Author: Anne Barwell
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Anne Cain
Rating: 4.00 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 05/30/2011
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Tomas Kemp has two successful novels to his name and the true belief that a successful sequel is only a matter of a little inspiration. When Tomas meets a mysterious stranger under the branches of an old oak tree, he feels compelled to tell him about a book he holds dear and the sequel he wants to read. But Cathal doesn’t share that deep belief that the sequel Tomas seeks ends happily. Cathal has seen enough of a world where stories are real to know that happy ever after is sometimes the dream that won’t come true.But stories have never let Tomas down, and as he follows Cathal across the reality shift between their worlds, he learns that Cathal is right: Happy ever after is never just given-but sometimes, it can be fought for and won.
Tomas has a problem, he is a writer with writer’s block. At his sister’s urging, he decides to work through his block by spending some time tucked away in a quaint inn.
He’s somewhat socially inept, and this comes across as being a little prickly and definitely reclusive. He just wants to be left alone to get on with his writing. Instead he soon finds a mystery that intrigues him, but the most interesting thing Tomas finds, almost immediately, is the mysterious Cathal.
I found the initial part of this novel rather odd. There was a lot of emphasis on Tomas being rude, yet to be honest some of the people he encountered were far stranger and not particularly polite. In general the book felt a little slow to start. So, apart from the scenes with Cathal, I found the first section a bit uneven. Luckily Cathal was intriguing enough to keep me reading, and I was warming up to Tomas. It was clear from the outset that there was some attraction and chemistry between these two.
Once the characters are in Cathal’s world, well, things get a lot more interesting. With the shift to Cathal’s world, Naearu, the pace and action pick up, as does the danger.
Without offering any spoilers as to what happens to Tomas and Cathal, let me just say there is a second book Magic’s Muse which continues their story.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
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