I wasn’t sure about this story. I was skeptical because it seemed a bit long and the author is very new to me, but it turns out I shouldn’t have been. This is a very interesting story about a parallel world that only a few, on both sides, know about.
There were a lot of things that I liked about this story and a few that I didn’t, but those were minor. Kailey is a young, funny, lovable woman who recently suffered an appalling physical assault. Still in a depressed phase (because really folks that’s not easy to come back from), she decides to go out for dinner with her best friend Amber. This is the beginning of her new rollercoaster life. After meeting the massively persuasive Gunthreon in the backroom (don’t even ask what she was doing back there), Kailey finds out that there is another place called Renhala where traveling to can be done by a single word. Along with her dog Kioto, Kailey is swept up into the fight of her life – saving Renhala and its people.
What I really liked about this story was getting to know Kailey and the people she met along the way. The character development was done really well and other world building (lots of imagery) was absolutely wonderful. Relatively early it’s revealed to Kailey that she’s not human and is in fact one of the people of Renhala. She takes this news pretty well and just keeps on trucking. As a karmelean, with slowly developing powers, she soon comes into her own. I thought there was a plausible back story of Renhala’s existence and how they’ve maintained their invisibility from the human world; even more important to me was that the story line was really well plotted out.
Kailey’s mom was one of my favorite characters, talk about a fighter! There are many other characters… Like Russell, Gunthreon’s grandson who had a thing going on with Amber. (Speaking of Amber, I don’t know what best friend school she came from but I would have thrown her back a long long long time ago.) There’s Bu, a chocolate tasting, rotten egg smelling, lovable greble… and Greer, the blue eyed cantankerous dragon. Then Philip, the sometimes seven year old neighbor boy who can transform into Ladimer the healer – with his looking like a blond Norse god hottie – le sigh.
What I didn’t enjoy so much was the slow pacing of the story. This is told in first person and while I think that Lutchen did a wonderful job, there is only so much inner monologue that I can take for this length of a story.
Overall, I enjoyed this book and I would definitely recommend it if you’re in the mood for a something a little different but good. Oh yeah, by the way, xnay on the horizontal mambo.
Happy Reading Folks!
*Book provided by author for review
Renhalaby Amy Joy LutchenRelease Date: September 27, 2012