Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Book Review: Luminaire by Ciye Cho

Title: Luminaire (Florence Waverley #2)
Author: Ciye Cho
Published: December 01, 2012
Rating: 4 of 5 stars

My thoughts: **POSSIBLE SPOILERS!**

*Contains spoilers for Florence, book 1 in this series.*

Luminaire picks up not long after the events of it's predecessor. Florence Waverley has chosen to remain in the underwater kingdom of Niemela with her newfound mer friends.

All seems well for our heroine in this beautiful world under the sea... until things begin to crumble down around her. It begins with Rolan pulling away from her. At first it's small things; but eventually he seems to ignore her presence altogether. Florence doesn't understand the change in Rolan, but she resents it. Instead of dwelling on the issue, Florence decides to throw herself into helping princess Yolee qualify for the upcoming Life Path Tournament.

Truth Dreams begin to plague Florence. An unknown danger is threatening the children of Niemela and Florence is the only one who can save them. To find the answers she seeks, Florence has to enter the deadly maze which mer novices must successfully navigate in order to be brought into their Life Path.

Not only is it time for Florence to find answers—it's also time to prove she truly belongs in in Niemela.

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What a beautiful second installment to this already-beautiful series! :)

First of all - I didn't think Cho's amazingly descriptive writing could get any more fabulous than it already was, but I was so wrong. If Florence blew you away, Luminaire will do so even more! This author has a knack for world building. I cannot even describe how beautiful he's made this magical underwater world to be. It's a place I could ache over. I wish it was real. It's sparkling and luminescent; it's mysterious and enchanting. The setting of this series is unlike any other I've ever encountered. It's memorable and something I'll never be able to forget. It's something you just have to experience for yourself to understand and appreciate.

I love the way Florence grew into herself in this book. My one dislike was that there wasn't enough of Rolan and Florence together. BUT, this is something that clearly had a purpose. So, I can definitely appreciate that. In breaking away from Rolan a bit, Florence came into herself more. Participating in the Life Path tournament really helped her earn a place among the merfolk and also to feel like something more than just an outsider. She not only saves Niemela, but she also comes to a realization while on her journey that helps shape who she is and could become. This book is very much about Florence's self-discovery. When she and Rolan finally confront each other about his behavior, it really helps her to be stronger; to be more adamant about what she wants and where she belongs. So, I'd have to say that the romance, while not as present as I'd like, was very beautifully done and well thought out.

Luminaire does not lack action! From the very beginning, the story moves at a quick, yet natural pace. The Life Path Tournament and maze were definitely the highlights of the story. The new characters introduced were also quite the treat. Mara and Wynn were my favorites. These two, coupled with Florence and Yolee, made quite the interesting mix of personalities. It was wonderful to journey through the maze with them. The dangers of the maze were creative and surprising. I really admire this author and how each and every thing about this series is unique and special; something I've never read. This book is one that'll be very hard to put down once you begin.

The ending to the story was perfection. I just don't think it could've been better any other way. Everyone gets what they deserve; both good and bad. Florence makes a name for herself and gains the respect she deserves. We learn of some new twists in the plot and revelations are definitely made! The epilogue leaves the series very much open... and what an epilogue it was! A complete surprise. Jaw-dropping. I cannot wait to read more about this amazing set of characters living in this enchanting world. ♥

Overall, Luminaire is everything a sequel should be. It was fast-paced and full of action, plot twists, and fun. Our heroine grows internally and comes into her own. She is truly an inspirational character. Ciye Cho will wow you with his knack for painting the perfect world with just words on a page. I promise you, Niemela is a magical place you will want to fall into. I recommend this book (and it's predecessor, of course!) to readers of all ages.

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Book source: From the author for review
Publisher: Studio Amazepop