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Luminous Hardcover – June 30, 2011

3.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Dawn Metcalf lives in Connecticut with her family. This is her first novel.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Juvenile; 1 edition (June 30, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525422471
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525422471
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.3 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #455,780 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dawn Metcalf has no good excuse for the way she writes. She lived in a normal, loving, suburban home, studied hard, went to college, went to graduate school, got married, had babies, and settled down in northern Connecticut. Despite this wholesome lifestyle, she has clearly been corrupted by fairy tales, puppet visionaries, British humour, and graphic novels. As a result, she writes dark, quirky, and sometimes humorous speculative fiction.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I was drawn to this book by the beautiful cover and then read the synopsis and found it intriguing. I actually received an Advanced Reading Copy of it through Librarything's Early Reviewer Program. It was a very creative book and has some intriguing ideas in it; although at points the writing is a bit hard to follow.

Consuela finds a lump at the back of her neck and is worried about it. Her mother agrees that Consuela will go to the doctor if it is worse in the morning. Then Consuela finds that she can put her fingers into the lump and actually remove all of her skin; leaving her a glowing Skeleton. She finds she can makes new skins out of things like water and air. While experimenting she ends up meeting other teenagers with strange powers and finds herself part of the Flow. A serial killer is loose in the Flow and Consuela must figure out how to stop the killer, otherwise she may never have the chance to return home.

This was an odd book. It is very creative and has some really neat ideas in it. At times it is beautifully written and has some excellent imagery. At times though there were also things that didn't make sense. Why only teenagers in the Flow? Why was she able to talk to her mother when she got home in the beginning but not later?

The idea of the Flow is interesting, but I have to say it is a bit difficult for the reader to figure out what is going on at the beginning of the book. The reader needs to suspend disbelief and kind of just..well..go with the flow of the story. As the book went on I understood better the kind of "other place" the author was trying to create, but it did take some piecing together to get to that point.

The characters are intriguing. All of them have different powers and complex backgrounds.
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Format: Hardcover
"Know Thyself" Consuela hears these words whispered out to her from a changing room mirror. This is when her life starts to change. She goes home to take a bath and when she wakes up everything it different. She finds herself in a place called the Flow. Here are people that are somewhere between life and death and are called upon to save others from death. Consuela finds that to help with her saving people, she can remove her own skin and make a new one out of practically anything; fire, feathers, air, all become her wardrobe. Everyone in the Flow is happy and helpful, and though she misses home, she doesn't totally mind being in the Flow. Then the murders start and everything spins into chaos. No one knows what is happening or who is doing it. If they aren't stopped though, the Flow could be completely destroyed along with everyone in it.

This was a very interesting concept, it is a nice take on near-death experience. It would be fantastic to change and create skins as Consuela does, so much freedom and adventure. So there are a couple of reasons I had to rate this low. One thing that bugged me was that Dawn Metcalf tends to repeat herself a lot throughout the whole novel. It is an ARC, and maybe all the repeats are cut out in the finished copy, but I doubt it. There just seems to be a tendency to reiterate things that had already been said within the same chapter, page or paragraph. "He wasn't here, yet, but like a shark with blood in the water, Tender could smell betrayal in the Flow. Wish knew--Tender wasn't here, but would be soon. And, like a shark, Tender was made for killing." That sort of thing happened more often than I would have liked. Characters would come to a conclusion and then come to that conclusion a few pages later and so on and so forth.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Quick & Dirty:

-Repetitive descriptions that manage to miss key points

-Running around as a skeleton is strange and kinda creepy

-The main relationship was weird and...just bland

-Decent story with an interesting concept, you might want to wait for the authors next book though.

Long & Wordy:

Fair warning, there are things in here some people would consider spoilers so just a heads up. That and this is a bit of a jumbled mess, there just isn't a good order to put it all in.

The general idea of this book is that Consuela goes into a coma on Earth and ends up in the Flow which is this between worlds type of place where the 'residents' (about 5 or 6 total, all from English speaking countries, if not just the US...that's never explained but it is a very elite club) anyway these residents are pulled back to Earth on occasion to come and keep us lowly humans from committing suicide. But don't call them angels because they will go back and mock you while getting smashed on alcohol. Consuela can't wait to bust out of this imperfect world so she can go home, and gets the offer...from the one guy trying to destroy the world! But why would he save her? Probably because he can't figure out how to kill a skeleton...

So there are lots of things about this book that I liked and plenty of other things that just rubbed me the wrong way.

Liked: The idea of her being able to change her strengths
Disliked: Her pulling off her skin and running around as a skeleton
Liked: Being able to harness elements
Disliked: The descriptions, they were very wordy about some parts but lets take her air skin for example, she's a SKELETON do you see THROUGH the air to her bones or does she BECOME air?
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