I thought that Ashling was the book where The Obernewtyn Chronicles really found their pace. Elspeth’s quest begins to gain traction, alongside the Misfits journey to acceptance. The parallel tales of the two missions begin to really make sense and it is easy to understand how Elspeth’s fate is intertwined with the fate of all of Obernewtyn (and indeed, the world).
I didn’t know that there was a second Obernewtyn book until I stumbled on it a few years after reading the first. I had always felt like Obernewtyn was well finished. So, The Farseekers did feel a little like an after-thought sequel. But, that didn’t detract from its brilliance and value in any way, shape or form. This book built on a world that I had really and thoroughly enjoyed in Obernewtyn, and further immersed and sucked me in to a new, dystopian reality.
I first read this book when I was twelve years old – and I’m rereading the series (since the final book was released late last year!) and I’ve honestly loved it ever since. Not only are the characters beautiful and relatable, the prose masterfully written and the settings so vivid that I can see them every time I close my eyes, the journey of young adolescent in fear for her life to young woman in control and strong is such a fantastic coming of age story.
Every time I think that I have a handle on the legal system outlined in the Temperance Brennan books, Reichs seems to throw a spanner in the works. I finally get my head around the system de Montreal, then we move to America, then we investigate a plane crash, and finally we move onto the jurisdictional system of Guatemala. It’s always great when you learn while reading!
Where Exile’s Honor dealt with coming to terms with a changed reality, Exile’s Valor shows us how it is possible to take strength from this adversity and embrace it. This is a story of coming to terms with oneself and using this to create a better future – not just for yourself, but for others. This story reminded me of the fact that even though change tends to rock me to my core and leaves me feeling unshakey and unsure at the best of times, it has always been a great agent for obtaining a better future. No matter whether the change is good or bad, desired or not, it can be used to make your future better… at least, that’s the way that I choose to see it.
I’ve read a lot of fantasy books that have a tough arms master to train the main character in self-defence. Regardless of the period of history or the weaponry used, they all seem to have the same things in common – they are tough, strict, unsmiling and incredibly efficient at killing, fighting and making sure their charges survive. So it was a real pleasure to read a tale that helped me to understand how a man could become an arms master.
It seems like every week there is a new way that technology is helping us to understand the world around us. From flying drones to genetic testing, advances in technology are allowing us to see the world in a new light and new ways. This month, the wonders of technology have helped us to better understand Boobies, predatory seabirds who feed on squid and fish.
So far this has been my least favourite of the Women of the Otherworld books, but I still absolutely adore it! After Dime Store Magic, it was really nice to find out what Paige, Lucas and Savannah are doing with their somewhat changed lives. That, and finding out more about Lucas’ family and the difficulties of his life was fascinating – although it took a little while for the storyline to really build up steam.
I’ve lost count of the amount of times that I’ve been told ‘that’s not very ladylike’. And okay, sometimes it’s because I’ve burped epically loudly, or my maxi-skirt has been tucked into my underwear for whatever reason (a very attractive look, I can assure you). But I’ve never really understood exactly what people mean by be a lady. It is just so very, very confusing.
Dime Store Magic was a total change of pace in the The Women of the Otherworld series. Going form Elena’s hard-edged, tough approach to life and her slightly psychotic lover to Paige and the trials of new-motherhood was a very interesting step. I loved the stark difference between the tone and personalities of the two heroines in this series. The inclusion of Elena and Clay within the storyline (even if it was a small one) also helped the transition between characters. This still felt like part of the same series, not just two books set in the same fantasy world.