Lotus Blue

Cat Sparks. Talos, $15.99 trade paper (384p) ISBN 978-1-940456-70-6
Australian author Sparks’s debut novel, set in a strange postapocalyptic world, is all middle with no beginning or end. Star is a child of the Sand Road who dreams of wealth and adventure in the port town of Fallow Heel. Quarrel is an ancient warrior who knows his current mission will be his last. Both are forced onto the Black Sea, not to seek their fortunes but to continue a war that most of the world thinks is over. Sparks demonstrates technical skill with prose, but the start of the book is a confusing jumble, fragmented by the introduction of several characters’ points of view scattered over a variety of settings. The mood is relentlessly bleak. The protagonists lack agency, which leads to a feeling of prologue rather than resolution. A satisfying conclusion is impossible; the book ends with the feeling that a stage has been set, but the story is yet to come. That promise is the only hope Sparks offers in this relentlessly grim narrative. Agent: Jill Grinberg, Jill Grinberg Literary. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/30/2017
Release date: 03/01/2017
Open Ebook - 388 pages - 978-1-940456-73-7
Paperback - 388 pages - 978-1-945863-15-8
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