I feel that I have to tell you something about myself before I tell you my thoughts on this book. I hate romance books. I really do. I went through a rebellious stage of my life when my parents told me not to read them. This, of course, ensured that I would. My taste in books has changed over the years and since I started writing I’ve learned to read with a very critical eye. Story, characterisation and motivation are all very important things to me and I’ve read very few romance books which embrace those elements in a way which holds my interest.
I’m certainly not opposed to a bit of romance or even sex in a story. I just don’t like it when they dominate the story.
Love makes people stupid (in real life too). People make decisions that they wouldn’t make if their brains hadn’t turned to mush. I definitely had mushy brains when I met my husband, but I certainly wouldn’t make people sit through pages of description detailing my every little thought.
I don’t like it when everything in a story exists purely to drive forward the romantic entanglement. It’s usually pretty formulaic. Girl meets boy, they hate each other instantly but by chapter 7 they’re in bed. Then it all goes wrong, somebody saves someone’s life and they live happily ever after. Usually these types of books are riddled with angst-ridden thoughts of the protagonist. “Does he like me? Why won’t he be nice to me? Why won’t he tell me his feelings?” I find it all very cloying. I’m a woman of action. I want interesting things to happen. I don’t want to read pages and pages of details of the best orgasms these characters have ever had.
So, now you know.
I bet you think that I’m telling you all of this because I’m going to say some really horrible things about this book but am just trying to soften it. Shame on you. I would only write a negative blog post if the book was offensive. I’m actually telling you this so that you can understand why I only liked this book rather than loved it.
Nutshell blurb: Twin sisters Rin and Shani meet twin brothers Zash and Mior and embark on an adventure to find items for a mysterious ritual.
The writing in this novel is superb. I was actually shocked to find out that this was Miss Dakin’s first book. She clearly has a love for words and uses them effectively. I felt that the copious use of the f-bomb was a bit much, but perhaps that’s just my personal preference.
People who self-publish frequently get a bad rap. I’ve read quite a few self-published novels and in many cases I’ve noticed that the content is good but the delivery is clumsy. That is definitely not the case with this book. Flawless sentence structure and no typos. The writing was clear, concise and elegant.
This author also has some mad world-building skills. She created a believable world which had enough detail to be authentic but not so much as to be confusing. This is a very delicate balance which is difficult to get right. But she nailed it. The world contains humans, elves and half elves. The protagonist was a half elf who are considered the lowest of the low (which kind of made me think of Dragon Age, for those of you gamers out there).
I would really love to see this author write a story which focuses more on the fantasy aspect than the romantic one. I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for her other work as I think that she’s quite talented.