Storm Siren, by Mary Weber
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
“Your curse, Nym. If trained and controlled under the right conditions, you could become Faelen’s greatest weapon in the war.”
DNF at 37%
I wasn’t going to write a review for this originally; I was just going to close it and set it aside. But then I started to think of all of the wasted potential this book had, how it could’ve been spectacular if it had stayed the same as it had in the beginning.
This book starts out with a bang. We are introduced to Nym, a slave with a tongue of steel and a fiery temper. I immediately loved her.
“Try to escape, little imp, and this blade’ll find you faster than a bolcrane goin’ for a baby.” He breathes an extra puff of foul air up my nostrils and grins when I squirm in revulsion.
So, of course, I do what any self-respecting, uncooperative person would do. I spit into his annoying face.
She’s an Elemental with the power to control storms. Because her kind are always male, she shouldn’t exist. You would think, adding in her parents’ brutal death, that she would be a special snowflake, but she didn’t come off as one.
At the start, Nym is being sold to her fifteenth master. Her true identity is revealed, and things go to shit. Then this sadistic slave owner begins to provoke her by choking a five-year-old girl – his new slave – with her collar. Nym explodes, and in the process, she kills the little girl and is racked with guilt.
I was so immersed. I thought this would be a tragic tale full of war and bad-assery, but not long after Nym is sold to Adora, everything goes mute. The book immediately loses its atmosphere, creating long, melodramatic passages of sorrow that made me feel absolutely nothing. It’s like the author put all of her energy into those first couple of chapters.
Secondly, and probably the most important thing: There is absolutely no world building. The reason why Elementals are so rare is explained later on, but it’s rather weak. There is no background about the world, the magic, or the war. I think the author wrote this book expecting us to know everything about it, like every high-fantasy is the same –but they’re not. It came down to the point where, if any attempt at physical description was made, I skimmed it, because the author was obviously not making very much of an attempt.
The pace goes from a sprint to a crawl. Then there’s the love triangle that is obviously forming between Colin and Eogan. I have to say that I appreciate Colin because he’s a very fleshed-out character, and I loved Eogan because he scored a point for diversity (he’s African-American), but to be honest, Eogan has no other characteristic besides the fact that he’s gorgeous, as the author continually reminds us every three pages.
This is a very weak excuse for a high-fantasy. If there had been more put into the complexity of the world and less into how handsome Eogan is, though, I think this could’ve been a five-star book.