A Writing Journey

The reviews found here are my personal opinions, not meant to hurt or detract from others. The act of writing a books is monumental, as anyone who has tried it knows. Having a book published, no matter if it is first for fortieth, is a feat to be celebrated. In this sense, the quality of the book does not matter. The authors who have written and published them (either through publishing houses or self) have bared their souls to the rest of us and I have no desire to hurt them, or people who enjoy their books. These reviews are so that people who have interest in a book, but are not sure if it is for them, can get a better idea. I will try my best not to include major spoilers, but I will include mentions of content that I find problematic, as well as content that shines. 

The Gossamer Mage, by Julie E. Czerneda is, ostensibly, about magic that is made by writing. But it is also a book about sacrifice. In this story, Scribe Mages make their magic by writing in the language of the Deathless Goddess and give up part of their lifespan for it to come to fruition (rather, part of their lifespan is stolen and they are happy to have it so). There is an evil that threatens the magic, the Goddess, and the whole land of which they are part.

Before I get to the bulk of my review, I’d like to talk about the first chapter. I have to admit, I almost stopped reading multiple times during this 70-page chapter. There are quite a few hurdles to getting into this book: the language (which smooths as you get further into the book), the choppy nature of the first chapter (lots of head-jumping here and throughout), and Cil. I have a problem with villainizing marginalized groups, and Cil falls into that category. He is the only autistic-coded character in this book. I don’t feel like I have enough experience or knowledge to talk in depth on the subject, but this is a problem that has existed in all sorts of fiction probably for as long as stories have been told and I am disappointed to see the problem continue. Yes, anyone can be a villain. But not at the expense of real people who could be (and probably are) harmed by negative portrayal and stereotypes.


The book starts with a smattering of characters, the only one of whom encouraged my reading was the bald mage Sael. I enjoyed that we got to see his fear, his kindness, his worry, and his humanity. I enjoyed his distaste for a wig, and that he was looking out for one of his students, and that the people around him clearly cared about him and liked him.

I was disappointed that there were no women characters in the first chapter (again, it was SEVENTY PAGES), but when Kait appeared in chapter two, I was satisfied. At first I thought she was another young woman character, but I was pleasantly surprised to realize she was at least well into adulthood. She was kind to those around her, hardworking, and determined to defeat the evil threatening her homeland. While her resolution did not hit quite right, I can see that it was foreshadowed at least once early on. 

My other favorite character comes late in the book. His name is Page and he is a mage. What I liked most about him was that he was not what anyone had expected. I don’t want to say too much about him, since if I do it will give away spoilers, but my favorite moment with him is when he is debating with his friend Mal (one of the main POV characters) and they keep citing sources to back up their arguments. It just felt particularly down-to-earth.

Other notable characters include Pylor (who I wish had a more important role than to be constantly afraid), Leksand (who felt a bit flat until the second to last chapter, and then flat again in the last), and Mal (a mage determined to end the cycle of life being traded for magic). I was disappointed that the title of the book was actually a title applied to more than one character by the end. If it was that important, at least one of those characters should have had a bigger role in the story.

All of the characters seemed very similar to me, which was disappointing. I like reading about characters who have different perspectives, and everyone here seemed to have one of two perspectives. In addition, I don’t really feel like the characters fit in the story, but rather seemed to be afterthoughts to the plot.

Which brings me to:


Okay. So there’s an evil that everyone has forgotten about but has been around pretty much forever. It’s a common fantasy plot, right? Nothing wrong with it. Except, with such a simple plot, I’d have hoped for more unique characters. What do they always say in the cooking shows? If you’re going to play it safe, you have to be perfect. 

I will say, the ending surprised me and I’m still trying to figure out if I missed foreshadowing due to stylistic strangeness (I’ll get to that in a bit), but the last 20 pages of chapter five felt like a rushed sequel that was tacked in. And the last chapter could have been longer. For a book with only six chapters, giving the denouement less than ten pages feels unimpressive. Especially when it brings a character back to life sort of. It would have been just as well not to kill that character off, or have magic bring them back more immediately, and then include some of that “I’ve just been brought back to life” shock in that final chapter.

Conversation and Dialogue

It seems like there was very little dialogue throughout the book. Towards the beginning of the book, many characters’ dialogue was written with lots of apostrophes and dropped words or letters to show their accent. This is personal preference, but I really disliked that. Other than that, the dialogue blended pretty much into the regular prose, so I don’t really have positives or negatives to say about it, just that everything seemed to be written in the same voice, which isn’t really a huge problem for me.

The World

I really like the world that this story takes place in, and to be honest I’d love to explore the rest of the world beyond the small one nation. That being said, the info dumps at the beginning were overwhelming, especially because of the stylistic strangeness.

I wish the book would have started with the intrigue with the Hold Daughter and Kait, because, strangely, the fantasy politics were fascinating. Having multiple groups working together and balancing each other to govern was a refreshing change from the infighting and typical coups in many fantasy novels. The political system itself seemed well-developed and I wish we would have seen more of it.

I also really liked how Czerneda left some of the worldbuilding ambiguous. The characters only have their suppositions, and I like that that’s what we got to, rather than a definitive “this is how it is.” I think that takes a lot of skill to do.


I tend to like lots of description, but the first chapter was a lot even for me. And in the first chapter, what was really strange was certain words seemed to be omitted and a lot of sentences seemed jumbled and unclear. In other books, this would have been enough to make me stop reading. But this is a book about, at least in part, the magic of words. And I think the jumble served an important purpose to the story. Like I mentioned earlier, the style definitely smoothed out as the story progressed. And you know what was integral to the magic of the Mage Scribes? Putting the Goddess’s words in the right order to make the magic. I have to believe that this was Czerneda’s intent: to start out with everything sort of jumbled and confusing, only to have it all come together and create a smooth narrative by the end. And that worked. It was still a hard read for the first third of the book, but I am glad that I stuck with it.

I encourage anyone who is looking for something a little bit different, and a little bit challenging, to give this book a try, though only you can judge if it is right for you.


Reading Music

Do you ever struggle to find the perfect music to settle you mind for reading, writing, or just plain relaxing? I do. I’ve found that most “relaxing” music is too high-energy for me, and most “calm” music is repetitive and boring. A couple years ago, I started learning how to play piano, and suddenly I realized I could create music that fits my needs perfectly. And now I want to share it with you.

I’ve mentioned before the Felix Cats Create YouTube channel, and that is where you will find my first reading-music playlist (with more to come!). It’s an hour of music with autumn vibes and sleeping cats.

Please check it out on the Felix Cats Create YouTube channel or Patreon page.

Have a wonderful day!

The reviews found here are my personal opinions, not meant to hurt or detract from others. The act of writing a books is monumental, as anyone who has tried it knows. Having a book professionally published is a feat to be celebrated. In this sense, the quality of the book does not matter. The authors who have written and published them (either through publishing houses or self) have bared their souls to the rest of us and it is not my intention to hurt them, or people who enjoy their books. These reviews are so that people who have interest in a book, but are not sure if it is for them, can get a better idea. I will try my best not to include major spoilers, but I will include mentions of content that I find problematic, as well as content that shines. 

Given to the Sea, by Julie McGinnis is largely about the sea and people who fear it. Some of these people have begun a tradition of sacrificing girls of the same bloodline to it seemingly every 15-20 years (after the previous girl has given birth to another girl), while others sacrifice the old and ill to it whenever they have the old or ill who are unable to contribute to their society. There are several good points to this novel, and unfortunately several more poor points. 


Characters are the most important part of any story. This story had enough good characters to pull me through, though there are a few that fall flat as well. 

The book starts with Khosa, a girl who has been raised away from the sea because the sea calls to her and she will eventually go to it to drown and, according to the histories, prevent a tsunami. Khosa, despite being unwilling for the majority of the book to fathom the idea that she should be allowed to live, is the character that I kept reading for once I realized how many points of view there were. She is intelligent, a little brainwashed at times (hello, she’s convinced that her death is what will be good for her country – because that’s what she’s been told!), and willing to admit her mistakes. She is also the only main character of a fantasy book who is clearly written with ASD (difficulty with facial expression, aversion to touch, special interests, difficulty in social situations). While McGinnis does seem to have simply picked symptoms from a list, I was excited for a main character to be so obviously neurodivergent. (If you know of other fantasy books that have neurodivergent main characters, please let me know! I desperately want more diversity in my fantasy.)

I disliked that Khosa frequently either endured being touched or touching others, seemingly only so the audience could interpret that she is a good person. For instance “I brush his hair from his eyes as he sleeps, pressing my lips against his forehead for the briefest of moments, ignoring the shudder it brings” (chapter 58) feels extremely out of character. The touch should be used sparingly to emphasize relationships (good or bad) between characters – such as when the queen refuses to let her pull away, or she does not mind Donil’s touch, or when Vincent begins to understand that she does not like to be touched. These are all good points.

Donil was my other favorite character. Despite his somewhat one-dimensional characterization, he was a positive spot in otherwise (unfortunately) unlikeable characters. His respect for Khosa was one of the main things that won me over. Emphasized by him always waiting for Khosa’s permission before entering the library and not touching her without her consent, Donil was a bright spot in this book. I did read other reviews that described him as a womanizer, but I did not get that impression. “Womanizer” is someone who takes advantage of women’s feelings in a sexual way. While other characters imply this about Donil, and there is a lot of flirting between him and other female characters, only Daisy seems to be a confirmed partner. What I see in Donil is a young man who flirts and jokes as a front, and others believe it is truth. Rather than a womanizer, he seems to be a cheerful presence, always smiling and joking.

I liked that there were guards who were respectful of Khosa. Guards in most stories are described as bawdy, generally depraved, and dangerous. I enjoyed that there were only good guards (at least the named ones) that surrounded Khosa, and that Merryl was shown to have a life outside of being a guard (which again, most books don’t allow for).

I did not enjoy Dara’s chapters. She seemed like a very flat character (though not so much as Witt) and I wish we could have got more about her than “I need an Indiri male but I love Vincent and hate Khosa because Vincent loves her.” Not an intriguing character at all. (And if you were wondering my thoughts on Vincent, I find him regrettably forgettable. Like most royal characters, he is overburdened by expectation and complains about it too much for my interest.)

Witt. He was introduced as a character who has significant feeling but must hide it, and promptly all he did was act violently without feeling anything. This character was my least favorite. Even when Ank called him a good man, it was not followed up with anything good. I found myself skipping Witt’s chapters when it became clear that they added nothing to the story. And I’m tired of violence just for violence, which is all his story has been.


There are three main plots to this story: the sea, the war, and the romance. I liked the sea. The most interesting storyline of this novel was about the sea itself – the rising sea. And that many of the characters spent so much time trying to understand the rising sea. I am very interested to see where that goes in the next book.

The war storyline (and the generalized violence) felt forced and added mainly because a) fantasy stories are “supposed” to have war and violence and b) to force Khosa into leaving her home and as her redemption at the end. I think there could have been better ways to handle both of these events. Even had it been a situation where we do not see the “plotting” of the enemy (which significantly reduced any potential tension that storyline offered) or had only snippets from spies relaying information.

The romance was not as complicated as some people want to make it. And honestly, it felt like a solid undercurrent to the story as a whole. (Even if the whole “adopted siblings falling in love” track is too cringey for me to find compelling)

However the recurring implications of sexual harassments and rape significantly undercut my enjoyment of the story. At least this prepared me for the “inevitable” rape attempt (which thank goodness did not succeed – I have no problem spoiling that plot point). I am frustrated that it was even included. There could have been any other plot point to replace it (the character trying to take her to the sea for the sacrifice, a non-friendly guard preventing the escape attempt, anything else). These sorts of plot points should really stop. It’s not character building, it’s not plot advancement. Writing about healing from trauma is important in all genres, but all too often, as in this case, it is a plot point swiftly moved on from and not revisited. If authors insist on including this kind of storyline, it must be handled with sensitivity and gentleness. Not included for shock or cringe.

Conversation/ Dialogue

The realistic banter. The main characters in this book are somewhere between late teens and early twenties (I think there was mention of age at the beginning of the book?) and, though I am now a decade past that age, I enjoyed the banter between the friends that reminded me of how my friends would tease each other at that age. Even down to some of the *ahem* sexual jokes.

The World

The world of the sea-fearing people greatly intrigued me. This fear seemed to be a common thread across most if not all of the cultures explored in this novel. It is fascinating because most coastal fantasy communities are in tune with the sea to an extent where they do not fear it but they do respect it. I would be very curious to get more of the lore behind this unanimous fear (which a single tsunami or some dangerous sea creatures seems unlikely to produce).

Several pieces of lore and story points seemed to go nowhere (though I allow for the possibility that they come up in the second book): the white cats, the Indiri memory being possibly flawed, if there is another Indiri, the keeper saved by Witt. These all seemed like important points but were glossed over and promptly left behind.

A cultural note: I can see that McGinnis was trying to create distinct people groups, and on the surface that worked. However where it fell flat was in both of the main cultures presented, every other person was referred to by a title rather than a name (Lithos, Mason, Lure, Curator, Weaver, Scribe, etc.) This would have been better contained to one culture or the other. For instance, if the Pietra are known largely only by titles, then the Stillean could be “Scribe X” and then just referred to as X. My reasoning for this is to help make distinct cultural groups, rather than it all blending together.

The Feneen. This was such an excellent concept, and yet such a missed opportunity. When first describing the Feneen, my interpretation was that these were people with disabilities and illnesses that were not accepted by other societies. Which was correct to an extent. But the writer took this concept and then ruined it by making the Feneen monstrous: extra eyes and arms and fingers and legs – which I suppose I have no knowledge on how often things like that occur, but my immediate reaction is “not enough to make a whole society” (unless there is something else going on in this world that is causing it – which there was no hint about if that is the case). I’m disappointed that a chance for pro-disability writing turned into this.


On a stylistic note, I didn’t like how choppy some of the chapters were, specifically when they did not shift scene or even character for the next bit. There is no need to start a new chapter in those circumstances and it grated on me. It seemed as if the author was taking the advice to end chapters on hooks so that the reader will keep reading, but I would have kept reading the same chapter too… however this is a stylistic preference and I understand that every writer has their own stylistic preferences.

The End

The ending was far too rushed, and honestly felt forced. This would have been better left to flesh out in the beginning of the second book, or just make this one longer.

Overall, I enjoyed this story enough to finish it in just over two days. I did read the sequel, which was incredibly disappointing and leaned into all of the things I disliked about the first. That being said, Given to the Sea  was intriguing enough to hold my attention, even if it was not a particularly exciting book. And I honestly did not know how it would end, which is always a plus for me. I’d love to hear your thoughts if you’ve read this book!

Hello, adventurers!

I just wanted to let you know that chapter one of Cartographer’s Quest is available to patrons on my Patreon page today! It will be available to the public on Wednesday, September 7th.

Of additional interest, I have been working on composing music for the novel! On Sunday, the first track will be available to patrons. On Wednesday the 7th, that track will be public both on Patreon and on our Felix Cats Create YouTube page.

There’s a lot in the works, so stay tuned for further updates!


A New Adventure

Hello my fellow adventurers! I hope you have all been thriving creatively. I know I have! I’d like to give you some updates about my creative life, and invite you to join me on a new adventure.


Of course I’ve been writing (did you doubt it?)! There have been a spattering of short stories, a handful of new novel starts, and a significant revision of Cartographer’s Quest. The most exciting news is that I have decided to make Cartographer’s Quest available in monthly installments to patrons on Patreon (more on that in a bit).


I have a moderate collection of “Cartographer’s Quest” maps in various stages of completion and polish. My plan is to bind them together when they are finished, and offer them as both a visual journey of the story, and as supplements for various role-playing games.

Painting hit a stumbling block when we moved house and I didn’t have a dedicated space to paint any more (I have to keep it away from the cats). That is changing however! We’ve done a major reshuffle of how we use our space and we now have a dedicated “creative room” to work in. As soon as I get all my paints reorganized, I will be back in business.


One of my newest adventures is music composition. While I am still new to both the actual creation of music and the technological hurdles of recording, exporting, uploading and the like, I am really excited to be making music! After spending years of listening to music that doesn’t quite scratch the itch (but is still excellent!) making my own is exhilarating. Some of the music correlates to Cartographer’s Quest, while other songs simply soothe the soul. So far it is all instrumental (I know I’m not the only one that has a huge problem hearing their own voice recorded!), but someday I hope to add lyrics for the songs that have them.


A couple of years ago, I dove into the world of yarn spinning. I’ve really come a long way from my first lumpy, brittle yarns and have started using those yarns to knit and crochet (rather than to sit on a shelf and look pretty). This has been an incredible journey because not only has it led me back to knitting, but also to the weaving. While my weaving still has a lot of room to grow, the possibilities are endless when I can make my own clothes, towels, and blankets literally from something I’ve grown (did I mention that one summer we grew a beautiful crop of flax to turn into linen? No?). If that isn’t an adventure in the fantasy genre, I don’t know what is.

All of these adventures, as well as so many more, will be documented on the Felix Cats Create Patreon page.

A little about the page: it’s a creative collaboration with my husband that will spread in many creative directions, but at it’s core it is still an adventure in creativity. My writing will play a prominent role in directing us. Chapters of Cartographer’s Quest will be released in monthly installments and much of the music and art will be related to the novel. But there are also going to be a lot of cat-related themes (cat furniture, catios, etc) and other creative content. You can find us at patreon.com/felixcatscreate as well as on YouTube and Instagram under the name Felix Cats Create.

When you stop by, please let me know! I’d love to see you there! Until then, adventure on my fellow writers.

Cartographer Lacey Wentwether has worked hard to claim her place in the Empire. When not restoring maps for the august University Library, she travels across the continent with a team of archaeologists to map and catalogue distant ruins. Tom is one of those archaeologists – and the man Lacey secretly loves.

While working in the remote Dosid Mountains, Lacey and Tom make a chance discovery triggering a chain of events that threatens to destroy the life she’s built. To protect her future she must uncover the secrets of an era past and as she delves deeper into the mystery, she finds both allies and enemies in unexpected places.

Joined by her steadfast friend Kosaeken and the imperious Prince Nicondre, Lacey embarks on a harrowing journey that risks everything she holds dear. As she faces the reality that her life may never be the same, Lacey must decide who to trust, who to protect, and what she is willing to sacrifice.

The first chapter of Cartographer’s Quest will be released on my Patreon page on Saturday, May 1st to patrons. In addition, the first map of Ilruin, the world in which this story is set, will be released at the same time to the public on my Patreon page. Don’t miss it!

Follow this link to view my page on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/emilyfelixart

Book Review: The City of Brass

The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty. A fantasy story about a young woman? Please. And she gets swept into the magical world, having to survive by her wits? Yes. Not the typical European-style magical world. Even better. 

I wanted to love this book. The premise was great, the plot is actually pretty intriguing, the characters well developed (especially the morally conflicted Ali). Even the secondary characters shine – from the servant who tries to help the main character, to the prince and even the princess gets a moment near the end of the book in which we understand her more fully. There were a lot of reasons why I wanted this book to be exceptional.

Unfortunately, despite the good points, it did not live up to my hopes. Despite an overall writing style that is concise and functional, the descriptions were too much. The same buildings and places were described multiple times from different characters perspectives – but with the exact same voice, the exact same flowery language, and the exact same result: skipped.

The plot was fairly unpredictable – until secrets started being revealed. Then I could see exactly where the story was going, and it lost some of it’s allure. Now this is a point that isn’t necessarily bad – sometimes it is fun to be proven right. However compared with the other points, it was a bit of a disappointment. And I will add, some of the “historical” plot points were a little confusing when it came to a certain group of people. Maybe I missed something, but it seems like if everyone hates one group, there isn’t a real reason for conflict over their treatment.

I really enjoyed getting a bit of non-European fantasy. I think if this book were marketed as a YA novel my expectations would have been different, and they would have been met. So if you are looking for a book for the fantasy-loving teen in your life, this is definitely one to consider. And I recommend reading it even if you aren’t a teen, just adjust your expectations.

Trust yourself.

A long time has passed. Longer than I’d ever intended, and so much has changed in my life. But if you are here, it’s to read about writing, not me. So here is what I have to say:

Trust yourself.

You may have heard before that as writers we have to trust our readers, they will follow where we lead. But trust yourself, too. You know your story, you knew it when you wrote the first draft, even before then. If you are revising or editing, hold off on the pen. Maybe you want to include something – chances are you already have – and in a better way than your gut reaction is telling you to. If you are writing the first draft, just write it. Don’t get hung up on conventions or the perfect word. Trust that you will get there. Because you will.

Thank you for sticking with me through the years.

What are you reading?

I’ll admit, I went to the library after I finished The Queen of the Tearling to get the sequel – and I’ve barely touched it. I tried, I really did. But it is, if possible, worse than the first one. I even skipped ahead to see if anything caught my interest later, and it didn’t. So today I’m headed to the library again. Hopefully this time I’ll find a book that I really enjoy.

What books are you reading right now? I would love some suggestions!

Okay, so I just got my new library card about four weeks ago. Shameful, I know. To counteract the shame, I decided to grab a book, any book, and write a review when I was finished with it. I grabbed The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. When I picked it up, I didn’t know there was any hype about it. I’d like to begin by saying: I have tremendous respect for anyone who writes a book. I don’t intend any criticisms about any book to be taken as criticisms of the author, or dislike for them.

Beware, spoilers ahead.

The book is about a young woman who has been hidden from her country for her entire life. At the beginning of the book, she is retrieved and taken to the capital to be installed as queen in place of her uncle, who has been serving as regent.

My first impressions of this book were that it was poorly written and the storytelling was sloppy. I was intrigued by the plot, though. I was interested in the “epic battle between light and darkness” that is supposed to take place between young Kelsea Raleigh, the new queen, and a “malevolent sorceress” you turns out to be the queen of a neighboring country. I’ll admit, I was only interested because I wanted to see how another author balances a heroine and villainess, as that is a key pairing in my own book. So I was willing to overlook my unfavorable first impressions to get to the meat of the story.

The first half of the book moved exceedingly slowly. Countless characters were introduced, described in annoying detail, given excruciatingly boring backstory, and barely touched on again. The main character herself was not a likable heroine. She wasn’t a Mary-Sue, because other characters didn’t like her either, but that made it almost worse. Them not liking her made Kelsea seem even more poorly written than in the first few pages. I will admit, by the end of the book I grew interested in her character, but not invested. The interest comes from an apparent descent towards villainy herself – a descent that I doubt Ms. Johansen intended.

It is clear, from Kelsea’s ending of the slave shipments to Mortmesne, her unwavering commitment to what is, supposedly, good, that she is meant to be a true hero. However, she is cold and cruel to the people around her, unwilling to give an inch of understanding (at least until the end of the book, when faced with traitor Mhurn – but I’ll get to that). She treats her subjects like silly children. In fairness, some of them act like children, but they’ve been under the regent Thomas’ guidance for nearly twenty years, and he allowed hedonistic indulgence in every way. When Kelsea refuses to try to guide these people into different ways, it comes across as the will of an intolerant ruler.

Kelsea thinks of anyone who doesn’t agree with her as below her, and unintelligent. This is especially pronounced when, obsessed with obtaining books, she degrades the captain of her guard constantly. He is trying to keep her safe in a city of people that want her dead, and she chooses to not only disrespect that task, but berate him for not agreeing with her that books are the utmost priority. The tendency continues to the end of the book, when she threatens to kill the captain if ever he disobeys her (which he has only done in order to save her life). She likewise threatens her bodyguard, who has done everything in her power to keep her safe. The only time she shows understanding is to Mhurn, a member of her guard who betrayed her more than once due to a drug addiction. With him she seeks understanding for why he did what he did, gives him morphine, and then kills him herself. In any other situation, a heroine killing a traitor herself might be honorable, but combined with her other unpleasant traits, this act only served to show that she has a thirst for blood.

Early in the book, I thought perhaps another character would have been a more interesting focus, and if Ms. Johansen continues to paint Kelsea as heroine, that is still true. However, seeing a character slip into villainy is an exceptionally engaging read, and I would be delighted if this is how the books continue.

As for the book itself, in part two I found myself skipping pages of unnecessary descriptions and conversations that added nothing to the story (but served to showcase Kelsea’s cruelty). There were many info-dumps throughout the book that could have been woven into the narrative, and many times we were outright told things that were better left to the reader to surmise. These points broke my engagement with the story. Jumps in perspective outlined what the antagonists were doing, and cut the tension of the story so much so that it was at these points that I set the book down entirely.

There was gratitude, yet poorly executed, violence throughout the book. I imagine that these acts were meant to inspire fear and worry, but they only made me disinterested. Mention such things a few times, and we understand the threat. Mention them on every page, and we become desensitized to it.

The only time I felt anything was at the very end of the book. Kelsea’s captain told her the story of how he’d delivered her to her now-dead foster parents, and that her foster-mother had sacrificed showing her love in order to help her be strong. This realization, coupled with the impossibility of resolution, brought tears to my eyes. But I’m also a sucker for such moments.

My final impressions of the book are much the same as first impressions. The storytelling was sloppy, the writing was at times painful. I am disappointed that the Crossing, a much alluded to historical event, seems to be the crossing of an actual ocean, and not space-travel. The story, for all of its shortcomings, was good and I am interested in reading the next one.

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