Monday, 6 May 2013
Blog Tour: Review & Giveaway: Echo
Author: Alicia Wright Brewster
Publisher: Dragonfairy Press
Released: 25th April 2013
Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon UK | Amazon US | Barnes & Noble
The end of the world is in ten days, and Ashara, or Asha, is expecting to spend her last few days peacefully with her family. But on the first day of the countdown, she finds out that she has to report to the Council for training - as an Ethereal. Elemental powers run through family and as far as Asha knows, she doesn't have any. But this is soon replaced by other news. Mages are the ones responsible for the end of the world, all converging to one single area, and it's the job of every person with an elemental ability to hunt them down. For Asha, the problem lies in the fact that she seems to be the root of all the trouble.
Echo was a simple enough read, with a straightforward plotline and a world easy to understand. There's something appealing about the concept of a world where people can control the elements; in this case, there are six: earth, air, water, fire, metal and ether. I quite liked the idea of a countdown that started right from the book's beginning, one that everyone in this world was aware of. It made a change from those books where only a handful of people are able to prevent total destruction; this time, it's everyone possible coming together to work against the cause. The idea of Mages, too, was a little different. While there are books out there with Mages, I haven't read too many, and I liked how they were portrayed here. This isn't a particularly heavy read and there aren't too many layers, which meant I was able to get through this fairly quickly.
Asha was, for the most part, easy to relate to. Her confusion about what is happening comes across really clearly, and her personal relationships make her all the more likeable. Hers is not a family of rivalry or indifference. Her mother, stepfather, sister, all of them are close to each other and to her and vice versa. It's obvious, too, how much she misses her brother, who died when she was younger. I also absolutely loved the relationship between her and Rey. With all the talk of love triangles lately, I'm just going to put you out of your misery straight away and tell you there is not a love triangle here. These two are just really close friends (and distant family relations), and I really appreciated that. The romance was between Asha and Loken, who used to go out together, back before the time of impending doom. I could appreciate the difficulties between them, but I did find their relationship somewhat hot/cold. Having said that, I still ended up liking Loken and rooting for their relationship. Asha herself I took some issue with, occasionally questioning her attitude and her choices. In the end, though, she remained a generally likeable character.
Echo is a quick, simple read, with some genre twists you might perhaps not expect upon reading the synsopis. There was a nice blend of ideas here, coupled with characters not hard to relate to, and overall, it was quite enjoyable.
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