Whenever you read a good book, somewhere in the world a door opens to allow in more light.
I'm just trying to light up the world as much as I can one SciFi/paranormal/fantasy/space opera/time travel book at a time.
WOW!! Where to start? I guess I'll start off by saying that I experienced this little gem through Audible and both the female and male narrators transformed this book from a good story into a complex, beautifully woven tale. There was an intricate volley of dueling POVs. Suuurre they would have worked had I read this in paperback BUT the differing character voices/ personalities really delineated and clarified not only who was speaking but the inflections and language changes helped to solidify what the characters were actually feeling. I think the narrating truly made the whole experience AMAZING! Okay, back to business. This is an extremely well written, affecting and flowery (pun intended...you'll see) tale, not unlike Romeo and Juliet, that asks us to suspend all we know to be true in lieu of a new reality just for a bit. That alongside an ensemble of unforgettable, well honed, 3 dimensional, extremely likeable/loathe-able characters were the tantalizing ingredients for an intellectually yummy yarn that I devoured in 2 days. Yes, that equaled a lot of alone time, sitting in my car, looking like a creeper. I didn't mind looking like a lunatic so long as I got to be immersed in this unique love story a little while longer. This is where I should stop gushing and start explaining what the book was about. Suspend your beliefs with me:
1st- There is a French family, more importantly a male member nicknamed Cluck, of traveling performers who deftly climb trees emulating winged fairy like creatures. They all have a very unique attribute. All members are born with feathers interspersed with their "normal" hair. The dominant/more acceptable color is black. Entirely black feathers are the phenotypic attribute that marks one as a Corbeaus family member. Cluck is a troubled, underappreciated, extremely bright and capable person that elicits empathy and a huge helping of love as well as strength but never pity. A great aspect of this book is how much of the feels I actually felt for every character, not only the primary ones.
2nd- There is another family, the Palomas, that is embroiled in this twisted tango. A rival performing family of artists, more notably a female Paloma name Lace, that speak Spanish, dress and perform as mermaids as well as possessing their own unique phenotypic attribute. These water loving faux-aquatic creatures of legend are born with scaly birthmarks that mark them as members of the Paloma family.
3rd- These families do NOT get along. In fact there is more than a rivalry between the two. There is an all out, bloody, War Of The Roses, Judge Judy needing battle brewing. The heat between these two families is so suffocating and all encompassing that it threatens to scorch and burn both families, reducing both to nothing more than wind scattered ashes. This is far from the salubrious (thesaurus' contribution) environment needed for a budding (albeit awkward and reluctant at first) star crossed romance.
Envisioning the oddities both families posses is not the only time we are required to momentarily expand our definitions of what's possible. That ending...damn that odd excuse for an ending! I won't say too much, I don't want to spoil the ride, but I will say that it was a weird, unexpected, unrealistic finale to a beautifully crafted tale that both completely tied up the straggling loose ends but also raised some other questions. It really made me want to stay in Cluck and Lace's world a little while longer to see what other crazy stuff happens..the sign of a good, no AMAZING story. It's not only a love (of various forms) story but a literary lesson in forgiveness, redemption, personal growth and acceptance. It truly is a voluptuous yarn (too bad for the bizarre twisty ending that was hard to believe and a copout IMO).