Over the course of the last months, I’ve made friends with LA Jones via our various self-promotions and such with each of us being an Indie Author and I had originally agreed to read and review Tales of Aradia after she had gotten it edited and then republished. Considering that LA Jones has the same kind of social impairment as my son and I’ve seen examples of his writing, I had figured that Tales of Aradia was going to be a thoroughly confusing read with very literal language and no imagery whatsoever. I was wrong and Ms. Jones, I now offer my virtual hand for you to slap (please be gentle) and I figure I deserve a little chastisement. Just don’t be too hard on me, okay?
While I would place Tales of Aradia firmly among the Young Adult genre, at certain points I felt a little old reading it because I would say to myself, “Is that what kids say and do nowadays?” Then I would smile that little smile as adults are wont to do and remind myself that I’m not a teenager anymore because I could almost picture a group of kids looking at me like I’m some sort of fossil and saying, “Geez lady, what’s with you?” Enough said.
I can tell that Aradia is a teenager (well DUH!) and that she is thoroughly absorbed with everything that a teenaged girl’s world centers and revolves around; cute boys, fitting in, social life and learning self-acceptance all while doing her best not to be set apart from the crowd or rock the boat. There’s also the far afield aspect that she knows she’s different and can’t do anything to change it so she’s on her own kind of journey of self-discovery which is never easy for a teenager. She has exceptional healing abilities and can’t manage to hide certain aspects of herself no matter how hard she tries; a tendency toward clairvoyance and strength above and beyond what it is she should be capable of are just scratching the surface and these things bother her.
I can tell that the author, Ms. Jones was heavily influenced by the Twilight Saga but I’m honestly still trying to pin down whether she was on team Jacob or team Edward as she has carved like stone through the storyline the timeless question of divided love and interest. Ms. Jones does however, liberally interlace throughout the story several other mystical and mythical races that to my knowledge are not included in the classic vampire versus werewolf story and I can respect that.
In having to give a star rating because I know I will whether I want to or not (par for the course, ladies and gents), I have to give four stars because I felt that Ms. Jones could’ve developed Aradia better as a character. There are places in the novel that it’s a little difficult to relate to her though the plot does read to the point without any rambling. I also felt that Ms. Jones could’ve included a little more adversity because it’s in the most trying circumstances that Aradia finds her most compassionate and noble character aspects so in her journey of self-discovery she needs to have a little more trouble and be a little less cocky. Now Aradia will have to meet someone that’s more than her match because everyone eventually gets knocked down a rung or two when they’re climbing that cocksure ladder, as it were.
I’m going to have to get the rest of the series now because I have to find out what happens and I have to say honestly to LA Jones, well done, well said and well written!
(review of free book)