Monday, October 20, 2008

CSFF Blog Tour: Beyond the Reflection's Edge Day 1

This month, the blog tour focuses on Beyond the Reflection's Edge by Bryan Davis. I've loved Bryan's Dragons in Our Midst series, so I was very interested to see what he had up his sleeve for this young adult book.

It's the story of Nathan Shepherd, whose life is shattered when his special investigator father and concert violinist mother are killed. Nathan has to unravel why they were murdered and what this has to do with a creepy man named Mictar. Could it have something to do with the odd mirror that his father left for him? Soon Nathan and a young woman named Kelly are thrust into a life-or-death adventure that takes them through multiple realities, all while trying to keep Mictar from achieving his goal of interfinity.

When I read the book, I have to admit, I wasn't all that impressed. To put it bluntly, I was confused for the first couple of chapters. Bryan threw a lot of characters at me in rapid succession, some of which lived, some of which died. The problem was I didn't know how they related to Nathan. As a result, I had a difficult time deciding whether or not I should care about them.

The plot also left me scratching my head from the early going. I know that we should always start a story in media res, but in this case, I wodnered if maybe Bryan didn't start things a bit too media, if you understand what I mean. A little more build up to explain the characters at least might have been helpful.

My only other complaint is about the villain, Mictar. I couldn't wrap my head around him. I'm not so concerned as to who or what he is. He's clearly some sort of supernatural individual of some sort and I'm sure that will become more and more clear as the stories unfold over succsessive books. But I was completely mystified as to his motivation. We're told that he wants to bring about something called "interfinity." As near as I could tell, that involved merging disparate realities into one. But I couldn't figure out why Mictar would want to do that. What benefit would he get? Maybe that will unfold in the future books but it left Mictar seeming a bit hollow to me.

What really worked well was Nathan's relationship with Kelly. I have to admit that it left me scratching my head a little, but that was fine. Does Nathan have romantic feelings for her? Is it just platonic? It'll be interesting to see how this all plays out. I'll have more to say about Kelly tomorrow.

So that's about it. I was a bit confused by the book but it was a fun adventure through multiple realities. Go and see what everyone else as to say:

Brandon Barr
Jennifer Bogart
Justin Boyer
Keanan Brand
Kathy Brasby
Jackie Castle
Valerie Comer
CSFF Blog Tour
Stacey Dale
D. G. D. Davidson
Shane Deal
Janey DeMeo
Jeff Draper
April Erwin
Karina Fabian
Marcus Goodyear
Andrea Graham
Todd Michael Greene
Katie Hart
Timothy Hicks
Joleen Howell
Jason Joyner
Mike Lynch
Terri Main
Rachel Marks
Melissa Meeks
Rebecca LuElla Miller
Eve Nielsen
John W. Otte
Steve Rice
Ashley Rutherford
Mirtika or Mir's Here
Chawna Schroeder
Greg Slade
James Somers
Steve Trower
Speculative Faith
Jason Waguespac
Laura Williams
Timothy Wise


Valerie Comer said...

I'm not quite done the book, so I'm disappointed to know Mictar's motives don't begin to come clean by the end. I, too, have spent awhile scratching my head and while I know this is the first book of a series, I was hoping for a bit more wrap-up I guess.

Ah well.

Robert Treskillard said...

As always, great review, John!


Yeah, didn't really know what to make of ol' Mictar. I knew I was supposed to be afraid of him (on behalf of the characters), but not really WHY other than the fact that he wasn't someone you'd invite to the Sunday School picnic.