Author: Rita Stradling
Genre: Young adult, Fantasy
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
I really wanted to like this more. The initial concept, a curse that makes everyone forget you and everything you touch (including yourself) leeches colour, is really cool. I like the setting and overall idea. But it seems to me that Rita Stradling is great at developing cool concepts and plots; and that's where her greatness ends. Colorless is filled with characters that could almost be interesting and side stories that have potential; yet when it comes to actual execution of these ideas everything seems to fall apart.
Now that's not to say this isn't readable. It's quite readable. Action packed and again a cool concept. But Stradling is missing that 'something' that makes a writer a really great writer. If I didn't know better I'd think she was really new to writing (which she is not). I just wish she could up her game somehow and have loveable characters, and meaningful relationships.
A note on language
Stradling is the latest author, in a string of young adult books I've read recently, to use archaic words. Now I read a lot of historical fiction and am no slouch when it comes to vocabulary and Latin root words (I speak French and English) but it irritates me when authors use words randomly just to seem cool. In Colorless the use of anni (year) and annos (years) annoyed me to no end. It just felt unnecessary. It's not like your teaching anyone words that will ever be used in regular English! I get it when middle school books use larger or more complex words, because they are teaching. But by the time you're at the level of this book there is just no reason for it anymore. So take things like ornery, anni and candor elsewhere. You're not impressing anyone.
Back to the plot
There's also a weird thing that happens near the end that made me go 'What!?!'. It felt a little out of the blue. Looking back there was maybe a hint or two towards this outcome but I felt less like it was a twist and more like it was thrown in because she didn't know what else to do to give this book some closure.
Colorless is book one in a new series. Would I read the next one? I'm really not sure. Maybe... but it wouldn't be at the top of my must read list.
Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.