Publishing Date: January 2014
Publisher Description: Kate Archer, owner-operator of the vintage wooden carousel, is caught up in the excitement—and is quite possibly the cause of it. Because Kate leads a double life, as carny, and as Guardian of the land. Her recent return to the home she had forsaken has changed the town’s luck—for the better—and energized the trenvay—earth and water spirits who are as much citizens of the Beach as their mundane counterparts.
But the town’s new energy isn’t the only change afoot. Joe Nemeier, the local drug lord, whose previous magical consultant was vanquished by Kate, has acquired a new ally—and this one plays with fire.
Review: Hmmm. Quandary time. Great writer, superb prose, great character development………..that should all add up to a very riveting novel. It just doesn’t and here is why. Pages and pages of diatribe on carousels, theme park business management, history, and overly descriptive scene development. The author does a really great job of rendering this particular world but not really needed IMHO. It just drags the whole story-line down. I just don’t think readers are really interested in how an amusement park works (hiring practices, ride maintenance, technicians, hiring’s etc.) and the subsequent characters that work there if they are not relevant to the story. Nor are readers interested in town meetings that discuss topics not relevant to the premise of the novel (ex. Guardian Kate vs. X). The cover art is really juvenile. Kate looks like a pubescent albino with narcolepsy. The rooster referent I get but not really the best idea to put it on the cover. And who the f*ck is that dude behind her? David Copperfield jr.?
When the action unfolds, it is very apparent that the author has a great sense of developing creative action with regard to magic use. It is just so sporadic throughout the novel, that you almost yearn for it to appear amidst the pages of filler. There is so much non-relevant filler that the first 40% of the novel is Kate wandering the town involved in the carousel, pining for Borgan, yacking about and to, her Gran and Mom, and going to meetings. When she conducts spell development training with Belignatious, you are instantly involved and riveted. Then all of a sudden, it’s over. Ho Hum, back into town she goes to yap about inconsequential events.
This novel leaves you perplexed in that when the story draws you in, it all of a sudden drops your interest as the character just moves on without regard to what just occurred. The author does not take you anywhere past what concerns her most i.e. developing her town in Maine. For example, Kate gets a huge dose of magic and Borgan is there to help her out. He walks her out to the ocean and soon they are back on the beach headed to her house after a quick dip. Huh? No reason is given as to why and no descriptions follow of her time in the water, other than that she hangs on to his braid. Why not foray a bit into the Sea King’s world and throw in a couple of Ronsitbles for good measure. Mix it up with a lot of magic and magical creatures and minimize the townie shtick. This novel just gets real boring, real fast. Creative development and story-line were so poorly done that what could have been a 4 or 5 star review, plummeted quickly to 3 stars. If you read the first novel you mays as well get the second with no harm done. If you’re new to this series I recommend that you skip it.