- File Size: 475 KB
- Print Length: 198 pages
- Publisher: Puppet Strings Publishing; 1 edition (May 29, 2014)
- Publication Date: May 29, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00KOA2F1I
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #367,179 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$8.99|
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Elijah Dart: Angel of Death Kindle Edition
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The story is cute. Elijah is kind of a precious, cinnamon bun, so there's an adorable incongruence with him being the new Grim Reaper/Angel of Death, which is the role he'll eventually take over from his father in a sort of morbid passing down of the family business. The Darts have their own personal cemetery (not suspicious AT ALL), and a groundskeeper/butler who reminds me of Dampé from Ocarina of Time. Elijah stumbles upon a reaper reunion in said graveyard prior to finding this out on his birthday, which also happens to be Halloween. Things escalate or rather descend from there.
I will usually finish a book if I’ve read more than half of it, but I decided I’d set this one aside today even though I was slightly over that threshold. I adore Mr. Ferrera's whimsical writing style, but it was a little too heavy handed in the religious aspect for me. I prefer my angels of death to reap more and proselytize less. I was also a little put off by the “magic is evil” motif. I'd recommend it to the mid-grade crowd with the hope they'd have the curiosity to question the magic issue and whomever they asked had the wherewithal to quell such notions. We are living in the post Harry Potter age now, so I'm far less concerned.
Elijah Dart is a curious mix of humor and darkness which Jonathan Ferrara mixes together quite deftly. Using death as a central theme has been done by many authors with varying levels of success. Jonathan has taken this theme and added a uniqueness of its own, which I found refreshing. Elijah is such an appealing character, that what he goes through in the book really tugged at my heartstrings. Even before finding out his legacy, Elijah is a misfit. He's just turned that awkward age of fourteen, his family lives next to a graveyard, and he doesn't have any friends. Even his two older brothers bully him. When you add to that mix that he's destined to become the Angel of Death, well, you can understand him freaking out a bit. But, he pulls himself together pretty quickly and accepts the mantle which has been forced upon him. Helping him is a rather special dog named Grim. Their relationship provides some of the most humorous moments in the book. While they share a mutual disdain for one another in the beginning, the way their relationship develops is truly touching. The mythology behind the story is compelling and original and will appeal to teens. Like the author's previous book: The Blackwell Family Secret, it finds its basis in Christianity, and once again, the combination of religion and the supernatural makes the story even more interesting. Jonathan adds some intriguing twists which really had me thinking. What brings everything together though are the family dynamics. Gregory and Helena Dart are phenomenal parents, even if Helena's a terrible cook, and they won't let their kids participate in Halloween festivities. They adore all their children and are extremely supportive. Cory and Steven are Elijah's older twin brothers and reminded me of slightly scarier versions of Fred and George Weasley. The youngest of the siblings is little Myra who shows herself to be wise beyond her six years at times. There's also Grandma Dart (who interjects her own brand of humor), and finally the mysterious Cousin Patricia and her daughter Hayden, who is the closest thing to a friend that Elijah has. All these characters form a solid foundation behind Elijah in one form or another. Putting the finishing touches on this entertaining story are Aaron Ferrara's whimsical illustrations which begin each chapter. He also created the beautiful cover art. Young teens will identify with Elijah and be enchanted with his adventures. I also think that adults who read YA fiction will enjoy this promising new book. I'm looking forward to reading more about Elijah in the second book, Elijah Dart: Carnival of Bones, due Fall 2015.
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