Sunday, November 15, 2009

Bones of Faerie by Janni Lee Simner (3/5 stars)

I had been wanting to read this book for a long time. Overall it is an interesting book with a creative premise. I thought it was okay, but it didn't blow me away.

It's been twenty years since the fairies destroyed the human world by suffusing everything with wild magic; and twenty years since we did worse to their world. Liza is a girl raised in a town where magic is feared. Anyone with magic is killed. Then Liza's mother gives birth to a baby with silver spun hair and the baby is left to die. After that things start to change. Liza's mother leaves, leaving Liza with her abusive father; then the unthinkable starts to happens, Liza starts to show signs of having magic herself. When she flees the village and wanders into the woods after dark; disobeying the greatest rule of their village, she has no more thought than to escape and find her mother. But what happens when she finds out that her village's way of life isn't the only way of life? What happens when she finds out about the truth behind the magic?

The premise propelling the plot is amazingly creative. A post-apocalyptic world where the final war between fairy and humans tears the world apart. I love how magic suffused every aspect of the world making it dangerous and desperate. The ways that Simner came up with to incorporate magic into deadly seeds and plants was well done. Unfortunately outside of this, I didn't like much else about this book.

The characters were kind of dull. Even Liza is pretty tame until she finally stands up to her father; which takes a long time. They were okay, just not all that interesting or all that engaging. The writing style was very simplistic and this is a very short book. Really I felt like I was reading a book for younger children, except that the topics that the book dealt with (abuse, world destruction, and death) were much to heavy for a younger age set. I guess I just felt like the writing style dumbed down this fabulous concept way too much. Also the focus of the book is very narrow, involving only a few people in a small area. The scope of the world destruction felt like it should involve, well, the whole world. We never got to see outside of the tiny sphere that made up the characters' lives.

Overall is was an interesting idea that was done in a child-like way; the result for me was an okay story but nothing to write home about. I am glad I was exposed to the idea, I wish it had been implemented with more depth and more engaging characters.

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