Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Threads, by Erin Latimer

Threads is a compelling, fun read, perfect for the beach or poolside. It is light as whipped cream or champagne bubbles, and just as delightful.

Alice is a 20-something whose boyfriend has just broken up with her. She lives with her parents and is shy; she also considers herself as a mousy, plain girl. When she gets a letter stating she has inherited Threads, she goes to visit it.

The store seems to be a boring shop that sells vacuums, until (SPOLER ALERT)

...Alice discovers  the Threads in the title are actually threads of magic she can manipulate, and the store sells magical items. Not vacuums. Yay! 

She and her staff, an elder witch, a tiger, and an elf, work in the shop (which moves to different cities depending on its whims.) I'm not usually an Elf type of person, but Latimer makes Demetri and the other characters very real. Their conversations and interactions are delightfully effortless. I adored Shakra, the tiger, as well as the friendship between Alice and the Azura, the older witch who teaches the girl magic and how to run the store.
Image courtesy of colourbox.com

The first section sets the scene, and enter two very different, enticing men: Alexie Ambrose, the popstar of the magic world, and Altair, a thief. Both are dangerous and exciting, and their interactions bring a round of adventures, complete with pretty clothes, limos, and more champagne.

I do see the Kindle version, at least, is immature in its formats. Formatting an ebook is an art unto itself, and the paragraph indents double up throughout the book. (I agree in advance I'm being uber-picky, but it is distracting.)

However, for 99 cents - NINETY NINE CENTS!!!! - this is a great choice. Latimer's characterization overcomes the format issues (as well as a need for another edit) and make this a wonderful book for the summer, if you like magic and adventure, plus a bit of romance. 

What I liked:

Demetri (not usually an elf gal, as I said, but he is well done.)

Alice herself - great main character.

The cover - Gorgeous.

Alice's friendships - I'm always up for a book that showcases female friendships. Alas, they are hard to find!

Altair - The thief is wickedly handsome, and the sparks between him and Alice fly.

The price - Again, 99 cents! For a week's entertainment! Unheard of.

The world - Latimer's creation is real. I can picture the shop and the characters.

The length - Chapters and chapters of magical reading.

Readability - Is that a word? In any case, Threads has that "elusive compulsive factor" I'm always on about. Latimer's style is effortless and breezy, and her chapter endings kept me reading far past my bedtime.

What I didn't like:

All the "A" names. I got a bit confused between Alexie, Altair, and Azura.

The formatting - A simple redo of the indent tabs would really improve the reading experience.

The main storyline - Latimer deftly creates her own living, breathing world, but the plot gets a bit lost in the result. However, it's not a huge deal, since there is excitement throughout. Things certainly pick up in the second half of the book, but I felt as though the author had to shuttle the characters to Altair's mansion to really get things going. (As an author, I sympathize. Moving characters around is exhausting.) 

I must add here: I was never bored, and I give this book a solid four stars for pure delightful fun and value.


Catherine Stine said...

I like the idea of magic as threads. And, yeah, you can't beat 99 cents!

Catherine Stine said...

I like the idea of magic as threads. And, yeah, you can't beat 99 cents!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Unknown said...

Sounds like a delight.
Great review, Alison! Especially liked the part about .99!
~Just Jill

Alison DeLuca said...

Thanks! Yes, this was a fun book for the summer. No need to spend over 10$ for a great Kindle read (cough, Big Six, cough)