Reading Level: Young Adult
Size: 272 pages
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Stand Alone or Series: 1st book in The Nightbirds series
Source: eGalley from NetGalley.com
Rating: 4/5 stars
I got a copy of this book through NetGalley for review. I have read a lot of Tracy Hickman’s older books, but this sounded completely different. It was very different, but I ended up enjoying it quite a bit. It was well written and a quick engaging read.
This was an interesting story about young adult named Ellis who wakes up on a train going to the town of Gamin, she has no idea who she is and is struggling to piece together her life. In Gamin she finds herself in a strangely perfect, yet eerily not right world. No one will tell Ellis anything about herself but they all insist she knows them. She has to figure things out for herself though for her own good.
Entwined with all of the above are the murders of a series of artists that are becoming more and more frequent. The whole story has a pretty large twist at the end, which was surprising.
This was a good read, I enjoyed the Victorian flavor to the story and how the mystery surrounding Ellis and Gamin was unraveled. Ellis is very confused throughout the story so initially her personality is a bit weak, but as the story continued I really started to enjoy her as a character a lot.
The story is mostly a mystery, as Ellis tries to piece together the past. Then more and more magical and fantastical elements are introduced as Ellis uncovers numerous mysteries.
I do have a couple of complaints about the book. The first is that the pacing in the beginning is very slow, I felt like there wasn’t a ton that happened early on. My second complaint is that the story ends at a complete cliffhanger, so don’t expect any resolution at all. I absolutely hate cliffhangers like this, I don’t think they add anything to the story and are kind of disrespectful to the reader.
Overall this was an interesting and engaging story. I will most likely keep reading this series, I really enjoyed the writing style and the twist at the end of the story. I want to know more about this world. I do wish the pacing had been more consistent and was really disappointed in the cliffhanger ending. Recommended to YA fans who like fantasy mysteries.