May 6, 2015

Book Review: Down the Wormhole by Ana Franco

Down The Wormhole
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

*I received a digital copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review*

I was contacted by the author personally to read Down the Wormhole and give it an honest review. Foremost, it’s always a plus point in my eyes for authors who don’t mind to personally contact the readers to read their books. I don’t know, maybe because I just love authors who love to connect with readers…
The blurb was intriguing that’s why I agreed to do as the author asked. Here, let me cite the part that made me curious about the book:
‘In a city there is a tiny lane that separates two orphanages –one for boys and one for girls. Inside live two very special groups of teenagers. These teenagers carry a secret and leave it tucked safely away in their mysterious lives.’
My mind immediately thought that reading this book would be such an interesting ride. Well… turned out it was fine. I mean, this book wasn’t real bad but I wasn’t crazily in love with it either. The concept was good and had big potential to be an amazing book but it wasn’t delivered well which was quite unfortunate.
The beginning was all over the place. I had a hard time immersing myself into the story. The story went back and forth without clear slates between each event. It was really hard to keep up with constantly changing circumstances. It went on like that until the end of the book. It was seriously pretty frustrating.
Down the Wormhole combined several mythologies as the background characterization of each character on the book. I admit my knowledge of these mythologies is limited so I had to do some side researches to connect with the story. But still, the author didn’t provide clear background story for each character so it was real difficult to relate with them. It was unknown why these gods lived in human world, moreover in orphanages all of places. The main character, Kitty, being the ‘normal’ one was no different. She was described as an orphan without any further identities other than her name, Kitty. Where did she come? How could she be so clueless about her own basic information? She’s been living for almost 18 years, seriously; it was a bit irrational that she’d no idea about all these all this time. And what’s with all the characters and their explosive non-sense demeanors? Kitty, for example, had a serious bad issue of temper. One second she could be all shy and quiet around people, next second she was all angry and cranky to everyone around her. Her exchange banters with Thomas (the Amergin slash hero of the book) might be quite funny sometimes but most of the time it happened unreasonably. I thought she’d be like that just in certain scene but it happened again and again throughout the book. What worse, everyone was like that. Except Natalie, maybe (but then she, too, had a problem with being all defenseless in front of the enemies so she wasn’t much better). It made every conversation they had with each other just made no sense to me. And is it just me or Kitty and Anna (the Aphrodite) actually had some personal issues I missed that’s explained somewhere on the book? No offense. But everything about the characters just didn’t make sense to me…
And talking about the plot, I personally thought that the main issue of the Down the Wormhole was unclear. Only after I reread some parts I could understand the direction of the story. But for some people it might seem like a messed and badly-built plot. Why? A story is basically based on several events which connected in logical and rational ways to build the climax (or climaxes) that leads into some conclusions. Down the Wormhole had a problem about connecting each events. It jumped here and there. The scenes that contained essential information was put randomly thus most readers would definitely miss some points about real purpose of the book.
I must admit that the concept of the story was good with all the mythological background for the characters. I also thought that when the big mystery was unraveled, it did a good job surprising me. I kept waiting for the continuation for this very thing and how it would conclude in the end but sadly it wasn’t dwelled further. This could be a great twist but the author chose to overlook this point and focus on the other thing. For me, though, I think it’s all just a matter of the way the author delivered the concept via some basic elements of writing a story. Creating a raw concept in mind is easy but the tricky part is how to form a good and logical plot (consists of several events and climaxes) regarding the concept. What trickier is how you put them into pages of sensible words. And the trickiest is to make sure that the readers get the message.
But, really, Down the Wormhole had a fresh concept of YA fantasy with the entire mythological thing (as far as I know). The author clearly knows a lot about mythology. I’m sure it’d be such a great story if being told in a better writing style. Hopefully I’ll see more of Ms. Franco’s works about this theme in a much better way of writing :)

Love, read, and review,
Cynthia D.


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