Thursday, September 17, 2015

Review ~ The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore

Series: standalone
Genre: YA magical realism
Publication Date: September 15th, 2015
Publisher: Thomas Dunne
Goodreads Description: 
For twenty years, the Palomas and the Corbeaus have been rivals and enemies, locked in an escalating feud for over a generation. Both families make their living as traveling performers in competing shows—the Palomas swimming in mermaid exhibitions, the Corbeaus, former tightrope walkers, performing in the tallest trees they can find.

Lace Paloma may be new to her family’s show, but she knows as well as anyone that the Corbeaus are pure magia negra, black magic from the devil himself. Simply touching one could mean death, and she's been taught from birth to keep away. But when disaster strikes the small town where both families are performing, it’s a Corbeau boy, Cluck, who saves Lace’s life. And his touch immerses her in the world of the Corbeaus, where falling for him could turn his own family against him, and one misstep can be just as dangerous on the ground as it is in the trees.

Beautifully written, and richly imaginative, The Weight of Feathers is an utterly captivating young adult novel by a talented new voice. 

The cover was the first thing that got me interested in The Weight of Feathers--IT'S SO PRETTY--but all the fantastic things I kept hearing about it was what convinced me to pick it up. Plus, I loved the sound of the romance.
Source: I received an e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

When I finished this book, I didn't have any idea of how to write a review for it—not just because it would be tough to do the story justice, but also because I don't have many detailed thoughts on the characters, plot, writing, romance, setting, etc. Just reactions and feelings, though even those are tough to place my finger on. 

Here's what I can place my finger on, however:

  • The tone/vibe to the story had a certain airiness—the tone, the writing, the ending—but also held a certain weight to it. It really did feel like the weight of feathers. 
  • The magical realism was subtle, which made the story, the feud, the romance—everything—so much more captivating.
  • There was an ugly feud that felt held together both loosely and strongly together. Superstition seemed like wisps of smoke, but the anger and rivalry built on history seemed to make the superstition strong, almost impossible to break.
  • The romance was a magical, forbidden love. I loved the idea of the couple right away and I loved their struggle with being from different sides of the feud.
  • The writing was beautiful! The tone had a lot to do with it, but there were so many sections that gave the impression of just . . . being wonderfully worded. I don't know how else to explain it.
  • There was a poignant conclusion that brought tears to my eyes. It left a really good last impression. 
My love for this book was the slow burn kind. I initially had a tough time getting into it because of the third person POV (I've been too used to first person) and slower pace, but I got more and more into it as I read more. It was a slow build, my love and appreciation for this novel. Everything I listed above came together beautifully to form magical, romantic tale. I definitely recommend giving this one a try!

2015 challenges this book counts towards:
Netgalley and Edelweiss Reading Challenge
2015 Debut Author Challenge
Dive into Diversity

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