Thursday, March 23, 2017

New Novella Review - Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day

Novella - Dusk or Dark or Dawn or Day 
Writer - Seanan McGuire    
Published By -

While urban fantasy is not really my favorite genre to say the least, I really did have rather high expectation from this one. Seanan McGuire is a writer with a lot of hype on the internet and the blurb promised an interesting setting for this novella. The novella might not be extraordinary stuff (but it nearly could have been); but it does provide an unique experience with an unorthodox and imaginative setting, well fleshed out and realistic characters, and a dark and moody atmosphere which is a thought provoking read.

Jenna blamed herself for her sister Patty's death. When Jenna died, she blamed herself for that, too. Unfortunately, Jenna died too soon. Living or dead, every soul is promised a certain amount of time, and when Jenna passed, she found a heavy debt of time in her record and thus she became a lingering ghost. Unwilling to simply steal that time from the living, Jenna earns every day she leeches with volunteer work at a suicide prevention hotline. But something has come for the ghosts of New York, something that can bind ghosts to mirrors and make them do its bidding, and the ghosts are disappearing all over the city. Only Jenna stands in its way now. Can she, with a little help from some friends find the one causing the mayhem?

The world that Seanan McGuire weaves her story in, is a richly imagined world with unique characters who make their stories known with their actions and emotions. There are topics such as suicide, despair, survivors guilt, camaraderie, selfishness among others. The theme of an unfair and uncompromising world is pervading all throughout the story. And yet the protagonists keep striving for a better end result.

The characters are a strong aspect of writing for the writer, as they are quite lovable and relate able and I as a reader was always wondering about the fates of different characters. I felt I could have read about these characters for a lot more pages and that is the credit I got to give to the author for creating such imaginative characters. The mystery on the other had never really intrigued me which might be due to the short length of the story. 

And in the end the length is the thing holding the story back. I always had the sense of being deprived and rushed towards a fast ending, this really should have been a full length book rather than a novella in my opinion. Then there should have been enough room for the author to fully realize the potential of exploring the unique setting as well as to establish certain characters and the detail upon their backstory and also towards providing a better resolution for their conflicts.  

This gets 3.5 out of 5 stars from me. I think this rating could have been much better if this was a full length novel.   

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