Wednesday, 6 July 2016

StoryTime Blog Tour - Let Me Fly Free by Mary Fan

It's so great to join the Storytime blog tour and celebrate this wonderful novella! As soon as I heard 'YA LGBTQ fantasy with unicorns', I was already sold.

First a little info about the author Mary Fan. 

Mary Fan is a hopeless dreamer, whose mind insists on spinning tales of “what if.” As a music major in college, she told those stories through compositions. Now she tells them through books—a habit she began as soon as she could pick up a pencil. Mary would like to think that there are many other novels in her bag, and hopes to prove that to the world as well.

Mary lives in New Jersey and has a B.A. from Princeton University. When she’s not scheming to create new worlds, she enjoys kickboxing, opera singing, and blogging about everything having to do with books. (Publishers' author bio)

So, what's the novella about? Elaia is a fire nymph who wants to break free from the agreement that keeps her and the rest of her kind out of the human world. When a murderous creature attacks her idyllic homeland, she is willing to risk punishment and her own life to stop it.

I'm not usually a big novella reader because I think it's hard to encapsulate a whole world in so few pages. This novella does an incredible job of establishing the world and conflict quickly, without it seeming rushed and confusing. This premise has so much scope for further exploration in the 'Fated Stars' series (which is coming out soon).

The mythology of this is really interesting too. A world of unicorns, fairies and nymphs could go wrong and cheesy really quickly but this one completely sucked me in! A lot of this is to do with Mary Fan's writing style, as Elaia's strong voice filtered the world through her perspective.

Elaia is a fantastic character and I hope the 'Fated Stars' series will give more opportunities to get to know her. I loved that she wanted to use her powers not just to 'save the day' but for her own enjoyment too. She's an ambiguous, imperfect and at times quite dark character who felt really fresh and original.

Last but not least, Elaia has a girlfriend! It's brilliant to see an F/F relationship in a fantasy setting - why doesn't this happen more often? Their relationship is portrayed as very real and flawed and I just loved it!

The only part of this that I'm less keen on is the use of adjectives because sometimes the descriptions are a little flowery for my taste.

A teaser for the novella 'Tell Me My Name' is included after 'Let Me Fly Free' and this too sounds like it's going to be a great read.

This was a fun, unique novella that makes me really want the rest of the series! 

Please check out my blog tomorrow for the next novella in the StoryTime Blog tour - DEBBI by George Ebey.

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