17 November 2013

Altered

Author: Gennifer Albin
Series: Crewel World #2
Rating: 3 / 5 stars
Verdict: Buy

I will admit, when I read Crewel back in May, what drew me to the novel was the cover.  And I know that one shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but the cover was just so beautiful, sitting there on a shelf at the library surrounded by all these other books with covers that paled in comparison.  Luckily, the book was just as fascinating as its cover.

When I saw the cover for Altered, I almost puked.  Then I saw the redesigned cover for Crewel and almost lost my lunch again.  To take such a beautiful design and replace it with these news one - I hope someone in the design team got fired after this one.

I didn't judge Altered by its cover, but the analogy seems to hold true.  While Crewel was as beautiful a novel as its initial cover, Altered was about as interesting as its newly revamped cover designs.  With Ad on Earth, the time-space manipulation on her part takes a back seat to a lot of other plots that crop one.  One of these plots is the love triangle between her and the two brothers, which becomes angst ridden and at times over the top and annoying.  We get to meet some interesting new characters on Earth, but the time-space manipulation is what Crewel revolved around and while Altered is still based on the same fundamental ideas, it isn't used as much in the book overall and that led Altered to be a bit more stereotypical of young adult fiction.

In addition, the parts of this novel that focus heavily on the time-space fabric of weaving push at the boundaries of the limitations of my suspension of disbelief.  In Altered, Albin introduces an accelerated timeline; without going into spoiler details, this means that part of the universe is aging/moving through time faster than the other part.  This allows Albin some interesting play with characters and storylines, but it weaves the complicated web of the world to the point where I have to strain myself to believe in this universe at all anymore.  Especially when Albert Einstein gets thrown into the mix.

Overall, Altered falls from the pedestal that Crewel set for the series.  But I do have hopes that the third installment in the series (perhaps the last if it follows the current trilogy theme) will find a way to get back on track.

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