Is it real or just fantasy? | Cyn’s Book Review of Anathema (Causal Enchantment, #1) By K. A. Tucker

By: Cynthia A.


By: K. A. Tucker

Published: July 15, 2011

Publisher: Papoti Books

Series: Causal Enchantment

Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance, Young Adult

Evangeline has spent her teenage years in obscurity. Her foster parents have the emotional aptitude of robots and her classmates barely acknowledge her existence. About to turn eighteen and feeling like a social pariah, she is desperate to connect with someone. Anyone.  That someone is Sophie.  Willing to do anything she can to keep this first connection she has ever felt, she flies Manhattan.  But something is wrong with her newfound family, dreadfully wrong and her discovery of what is down this rabbit hole, shattering her world.  In a world where everyone is lying for personal gain, Evangeline must a make a choice and find her own piece of this game of chess.

This book was completely unpredictable!  At first light is looks as though this is going to be one of the generic vampire novels, but it’s so much more than that.

In the beginning of the book, Evangeline is introduced to the readers as a very a kind an ordinary character.  It’s not hard to imagine everyone ignoring her existence, she doesn’t leap off the pages.  Although her character comes off as plain, that is what makes her real and jump off the pages.  Readers won’t necessarily jump out of their seats for her, but readers aren’t about to just slam the book and put it away.  However, a word of caution to all readers: Evangeline is the most trustworthy and naïve character, making her difficult to truly respect as the hero.  She is not a two-dimensional but unfortunately, she comes off that way at times.

Nevertheless, this novel as a spark—that is if you can get past the first chapter.  That’s not to say that the opening of the book is bad but it’s written so out there in left field that it’s not supernatural but it’s not within the confines of the social norm or even befitting the story at all.  It’s just there to show readers how Evangeline gets sucked into this world full of lies, magic and danger.  As a launching point it’s very…unorthodox, even though is highlights the protagonist’s need to a connection.

The story takes so many turns as it circles Evangeline and her nightly “dreams” that take her to a world like Earth where so much is different but familiar at the same time.  Those dreams hold within them a mystery that holds this novel together.  Repeatedly Tucker pulls the reader into this page-turner with those dreams.  They offer so much for the character, building her psyche and turning her and the story from plain to unique.  Readers are able to follow Evangeline as she goes through emotional physical and psychological torrents, wondering what is real and what is fake.  Soon after, with all the revelations, the plot thickens giving the reader a lot to hook absorb and latch onto, wondering “what is going to happen next”.

However, although this book has a captivating spark due to the unique nature of circumstances, the explanations are a mouthful.  Tucker blurts everything out, making the reading jarring.  Her—Tucker’s—explanations of things, such as the Causal Enchantment are jarring.  That is, in part, because she doesn’t give the reader all the details once Sophie begins to explain.  Between all the characters lying keeping secrets from Evangeline and each other, all the explanations are missing details, making it hard for the reader to properly understand what exactly is going on in the novel and how it’s progression.  It’s literally all over the place and it shouldn’t come off that way.  It’s obvious as the writer was using those holes to keep the reader hooked, but she didn’t need to because her characters and the intriguing plotline did that enough for her.

From witches and vampires to parallel universes and vampiric beasts, Anathema offers a unique spin in the world of the Vampire genre and offers a little something for those with an adventurous spark.  ★★★★☆ (B)

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