I received a copy of Neverdark to review as part of the Read it and Reap event from the Shut Up & Read community here on Goodreads.
This is a reall...moreI received a copy of Neverdark to review as part of the Read it and Reap event from the Shut Up & Read community here on Goodreads.
This is a really sweet little fairy tale with a bit of a modern twist where feisty fairy Princess Fiera sets off on a quest to save her kingdom and delivers a good environmental message along the way.
I really liked the world the author created and the variety of creatures Fiera meets on her journey. I thought the plot and tone were appropriate for a middle grade book (which it's intended to be), and I appreciated the strong female lead. I especially liked that the author managed to make her a take-charge kind of fairy, but without falling victim to the trend to make her tough by making her "anti" girly things. You can be tough and still like pink/dresses/whatever! Frustrates me to no end when books aimed at tween/teens perpetuate the opposite notion, but I digress. Happily, Einfeld does a good job with this balance; a huge plus in my opinion.
Makes me wish I had a tween girl to pass it along to; maybe my nephews will sit still long enough to listen.(less)
I received a copy of this book for review as part of the Read it and Reap event from the Shut Up and Read group here on Goodreads.
This is a modernized...moreI received a copy of this book for review as part of the Read it and Reap event from the Shut Up and Read group here on Goodreads.
This is a modernized retelling of Beauty and the Beast with a few new twists from the author. Much of the story will be familiar to anyone familiar with the Disney version; teenaged Bee is imprisoned in the mansion to save her family, stuck with the company of peculiar, amnesiac servants and the grumpy master of the house, and enlisted in helping break the curse that holds them all there. Happily, there are some additions - the parts of the story that take place with faeries, elves and witches in the Fey Lands, for instance - that keep this from having a been there, done that feel. (I would really love to see Ellison explore the Fey Lands further in future works!)
My main complaint with the book - which is quite short - was the pacing. The plot, particularly in the last 1/4 of the book, felt rather rushed and the ending was a little hollow because of that. The characters Ellison has envisioned for each role are interesting if slightly unexplored/underdeveloped in spots (again, probably to do with the shortness of the story). It's a positive sign that I was actually interested in knowing more about them, however. There were some times in the first 1/4 or so of the book where Ellison showed signs of SMS (Stephanie Meyer Syndrome - 'If one adjective is good, six must be better!!') but I was very pleased to see that didn't carry through the rest of the text.
Overall this was a fun, fast read that left me wanting to read more, both about these characters and from this author. I'd recommend it to fans of the BatB story, younger readers and people looking for a little light fantasy.(less)
I really did try, but this just wasn't for me. It was really the odd turns of phrase ('he grinned all over his face'? wha?) that did it, but combine t...moreI really did try, but this just wasn't for me. It was really the odd turns of phrase ('he grinned all over his face'? wha?) that did it, but combine that with tired plotting and lackluster characters and I ended up throwing in the towel. My to-read list is just too large to waste time finishing this one.(less)