Friday, August 14, 2015

Reader's Review: "Songstruck" by Sofia Black

Synopsis from Amazon:
Isabel Poole is a wonderful storyteller. So wonderful, in fact, that her audiences tend to believe that the fairytales she tells are true. They aren't, of course, because magic isn't real. That's what Isabel tells herself, until the day she's proven wrong. On what should have been an entirely normal, entirely dull day, a strange melody fills the air and captures Isabel's attention. Leaving her home behind, she follows the song into the forest and finds its source: fae twins, intent on spiriting her away. They need her—or rather, the spark of magic inside of her—to help them end a war that is tearing their world apart. A wise person would refuse. A wise person would run home and forget about the fae and their war and their magic. A wise person never would have followed the music into the forest to begin with. Isabel never claimed to be wise.

My Review:

Awwww!!! It's fairies and magic portals and enchantments! What starts out as if it could become a dystopian Alice-In-Wonderland tale quickly becomes an enthralling adventure full of lively characters and wonderful, heartfelt moments.
Sofia Black has cleverly crafted her own breed of familiar fantasy "adepts" like Fae (not fairies!) and silvertongues; from the Pied-Piper-esque Alastor to Tarryn, with her siren-like voice.
Dire situations, politics, and sibling rivalry bring life and color to this wonderful tale. The measured pacing ebbed and flowed at just the right moments, giving various characters the chance to shine and to develop. True, the style was a bit rudimentary in spots, but on the whole, I felt the author did a great job making her own unique plot and characters absolutely worth caring about! I finished reading with a huge grin on my face. 
Isabel is a delightful character, enough flaws to make her realistic and not a Mary-Sue, and also not quite such a "high and lonely destiny" that she would fall too squarely into the "Chosen One" trope, either. What I liked most was that Sofia Black seems to have figured out how to let her characters "be" their own selves, and grow at their own pace. So many writers get caught up in making certain their characters are perceived a certain way, and all the events I the story are geared toward that one perception—but this isn't that kind of story. The conflicts and experiences serve to bring out different sides of each character, and the added dimensionality keeps me hooked all the way through! The twists and turns kept me guessing, and I absolutely love the way it ended. Much good storytelling here! Congratulations to Sofia Black on a fantastic debut, and I definitely look forward to more from this author! I am well and truly SONGSTRUCK! 

This book earns a *****FIVE STAR***** rating, and an Upstream Writer Certified HEARTILY RECOMMENDED!