- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
Posted April 11, 2012
Aniela is Princess of Edaion, an island where people who have magic come to live. Her father and mother rule, her brother is being groomed to take over and her sister is the prima donna of the family. There is family drama going on, and all Aniela wants to do is graduate high school, keep her orphanage school going, and find a job that will let her have time to do what she wants. But her mother has other ideas and pushes her, demands she do other things, and throws tantrums when things do not go her way.
Aniela befriends Odette, a new student who is blind and who is trying to find out what her magic is. She draws mysterious pictures and has seizures. Her brother, Leocardo, worries about her and joins forces with Aniela to find out what is going on with his sister. The deeper they go, the stranger the story gets.
This is one of two stories about Aniela and Leocardo, the other being seen through Leocardo's eyes. I did not read that one and I'm curious as to how the story changed.
This book started out slow and I found it tedious as the family dynamics were settled and all the beginnings of the story were laid out. Since this is YA, I'm not sure that it will hold a young reader's attention to the point where the story begins to get really moving with all the challenges to Odette and Aniela. There were questions about how Odette and Leo came to be in Edaion and what Leo's own magic is.
I think that some of my questions might be answered in the other book. I wonder if this story might have been better presented in a double-book issue instead of separate books. Especially as it is a YA, it may be confusing to readers to have to look up and buy two books to get the entire story.
I do think the author has a good grasp of writing and flow, it was easy to read and everything seemed to be in place. On the publisher's point, I had a problem with the typeface being san-serif (arial) and it seemed that random words were bold and larger type for no apparent reason. This was distracting and can only be placed on the head of the editors and publishers.
I liked it, I just wish I got the whole story.
Posted March 3, 2012
First of all, this book is an adult book, but it's not necessarily just for adult readers. There is very little foul language (and what little is present is confined to one character), it's simply that some of the concepts are more for older readers. However, I would recommend this book to a lot of my more mature friends who love fantasy books.
I loved the premise of the story, which is pretty much the reason I accepted the invitation to participate in the tour. I don't usually review adult books, even if I do read them, but the background of the story and the format it came in intrigued me. The two volumes sharing the same story from different points of view, the mystery entwined with a little romance and adventure? Plus, a whole lot of family secrets, from what hints this volume - especially the ending! - gave me. The cover is epic. I love the relevance it has to the story. It's edged in black, there's tons of drawings and paper on it, and even the font is captivating.
The writing itself was pretty unique. There was a lot of voice put into the work, but the style of the writing would make it very easy for younger readers to make sense of the book. Despite some eloquence, the writing was very down-to-earth and likeable for that reason. There were some parts that confused me and I had to reread in order to understand it, but for the most part, it was simple. That was enjoyable for me. I didn't have to really work to read the book because it flowed in a way that lead me from chapter to chapter without me even noticing that I had read that far. I would set a limit for myself, saying "Okay, just one chapter, and then you have to do your homework." Yeah, needless to say, that didn't work.
I also enjoyed the unique relationship between each character and how I could decipher each of them simply from Aniela's point of view. Sometimes the POV changed to slightly more omniscient in order to give more insight since it was written in third person, but for the most part, Aniela's understanding of her family and of her friends easily told me everything I needed to know about everyone else.
Possibly the only thing I didn't reallly like about the book was that there were some teasers about family secrets and unknown things in the very beginning that were then forgotten about until the very last chapter. It was a great teaser at the end, which makes me REALLY want to read the sequel, but I felt a little empty after not reading about it at all, almost as though the author forgot about it (which they obviously didn't, but still).
I still would absolutely love to read the other volume of the book, Through the Eyes of Leocardo Reyes by Ermisenda Alvarez. I think that it would definitely give more insight into the story than simply reading one volume or the other, although that was okay to do. I think I'll enjoy the story more if I read both.
All in all, I really enjoyed the book, and I'd recommend it to adults and young adults as well. If you like fantasy (magic, foreign lands, and intense supernatural gifts) then this book was written with you in mind.