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Roxy Eloise

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Discovering Puracordis (2022) 17 eksemplarer

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
{First in The Guidal series; future, young adult, YA, magic, LTER}(2021)

I received this as an Early Reviewer book a while ago and decided to read it now but I jumped in without re-reading the blurb (although in hindsight, like the majority of blurbs, it's rather florid and not completely accurate) so I was a bit lost at the beginning.

The year is 2119 and Aurora lives in the Boulderfell institute inside a glass dome in the city of Vencen. We meet her, and then spend over a year with her, when she has just turned sixteen and is moving from the Mustard section (the children's section) to the Navy section where she will become a Young Enforcer until she leaves after another thirteen years. One of the Youngens' duties is to patrol the city just before sunset and ensure that all citizens are off the streets.
Pax and I wandered the streets in a careless daydream. I was so thankful Pax enjoyed soaking up the atmosphere, too. We would often stroll along together in silence. The city, Vencen, was built of mostly glass and steel, each building an architectural masterpiece. I could spend all day admiring the impressive works of art. Once content with the breathtaking, man-made structures, we would find ourselves in the woods encircling the city outskirts. Being immersed in natural beauty was such a rare feast.The sunlight blinked through the myriad of fluttering leaves, making a spectacle of the brilliant-green ferns below. A few moments later, shadows crept in. The sun was setting, so we re-entered the city, seeking the remainder of light. Walking in the middle of a deserted road, Pax began to speak. "I couldn't imagine what it must have been like for Bricks-'n-Mortar Men. They didn't have intelligent, pico-processing roadways."
Narrated in the first person from Aurora's point of view the story starts with a dream/ memory of the time she was captured as a toddler and brought to the institute where she now lives - but she sees it from someone else's perspective. There is a hint that there is hidden magic in this world - Aurora's first class is a history class about witchcraft and 'maleficium' last being known in 1684. Magic is obviously to be abhorred and has been stamped out.

When she moves to the Navies, we find out that first Years have to do a Unity Assessment and then at the beginning of each year the system checks if any pairs 'match'. If anyone does (and it can be during any year, and with someone from any year group) then they are betrothed and do their duties together (and, if they want, they can also book in for classes together) and when they leave the institute they will get married first (but not before then). They are given bedrooms with interconnecting doors - but they are not allowed to sleep together on penalty of being imprisoned for thirty years, which was odd. Of course, Aurora matches.

I thought the overall story had an interesting concept but Aurora doesn't seem to do much during her day - and she inevitably does something (like being injured or punished) which ends up with her being excused from duties so she ends up doing even less. She seems to earn punishments easily, sometimes randomly, and there were sections where I didn't understand her reactions. Seioh (CEO?) Jensen, who heads the Institute, hands her some harsh and unnecessary-seeming punishments and she always dreads being called to his office - but (puzzlingly) at one point when she's very upset and doesn't know where to go or what to do she finds herself going to his office and zoning out for the day on his couch. And he ignores her and just carries on with his work.

She makes friends and enemies in her new section - including some of Seioh Boulderfell's children - and her friend group is good (oddly, she only seems to have known one of them before) but it would have been nice to see more/ stronger interactions with them and maybe a few more details of her day to day life to give the story some substance. We don't find out much about this world (which may or may not be a future version of our Earth) or even about the city or life outside the institute - in fact we only leave the institute with Aurora a couple of times - so the world view is vague and we don't even know how much power Boulderfell holds outside the institute. But this could be intentional at this point in the series.

I liked the story though I felt that the pacing could do with some polishing and tightening up. There were times that the narrative lagged for me, when Aurora seemed a bit childish and places where things were left unexplained or it jumped between events, leaving gaps, which had me feeling a bit lost and disgruntled. I found the endearments certain people used for Aurora ('my little Roar', 'Little Lady') awkwardly patronising. The story is similar to Fourth Wing (young people training in a martial institute, making friends and enemies, but the people in power are keeping secrets as to why things are done the way they are) but without the dragons and the explicitness; despite its loose cohesion I liked this book better.

And then it ends just when magic makes an appearance and it starts to really get interesting! I wish I had the next book to see where this goes.

(March 2024)
3.5 stars
… (mere)
½
 
Markeret
humouress | 12 andre anmeldelser | Mar 26, 2024 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I had such high hopes for this book when I finished the first one. The first book was adventurous and action filled and although it clearly drew on some existing works for inspiration, it was a unique read. This book, however, let me down. But I know others will love it more than the first so please don't see my lesser enjoyment of this book and immediately disregard it as the story wasn't inherently bad in any way.

The book picks up where the last one left off. This is definitely not a standalone - it does not describe the world or technology again. It had been a little while since I read the last book (last year) and even I was a little confused at the start and had to go remind myself of how this world works. I think it could really have benefitted from an introduction or even a bullet list to outline some of the basics (although I guess now that both books are out most people won't have a yearish long break between reading them so will probably be fine).

This book is quite a bit longer than the last one but I wouldn't say that it has more plot. It basically jumps between the events of the story and characters (Aurora and Tayo) being horny at each other. And this is a lot of where my lesser enjoyment comes from as this is not the kind of book I usually like reading. I know others love it though so if that's your kind of thing it's definitely worth giving this a shot. I actually really enjoyed the plot (minus the horniness). I loved getting to see a little more of the institute and learning more about magic and seeing characters explore the world outside of the one that has been presented to them their whole lives. There is, however, too much making out and taking cold showers and sneaking around to make out even more between the plot - it probably makes up around half the book. There is no detailed sexual content as this is marketed as being YA (so many "I need to take a cold shower" moments to prevent escalation) but there are details about other physical intimacies that nearly lead to sex. And then the author reintroduces a love triangle to add something more to this aspect of the book. I found the outcome pretty predictable though.

If you are interested in this book I would recommend waiting till the final book in the trilogy is released. It ends on a massive cliff-hanger and honestly, it feel more like the end of a chapter rather than the end of a book. I think this may have worked better as a duology, but I can also understand why it was split into three. Despite not giving this book a high rating I might still give the final book a shot when it is released. I would love some answers to the events that happened in the last part of the book and hope that the final book gives more page time to plot as I have noticed a pattern like this (with the middle book being more romance heavy) in other YA series I've read.
… (mere)
½
 
Markeret
TheAceOfPages | 5 andre anmeldelser | Oct 25, 2023 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is the second book in the Puracordis series. After discovering that she has magic, Aurora begins to explore her powers with Tayo, a boy from her past. I hate to write this review, but I really disliked this book. The first book in the series was really good and I was looking forward to this one. I'm not sure what happened to the storytelling. The entire first half of the book was two characters making out and seeing how far they could go without actually having sex. Plot wise, nothing else was happening. In the second half of the book, Aurora told her best friend and her match about puracordis. Their reaction was pure excitement. This seemed at odds in a society who deems magic malevolent and seeks to exterminate it at any costs. Sadly, this book just did not work for me.… (mere)
 
Markeret
JanaRose1 | 5 andre anmeldelser | Sep 29, 2023 |
I received this book in exchange for an honest review.
This book was so good. I enjoyed reading this book more than the 1st one. It did take me a while to read it but that's my own fault, any spare moment I had I kept picking it back up. The love triangle is good and frustrating at times which could end up with me changing which person I want her to end up with. I can't believe that ending! I now can't wait to pick up the 3rd book in the series.
 
Markeret
JesseekaG | 5 andre anmeldelser | Sep 1, 2023 |

Statistikker

Værker
2
Medlemmer
24
Popularitet
#522,742
Vurdering
4.0
Anmeldelser
19
ISBN
3
Sprog
1