Wednesday, August 20, 2014

{Review} FAIRYDUST by Simon R. Taylor

ISBN #: 978-0956647795
Page Count: 640
Copyright: November 4, 2013
Publisher: Bluebox Publishing

Book Summary:
(Taken from Goodreads)

As the elves face extinction due to a natural crisis, their belligerent king is bent on self-preservation. It falls to reluctant hero Daniel to go in search of the White Fairy – his last hope for answers and his people’s last chance for a future.

An unforgettable cast of fairy tale creatures come together in this ground-breaking epic fantasy. With never-before-seen storytelling techniques, Fairydust is packed full of ingenious, inventive layouts and concepts which reflect the twists in the rich, fast-moving plot.

Fresh from his acclaimed thriller debut End from the Beginning, Taylor once again blends heart-stopping action, gut-wrenching passion and side-splitting humour – this time held together with a sprinkling of fairy dust. Join him for a journey the like of which the world has never seen before.

Mandy's Review:

Once upon a time, there was a male born in Scotland. He grew up in a very religious environment and exuded intelligence beyond his years. Before he reached the 30th year of his birth, he had written and published two different novels. Fairydust being the most recent work of this young man.

With Fairydust, Simon explored the world of fairies, trolls, dwarves, elves, wizards, warlocks, a ruling monarch, a long-time battle between two species of beings, along with a dabble of religious references. This world had many interesting characters who were introduced to the reader almost instantly. Having all of these introductions so suddenly can cause confusion in a reader. As the reader continues deeper into the story, the characters begin to stay separated in his/her mind allowing the reader to get to know a bit more about them.

As with all fairytales, there must be a hero and a damsel in distress. Both make their appearances here. Daniel is slated to be the hero, but things don't always work out the way we think they should. What his quest did do was create a renewed confidence inside him ... but can he save the day?

The aforementioned damsel is the elven princess, Maria. Although, when you enter into a dangerous journey of your own free will because you're too headstrong to listen to your father, you're not much of a damsel in distress, are you?

You may have noticed that this book is quote lengthy. 640 pages is quite a bit to read, I'll grant you. There were a couple factors, though, that made this novel easy to traverse. First, we have the Story Goblin. I'll admit, at first he was a bit annoying. There were moments where I just wanted the story to continue and up pops the Story Goblin sticking his stinky nose in the middle of the story. He did make things interesting overall, so I can't be too upset by his intrusions.

The main feature that made this novel more manageable was the varying chapter designs throughout the book. For example (and I'll try not to give too much away) there was one point in the story where a couple characters were in a very dark cave. As they progressed further into darkness, the background of the chapter slowly transformed from the standard white page with black text into a black page with white text. This is only one example of many. Each of these helped the reader visualize what was happening at that moment in the story. A bit genius, I'd say.

For those of you still leery about reading this 640-page novel, let me put your fears to rest. I, too, was a bit daunted when I received the novel and noticed its girthy size. There were times where I didn't feel like I was making any progress at all. Chapter 14 changed my whole perspective. This particular chapter is the longest one of the entire novel (almost 200 pages), however it is also the fastest chapter you will read in Fairydust. 'How is that even possible?' you may ask. Well, now, it would be much of an adventure for you if I sat here and told you all the secrets, would it? I will say that once I finished Chapter 14, the remainder of the book seemed to fly.

Overall, even though I started reading this novel apprehensively, I wound up really enjoying Fairydust. I can picture teens reading this novel and falling in love with the story because of all the characters. I would also recommend this novel to those of you who enjoy a bit of fantasy with subtle religious undertones intermingled in a couple spots. You'll only recognize them, though, if you're familiar with stories of the Bible.

*A physical copy of this novel was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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