Title: The Book of Whispers
DNF @ 61%
There's a distinct oddness to this book. It's a YA book set during the crusades. We have a lead gal and guy from very different walks of life. I was really enjoying the demons and stories of our characters right up until they met each other (45% in). And then all of a sudden the magic was gone. Yet ironically the introduction of a lot of convenient magic shortly after that is what turned me off in the end.
I love fantasy, but magic needs to be used so as not to just set-up convenient ways to travel, time to change, items to only work for some, etc. It's like every magical thing that happens in this book is very convenient. As this is one of my biggest pet peeves ever I decided I was done with The Book of Whispers.
It may very well have an amazing and profound ending but getting there just got too difficult. The last couple days I've thought to read this book my response is very dull. Like I'm not really interested. Once I'm reading that improves but it's almost like this book is a slump in and of itself.
I am giving it two stars, even though I didn't finish it.
I have a few reasons for still liking much of it:
1) the writing is quite good. I would look forward to and read a future book by Kimberley Starr.
2) our two main characters are interesting people. They could use a bit more depth and emotion during their POV scenes but overall I didn't dislike either of them.
3) the demon concept is interesting and ties in very well to the time period. The crusades were a time of massive superstition, religious war and all around distrust. The setting is well chosen.
The main things that need improving:
1) as discussed above, not using magic as a convenient excuse for plot to happen
2) the adults surrounding our two teens need to have a bit more development to really add depth to the story.
3) historical facts are pretty few and far between in this. If you're going to use a famous time in history it's best to make sure you really understand why it happened.
4) there is excitement missing from this book. Lots of exciting things happen but somehow I didn't get excited during them. A great writer makes you feel what your characters feel and puts you in the scene and story.
Overall if you are very intrigued by the book blurb then check it out. But if you have hundreds of other books to read I'd skip this one. That said I would still read Starr again in the hopes that her writing improves. I think there is real potential for her and I hope to see more from her.
Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.