I bought this book knowing it was going to be atrocious. After all, when a 17 year old author takes it upon herself to spam author's boards, twitter, facebook, and anywhere else she can think of with stuff trying to "promote" her book, well.... you know it can't be good.
However, what I didn't know was that this book was going to be one of the most unintentionally hilarious things I had ever read, rivaling only Gloria Tesch' "Maradonia" series in the pure ineptness of its author.
Before even getting into the story, there's the words the author uses. Jafar. Zapatos (the Spanish word for shoes, which in her story means years). Trabajador for the name of a city. Oh, honey. No. Just no.
The story begins with Harlow Grimm, a fourteen year old girl (although the narrator tells us that time doesn't mean the same thing...maybe...in this world). A prince named Jafar (...yes, Jafar) spots Harlshow and is instantly enamored with her beauty. But there's a problem! Harlow is engaged to another. Oh, and Jafar is an asshat. He takes her back to his castle, rapes her repeatedly and marries her. At one point he puts on a show of having beautiful doves be mercilessly killed by a cage of hawks, for no other reason than the lolz. (That doesn't at all remind me of Jace Wayland's story from The Mortal Instruments series, which was *itself* ripped off from the classic movie Kes... but I digress).
Harlow immediately runs into the arms of her savior, a guy named Roswell who is sort of a werewolf, sort of a demon and (according to the author) ALL MAN. Meanwhile, Darian, her aforementioned fiance, sets out to rescue her. But then he gets possessed by some evil force of evil, but not after Harlow RANDOMLY develops psychic powers for no other reason than to spot Darian speaking with another woman and thinking he's given up on her. (Note that she NEVER uses these powers again).
Meanwhile, random mystical creatures of mysticalness start wandering around. Oh, and there's random bits of time travel, to Feudal Japan, to the year 2045, and beyond.
Back in the story, we find out Harlow is pregnant. Roswell dies. But Roswell is not *quite* dead. Jafar reappears and Harlow lets him become her new companion, and...
Yeah, that's right. The guy who RAPED HARLOW REPEATEDLY has now reappeared. And Harlow forgives him. AND SHE KIND OF THINKS HE'S CUTE.
Excuse me while I sit in the corner and weep.
Anyway, the author goes on to describe a challenge sort of thing that Roswell has to undergo before he can return to the world of the living, during which THE AUTHOR DIRECTLY PLAGIARIZES SEVERAL LINES OF DIALOGUE AND A SCENARIO FROM THE MINISERIES THE TENTH KINGDOM.
I'm sorry if you thought that nobody else would remember this miniseries, Bree. Can I call you Bree? But yeah, I remember it. Remembered it well enough that when I read that scene I said OH SHE SHE DIDN'T and immediately googled that scene to be sure that I wasn't making things up. Just to clarify that I'm not stabbing at windmills:
"Point taken." He cleared his throat, though the frogginess remained as he spoke. "Your task is simple. Of the two doors, one leads to you the next trial, the other leads to a horrible death. You may only ask one and only one question, but I always lie."
"I have a question all right," I took the frog, holding it up in front of my face.
"Hey, only my girlfriend can touch me there," he croaked.
"What is the point of having a door with horrible death behind it? What does that achieve? What is the purpose of your life? To be a pain?" I unconsciously opened one of the doors and tossed him inside. As I turned, massaging my temples, I heard a loud explosion that had come from inside the left door which I had thrown the obnoxious frog into.
"Door on the right it is," I spoke to no one in particular.
And from The Tenth Kingdom:
Two doors to safety or death are guarded by a talking frog who offers one question, but claims to always lie (which would make it unsolvable as a logic problem since the rules themselves are in doubt). By now the father of the protagonist Virginia has had it with this kind of puzzle.
Tony: All right, all right. Wait, wait! I have a question! What is the point in having a door that has a horrible death behind it? Huh? (picks up frog)
Frog: Get your hands off me!
Tony: What does that achieve?
Frog: What are you doing?
Tony: I mean, what is the purpose of your life? Just to be a pain?
Frog: Don't touch me there, only my girlfriend touches me there! (Tony throws the frog through one of the doors) WHOA! (Tony slams the door, there's a large explosion and fireball)
Wolf: I guess it's the other one.
Even if the writing wasn't REPREHENSIBLE. Even if it wasn't obvious the author just discovered what a thesaurus was. Even if it weren't for the disturbing fact that her MAIN CHARACTER WILLINGLY ALLOWS HER RAPIST TO JOIN HER AND FINDS HERSELF ATTRACTED TO HIM, HAVING SUFFERED NO TRAUMA AT ALL FROM HIS TREATMENT OF HER, the fact that the author PLAGIARIZED is enough to make me hope, with everything I have, that this author NEVER writes another novel AGAIN.
Anyway, back to the story, Roswell comes back from the dead, her former fiance goes insane and IS REVEALED TO BE HER BROTHER, he kills their mother, and Harlow continues being an idiot Mary Sue when she discovers that not only is she an elf, she's a ROYAL elf, and she's fated to save the world.
The entire story devolves into the author's fever dream of fantasies about herself, Harlow spits out her kids and, what do you know, they're mystical magical babies of MAGIC.
The time travelers appear from all different points in the future, INCLUDING THE MOTHERFREAKING HOLOCAUST. O NO U DIDN'T BREE. U DID NOT JUST USE THE HOLOCAUST FOR DRAMA IN UR STUPID, STUPID POOPSTORM OF A STORY.
Just...*sigh*. They all save the world. Whatever. The Hell's Gate breaks open and splits the world into the continents we know today. K' then. Harlow marries her demon-werewolf hybrid and they spit out another kid and the origins of angels and Christianity are revealed and... whatever.
It's just stupid. Nothing makes any sense. The author steals ideas from basically every other book she has ever read. As I was going through the story I was able to pinpoint exactly which stories she stole from.
Bree, you have no idea what originality is. You have no idea what good storytelling is. Please, stop calling yourself a published author. You're just embarrassing yourself. I would feel sorry for you if it weren't for the fact that I find you hilarious.
And for that reason alone, I recommend any of you who needs a good laugh, or to feel better about your own writing, to buy this book. I mean, come on.
Gloria Tesch couldn't have done a better job.