Sunday, February 19, 2017

Review: Soleil by Jacqueline Garlick

Title: Soleil
Author: Jacqueline Garlick
Series: The Illumination Paradox #3
Genre: YA/Romance/SteamPunk
Publisher: Amazemo Books
Publication Date: July 31st, 2016
Edition: Kindle Edition, 342 pages
Source: Free Download from Author's newsletter
Purchase: Amazon US

Losing her would send him spiraling into darkness. 
     With Eyelet gasping in his arms and a toxic storm threatening to annihilate the Commonwealth, Urlick must find a way to save his beloved and fast. Out of the mist appears an unusual man, claiming to possess the power to heal Eyelet. The townspeople immediately label him a sorcerer and call for his death, but Urlick trusts the stranger. He whisks him off to the Academy where it becomes clear Eyelet is running out of time. She must drink her father’s antidote or perish. 
     Together, Eyelet and Urlick brave the toxic woods to battle an Infirmed Flossie for the stolen necklace. In a race against time, they embark on a harrowing journey through the hellfires of Embers, where they meet up with the resurrected form of a familiar enemy—now the leader of the Dark World. Along the way, the pair unearths a sinister truth. Could the Vapours really be what they appear to be? 
Is this the end of the known world? 
     Soleil is the third and final installment of the long-awaited Illumination Paradox Series. A swashbuckling, nail-biting, romantic adventure, filled with mechanical beings and puzzling happenings, with a shocking, otherworldly conclusion.


So, I finally read this book. And while I didn't enjoy it as much as I wanted to, I cam still glad that I read it. I have forgotten a lot of what happened in the last book, and that made the start of this book a little confusing for me at first, but I started to remember enough to start to enjoy it, sadly that didn't last very long.

My problem I have had with this series from the start is the inconsistencies in the writing. There's a character that is supposed to not have arms and uses his legs and feet for everything, but multiple times in the series he does actions that would require him to have arms. His chapters are also written in a way that would imply that he has an accent. I assume that it was supposed to be how Hagrid talks, but the author would only have him not pronounce H's if the word started with an H. But, that is an accent that doesn't make any sense. 

There are also times when her writing contradicts itself. For example, near the end of the book, Eyelet is stated that she is dressed "like a boy" wearing slacks and boots rather than skirts, but then a few pages later she is described to be lifting her skirts to run better. There are also a good number of grammar errors, and not where a character who is speaking or narrating would be using poor grammar. I think that's the largest downfall to her writing this series in first person and writing multiple POV's with characters that are supposed to be less intelligent. They are inconsistent, half the time they'll be using poor grammar because they are supposed to not have any schooling to have proper grammar, but within the same chapter, they'll start speaking like they have.

This book felt a little all over the place more than once. I wasn't sure what was happening half the time. The dialog was painful multiple times as well. Especially between Eyelet and Urlick. By the way, I still really hate their names. I get that authors want to give their character's uncommon names, but this is just ridiculous. 
The Alice in Wonderland parallels that were shoehorned in, felt out of place to me. It is strange that the book is mentioned as being something that exists in that world as I never had the indication that Brethren is part of this world.

At about 65% in, I found myself skimming the book over reading it. The first book was so fun and while it too had flaws, I had fun reading it and was wrapped up in the story and what was going to happen next. But as the series went on, I found myself not really caring as much about the characters or their struggles anymore. The characters are selfish people, who masquerade as people who care about people that are outside their group, but everything they do, every decision they make only seem to benefit themselves. 
I don't mind selfish characters, humans are inherently selfish beings, but they are constantly pretending to be better and more compassionate than the people who used to be in charge, but they aren't. They just think they are.

The ending to this book was just weird, and a little confusing. But that might have more to do with me skimming the last half of the book and not really feeling all that invested in what was happening. 

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