- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Book Smugglers Publishing (March 20, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1942302460
- ISBN-13: 978-1942302469
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.5 x 7.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,511,598 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Keeper of the Dawn Paperback – March 20, 2017
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Unfortunately, the depth of the world-building didn't quite carry over to the characters for me, and I found myself feeling detached from them, which made me feel a little detached from the plot and apathetic in regards to the conflict. I think part of that may have had to do with the fact that the story often seems to rush through large passages of time in order to get to the next important scene, but I felt like I never had a chance to take a breath and get to know some of these characters a little better. There were several places where I wished the author had spent a little more time showing us important things that were happening.
Despite this, Gunn is a strong writer and I still enjoyed the story. Lai's romance with Tara was well written, and I enjoyed seeing it develop, even though, as with other aspects of the story, I wished we could have seen a little more of that development. If you enjoy stories with rich settings and you're looking for a quick escape into a fascinating world, this is definitely worth a read.
(Also--check out that cover art! It's gorgeous!)
*** MILD SPOILERS AHEAD ****
Where the story fails for me... just a little... is when the protagonist reaches her goal and becomes a Keeper of the Dawn. Right there, the tension bleeds out of the story a little. The plot is still focused, but it just isn't as interesting. I think that's because the antagonist of the story isn't a person, but rather the barriers that keep Lai from becoming a priestess. Once those barriers are surmounted, the rest of the story feels a bit superfluous. I mean, it's not extreme. I was still engaged in the Hero's Journey. But the lack of a well-developed antagonist hurts this book enough that I have to deduct a star. There is a "bad guy" in the story, but he needed to be more integral to the plot to give it tension.
Also, usually I'm not fond of dream sequences in a novel. I think authors cheat with those a little. But this book has several supernatural visions that enhance the plot and explain the fantasy background and they were done well and fun to read.
Anyway, my take on the story: Well worth the price for either a Kindle or paperback. I will not hesitate to pay for another piece of writing by this author.
Full marks on the cover art though. It is gorgeous!
I originally found this book on a list of queer-woman-led books, so I was interested to see how that would play out. I didn't feel into the romance at all, though. I could have done without it. But! I am still grateful that books with lesbian relationships are being created, and that I have the pleasure of reading them :)