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The Lineage of Tellus Book1: Memories &…
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The Lineage of Tellus Book1: Memories & Murder (Volume 1)

by L J Hasbrouck

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
If you had asked me how I was going to review this book after I had gotten about a third of the way through, I would have told you "maybe two stars". The characters were so flat and seemed to exist to only tell a constant string of sex-related jokes and innuendos. This all but pushed aside the plot and had me rolling my eyes and wishing they'd get back to the actual story. Don't get me wrong, I love humor and lighthearted stuff, but there was just too much of it and it was hurting the story rather than making it more interesting. I couldn't bring myself to care about the characters, but I kept going. I wanted to give this a chance because there was potential with the storyline, if only the characters would stop getting distracted from it.

I'm glad I stuck with it. Somewhere around the halfway mark, the author seemed to find her stride. Probably not coincidentally, this corresponded to the number of innuendos dropping and the characters moving along with the plot. There were still innuendos from that point on, but they were much better placed so that whenever they occurred, I found myself laughing rather than eye rolling. I think that's probably the balance the author has to try to reach: somewhere between humor and plot. Space the jokes out and they have a much greater effect. The characters at this point also started to get more development and became a lot more interesting. They had started out somewhat stereotypical and flat, but they did get some more personality as the story went on. Some of the plot felt a little forced, particularly at the beginning, but overall the story fit together. This book also had something that I thought was unique: illustrations. Spaced throughout the book were pictures of the characters and scenes and these were quite good. It was neat to have a visual of the characters.

I think it's probably a common problem with newish writers that the beginning of the story doesn't end up as polished as the rest; with a few more edits, I think the beginning could have been improved, too. It still read like this was an early book, but I do truly think the author has potential. I'd definitely be willing to read more in the series because I think she's going to keep improving the more she writes.

Overall, I did end up enjoying this book, something I didn't think I'd say at the beginning. I'm glad I did like it because it was a refreshing read; the book I read before this one had been filled to the brim with misogyny and this one was so very much the opposite of that one, which was what I needed. This was lighthearted, which I always appreciate. (I'm not a fan of "dark" fantasy- humor and overall positivity are what I like and this book had both.) I'll always be intrigued by books with "broad sexuality" because I love reading things with an LGBT spin- just please, tone down the frequency of innuendos next time. I'm thinking I'll give this 3 1/2 stars because the first third of the book didn't pull me in, but I'm confident that I'd give her later books a higher star count. This young author does have potential. ( )
1 vote merigreenleaf | Jun 14, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
For a story with such promising elements: a mysterious assasin, magic forces, and fantasy realm lands, this book was killed by pedestrian writing. There was no excitement drummed up, no empathy engeandered. In short there was no charm to keep me engaged or even curious about the outcome. I can't imagine the YA audience would be any more likley to pay attention. Sadface.
  the_reader | Jun 1, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Memories and Murder is the author's first book. The dialogue between the characters occasionally does not feel quite correct. However the characters motivations were mainly believable excepting the Elder keeping secrets to himself from the main characters.

There are many occurrences of sexual innuendo sometimes too many on the same page. The two boys and two girls on a quest who do not pair up as expected was a refreshing twist.

I would recommend this book to any young adults with an interest in fantasy novels. This book shows imagination, decent plot lines and a set of enjoyable characters. ( )
1 vote jimleask | May 15, 2014 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Memories & Murder, is book 1 of The Lineage of Tellus, a fantasy series. Ashei Greyhawke is a student at the Academia near her small village. She comes home from her job at a tavern to find her mother dead, murdered by magic: her heart has been removed from her body with no visible wounds.
Her best friends, Tristane, a mage in training and Marianne, a fellow student, decide to embark on quest to find Ashei's mother's murderer. They enlist the help of Finn, a swordsman who is working as a teaching assistant at their school. Together they embark on an adventure involving monsters, shape-shifters, dragons, giants, demons and pirates. In the end they not only find the solution to the mystery but find themselves as well.

Memories and Murder is the first book by a young author and the author's youth and inexperience is clear in this book. The dialogue is often a bit clunky and unbelievable. There are fairly frequent examples of word misuse (precluding instead of preceding). Since this is an early review copy, these errors would be helped by a good editor. The author's idea of what constitutes an "old man" is also an indication of her youth. Also, the adventurers head off into the frozen wilderness with very little in the way of information or clear goals.

Other reviewers have commented on the sexual content in the novel. I would agree that the constant sexual innuendos, jokes and references can be a bit excessive and don't really further the plot or character development. However, prospective readers should not be concerned that there is explicit sexual content. While there are many references to sexuality, including homosexuality, there is no actual sexual activity, beyond kissing and touching, described in the book. The modern sounding dialogue and attitudes to sexuality and the role of women are actually rather refreshing.

The strengths of the book are in the world building and the character development. I genuinely wanted to know what was going to happen to these characters. The descriptions of characters, settings and action scenes were very well done and show this young author's potential. The author has included some illustrations (of the graphic novel type) which are quite well done. I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy fantasy with a more modern sensibility and who are interested in discovering a new talent. ( )
1 vote carod | May 10, 2014 |
This book would appeal to a young adult with a high tolerance to continuous sexual innuendo. Under that is a strong plot and well developed characters. ( )
1 vote JaiW | Apr 29, 2014 |
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