A Dewdrop Away by C.A. Allen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
A Dewdrop Away, by C.A. Allen
Synopsis: Rupert has lived his entire life under the cruel reign of the black squirrels. When he finds out that the artifact that causes the immortality of his enemies is missing, he is sent on a quest to find it and claim it for his own. Rupert is determined to overthrow the evil Emperor Venul and rule justly in his stead, but he is warned by the wise white squirrel Zirreo to be cautious, for countless things can go wrong when holding an object of magic.
Years later, the Dark Wanderer, a shadowy figure claiming to be the servant of the squirrel goddess Astrippa, is loose in Arborand. When friends Mae and Flor accidentally cross paths with him, they get more than they bargained for when they discover that the darkest, wildest legends are often true.
Meanwhile, Theo, an orphaned half-breed squirrel, finds a compass that doesn’t point north and is compelled by a series of disturbing messages to set out with his faithful chipmunk servant Parris to follow where it leads.
What if inequality threatened to take over the land? What if the gods who ruled your childhood fears came to life? Would you bow down, or would you fight? What if fate gifted you with only one journey on which to find out?
In A Sentence: A decent debut novel, but could use some work.
Some Background Info: I've been going to this amazing, family-run coffee shop for all my ground coffee, and every time I went there this book would be by the counter. One of the employees there wrote this novel (as well as a sequel) and published it by herself. She even sells it on Amazon! I was impressed by this, so I went ahead and purchased my own copy. I figured that I'd be supporting a young and local author, and who knows? This book might even be good!
What I Think: Honestly this book wasn't all that bad! The storyline was interesting, and the plot went in directions that differed from the norm. I would say this was a middle school read, but some things happened that I wouldn't expect to happen in a middle school read. There was a good amount of action, nothing over the top, and the story moved along nicely. I liked how it was divided into three "books", and each book followed a different character, or set of characters. The characters were likeable enough, the villains were reasonably evil. It really wasn't all that bad.
This Is A New Author However..... This author is young, and her writing style isn't mature yet. So the story comes out a little abrupt and unfinished. Plus, there's some modern slang that managed to slip in. Words like "lame" and "weird" seemed a little out of place, and there were several parts, particularly the endings, where I thought she could have embellished more, providing a few more details to fill the story out a bit.
Overall: This author has potential, but she needs to refine her writing style a bit more. If she had taken this to a publisher, rather than publishing it herself, she would have had to make some revisions to make it run a bit more smoothly. Plus, they would have caught some small grammatical errors that were in the book. I liked the story, and I think middle schoolers would enjoy it too, but it's not a fantastic read.
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