they have to return to the warehouse. Oddly, they find it empty until they enter a side room, where a different vampire is chained to the wall. After its capture, Avery develops a friendship with the vampire. A voice begins haunting her, along with the screams of people she couldn’t save.

Ashton Abbott’s creativity shines in the depiction of Avery’s inner turmoil. She remains loyal to her father throughout. He interrogates her after every mission, pulling readers deeper into the story. The vivid details of each moment assault every sense. I could smell the rotting flesh of the zombies, feel the crunch of bone, and see the pleading eyes of the victims as they knew they were going to die. The suspense is heightened by the taunts of the necromancer’s riddles aimed at Avery. Despite the dark contents, there are moments of humor with witty remarks exchanged between Avery and her squad members. The more time she spends near the captives, the more I noticed human traits emerging and I wondered whether Avery’s father was trying to change them back. Unpredictable twists caused me to question my theories repeatedly. The conclusion leaves so many possible scenarios that the sequel could pick up anywhere. I recommend Survive the Cursed (These Cursed Origins Book 1) to readers who enjoy dark fantasy thrillers with graphic violence.

Jamie Michele

Survive the Cursed by Ashton Abbott is a dystopian supernatural thriller that revolves around a post-apocalyptic survivor named Avery Winters and is the first book in the These Cursed Origins series. The world as humans knew it is gone. In a wave too fast and traumatic for Avery to process, the rise of the previously unthinkable monsters, colloquially known as 'supers', overtakes the human race to the point where only small pockets of human survivors exist. Vampires, werewolves, elemental witches, zombies, and the ultra-elusive creature called the Fifth are what humanity is up against. Or was up against, as the human population has been very nearly all snuffed out. But that part was almost entirely achieved by mankind. Avery is now a young woman and a footsoldier in the fight to survive against the armies of supers who stepped out of the dark. But when a near-death experience triggers a conversation with the monster who could have killed her, Avery begins to reconsider the mindset that's been systemically molded into pure hatred and unfettered violence.

Well, this is not what I was expecting at all. I picked up Survive the Cursed because, in the interests of full disclosure, I believed author Ashton Abbot had taken the supernatural genre and all of the monsters she employed too far. Yes, the cornucopia of multiple paranormal beings is ambitious, but the truth is that Abbot weaves them together in a story that is exceptionally well done. It is both a survivalist story and a cautionary tale of conditioning and blind adherence to what we are told to believe. It is a nuanced nod at xenophobia and the fear of the 'others' to a spectacularly frenzied degree. It is also about how a young woman is able to start seeing beyond the macro point of view and approach the problem on the same micro level that people have always learned to come together, but this time with supers. It starts with a name. Asking questions and actively listening to the answers. It's reminiscent of a neighbor whose name we only know because sometimes we accidentally get their mail, but they do not look like we do, and their home smells a little funny when they open the door. But then we start talking and, slowly, over time, we see that we were wrong. I love social messages wrapped up in excellent thrillers with faultless prose and look forward to seeing where Abbott takes us next.