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Crystallum by Laney McMann

Crystallum

Book Info

Title: Crystallum (Primordial Principles, Book 1)
Author: Laney McMann
Published: November 30, 2015
Pages: 239
Publisher: Booktrope
Publisher’s Website: link
Rating: ★★★

Review

Kadence Sparrow has a secret. It’s one that she hopes no one will ever find out, but it’s also one she doesn’t completely understand. When she is forced to move because her father’s job transfers him, she plans to guard her secret as always. But Cole Spires knows something is different about Kade, and he also knows she needs his protection. Both Kade and Cole are different, but they’re also different from each other. And the two of the crossing paths means that their worlds are going to be opened up to a whole range of possibilities neither of them ever knew or believed was possible. But it just might trigger a war of celestial proportions in the process.

I enjoy young adult fantasy, but I also think it’s the genre for which I find myself being the most critical when I read it. Part of the reason is that there are so many elements that come up time and time again–even in stories with more original plot lines–that it can sometimes be frustrating. Crystallum gives us something different in terms of its story. The world in which it takes place drew me in, and the whole Celestial Children and Primordials seemed to be an interesting concept. But we’ve hints of a love triangle and the age old star-crossed lovers trope here, and it runs quite deep. Thankfully, the overall story balances that out, which allowed me to enjoy this one, but it’s there. And I feel compelled to warn for it.

That said: if you like YA fantasy, you’ll probably enjoy this. It’s billed as the first book in a series, and I am curious to find out what happens next.

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]

The Demon Door by Kim Alexander

25392871Title: The Demon Door (Powers of the Air, Book 1)
Author: Kim Alexander
Published: June 16, 2015
Publisher: Booktrope
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Review:

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.]

Eriis, world of the demons, and Mistra, world of the humans, used to be connected by a door. But when that door was blasted shut by the humans, leaving desolation in Eriis, there are those who would give anything to get the door open again. When the Prince of Eriis, Rhuun, is found to be the potential key, he escapes to Mistra, finally getting a chance to see the humans he’s always been curious about, a curiosity further heightened by the romance novel that was left behind in Eriis when the humans left. But the world of Mistra is like nothing Rhuun imagined and he has no idea if he’ll ever get back to Eriis again.

This is an extremely slow moving story. Which, as it is posited as the start of an epic series, that may not necessarily be a bad thing. But the problem is it gets to the end and doesn’t feel like enough of the story has been told. There is just so much lead up that when the book ends–even though there is a sequel in store–it feels like a bit of a letdown.

That said, there is some amazing world building here and the character development is something for which I give a great deal of credit. Despite the pacing and lack of action, it kept me to the end.