Riven

Jane Alvey Harris. CreateSpace, $12.99 paper (326p) ISBN 978-1-5440-5417-9
Harris debuts with a heady psychological fantasy, first in a planned trilogy, that unfolds in the aftermath of trauma. For as long as 17-year-old Emily can remember, she has immersed herself in the magical world of the First Realm, which is occupied by the Fae—creatures that, when visiting Earth, disguise themselves as insects like cicadas and spiders. Emily’s home life offers plenty of reasons to escape: her mother is abusing prescription drugs, her father is in jail, and Emily is responsible for her younger brothers and sisters. After her mother overdoses, Emily, her siblings, love interest Gabe, and her Aunt Nancy travel to a relative’s vineyard to await the release of Emily’s father, whom Emily fears for reasons she is unable to confront. Harris’s writing is polished, and she effectively explores Emily’s maelstrom of psychological coping mechanisms. Secondary characters serve as welcome lodestars during the murky visits to the First Realm. When Emily finally awakens to reality, becoming able to reconcile her fractured identity, readers will feel a great sense of relief. Ages 12–up. (BookLife)
Reviewed on: 04/10/2017
Release date: 03/01/2017
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 326 pages - 978-1-5440-5417-9
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