Sunday, August 2, 2015

THE GOLDEN BALLS by Delilah Storm

Publisher: Torquere
Date published: 05/13/15
PRINT ISBN: 978-1-61040-911-7:
MM Fantasy
Reviewed by Helen

Japer is the king’s youngest offspring, a lonely young man, whose only happiness comes from staring at the national treasure, the Golden Ball. The orb brings light and happiness into his world, but he has to hide at the bottom of the garden so no one can see him with it.

Anyone who has heard the fairy tale can predict what happens next, but after that the story has some very novel twists and turns, including hints of several other fairy tales thrown in as world building and plot twists.

The story itself is a lot of fun with an innocently engaging hero, an intriguing secondary character, and the obligatory bad guys. The world is absolutely genuine fairy tale fantasy as one might guess, but I really appreciated the nods to various other fairy tales so cleverly linked in with this one. Kudos to the author for that.
What I didn’t enjoy was the quality of the writing. My first thought was that the book hadn’t been edited at all, but then I recalled reading other books from this series that were quite clean. I can only assume this one had a far less talented editor, or an author who disregarded her editor’s suggestions. There were homonym errors (prayed/preyed), repetition both of words and of ideas, mixed up POVs, and poor use of dialogue tags (several long sentences without sibilants supposedly hissed). There were also a couple of sentences that had me scratching my head and trying to guess what the author meant. All of which was a massive detraction from what was a clever idea that could have been a genuinely delightful little read.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.


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