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THE BAZAAR (Devany Miller Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 306 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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It is. Ms. Ponce not only has a truly boundless imagination, she has the ability to translate that imagery into words that immediately resound within the reader. You can’t mistake what’s going on regardless of the complexity of the situation. Her writing is vivid, urgent and concise so that even the most out of the box situation is perfectly clear and jig-saw puzzle perfect in design. The story is fast paced with snappy dialogue, and a real surprise and treat that awaits the reader – all, yes, every single one of the characters in this book are equally as complete and real, in their own way, as Devany.
I can’t conclude this review without mentioning the humor. It’s pervasive, it’s smart and the proverbial icing on the cake that caused me to lose my socks, a requirement for getting a five star review. If you’re a fan of magic, witches, fantastic imaginative stories and lots of funny lines, you’ll love this book – guaranteed. I can’t wait for the sequel!
Devany Miller is a modern woman who works for a domestic violence shelter. She's smart, she's sarcastic, she's full of wit and she has a crazy sense of humor. She has two kids she adores and a husband who doesn't deserve her. When she finds herself unwittingly pulled into the world of witches and magic, she is a reluctant participant, but then she blows you away with her....adaptability.
I don't want to give any spoilers, I just want to give kudos to Ms. Ponce for a great story - I'm looking forward to more adventures with Devany!
This is the story of Devany Miller, a mom and wife who works at a domestic violence shelter, who becomes a bad-ass magical being through a freak accident that implants her with the souls of a witch and a Great Spider (I'm thinking Hobbit here, but this spider has a personality), as well as a magical heart that amplifies any powers she uses. And, as if that's not interesting enough, she becomes the slave of a demon who constantly pushes her lust button just to mess with her and forces her to help him with some unseemly tasks.
Devany, however, is bent on freeing herself from slavery and her unfaithful husband, but in the process, she manages to befriend a vampire's head and its spouse, rescue her children from becoming fodder for magic, and tick off one head-honcho mother of demons. And that's just the highlights.
This is a fast-paced story with well-conceived dialogue. In some ways, it felt a little like the adventures of a more competent and self-confident, though reluctant, female version of Harry Dresden.
1. Creativity 4.5/5
There are some very amusing and creative elements of urban fantasy here. Gruesome creatures emerge from every shadow, and an undercurrent of violence and danger lurks in every encounter. In this alternate reality where witches and demons and magic exist, there are all kinds of forces and rules Devany does not understand. Throughout the book, she breaks these rules over and over again without knowing it, and this naiveté interjected both humor and dramatic tension. And, Devany herself is a unique character, but she still thinks she just a mom and soon-to-be divorcee. Her ignorance is enticing, and she uses it to her advantage.
2. Craft 5/5 stars
Ponce knows how to write dialogue so that you don't even realize you're reading dialogue. There's nothing stilted about it. And Devany's internal monologues were likewise as natural feeling. This is not literary fiction. It's pulp fiction for girls (or should I say grrls), and it unabashedly pulls no punches, offering a well crafted, action-driven and wild ride through Devany's world.
3. Characters 4.5/5 stars
Ponce has a skill for characterization. Devany is strong-willed, self-directed and decisive. From the very start of the book, we are thrown into the midst of the chaotic forces she contends with, and we experience her desires, disgust, confusion, disappointments and desperation right along with her. The souls within her, Neutria the spider and Arsinua the witch, each have their own distinct personalities that are completely different than Devany even though they are part of her. The banter between the three occasionally deserve a loud guffaw from the reader as their conversations are some of the best parts of this book.
The demon who enslaves Devany, Tytan, is one evil guy, but Ponce manages to create some sympathy for him later in the book as Devany's power grows. And Devany's arch-enemy, Ravana, is nothing short of pure, unadulterated, delightful wickedness.
Most of the minor characters are all very distinct from each other. They aren't quite stock characters, which was nice to see. I did think it funny, though, that Devany's philandering husband, Tom, has perhaps some of the weakest character development. But Devany was so over him by the end of the book that this didn't really matter and easily could have been intentional.
4. Plot 4/5 stars
The overall story arc has a couple of threads: Devany's new three-souled self and the "what the hell is she going to do now" thread, Devany's deteriorating relationship with Tom, her tumultuous relationship with Tytan, and her feud with Ravana. Devany does have an overall goal, although a simple one, but how she achieves it involves many twists and turns and fun encounters with magical powers and enticing creatures.
5. Organization 4.5/5
This book is pretty linear, though there's a wealth of action. Most of the twists were easy enough to follow, but here and there I did get a little lost, like when there was mention of being on an alien planet. I couldn't quite figure out if that was for real of figurative since Devany was traveling between different realms throughout the book.
6. Technicalities 4.5/5
This is a pretty well-edited book. I did take issue with a number of compound sentences joined with "but" that lacked commas, but sometimes I had to wonder if that was a stylistic choice since it did not detract much from the overall quality. Technically, though, there probably should have been commas before those "buts" says the soul of the Grammar Nazi in me.
Most recent customer reviews
Then things pick up fast. From beginning to end you are tied up in every word.Read more
A highly recommended book!