The themes were good. The resolution at the end was satisfying. But. The writing tried too hard to be literary while using very casual language that didn’t fit with the slightly pretentious metaphors on the same page. The author would have done so much better to simply tell the stories of these interesting characters.
Bottom line: if the author can relax and simply tell a story for the story’s sake, she’s going to write some memorable books in the future. If she keeps trying to write highbrow descriptive literature, then her word usage, characters, and plots are going to have to ALL live up to that goal simultaneously for her to achieve it.