Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Light Between Worlds by Laura E. Weymouth Review

Title: The Light Between Worlds
Author: Laura E. Weymouth
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Series: Standalone
Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

                The Light Between Worlds was found through a recommendation list, and I ordered it from my local library. It’s been sitting on my stack for a while, and after I did a complete overhaul, I chose to keep it, since the cover was so pretty and the premise was interesting; honestly, it reminded me of a sort of reverse Narnia: What would happen if you came back from a magical world? I loved the way that one of my favorite trope was turned on its head. As soon as I was finished with Pulp, I pushed The Light Between Worlds to the top of my stack. I finished it in less than a day, and I really enjoyed it. With its unique premise, gorgeous, lyrical prose, and relatable characters, I loved it so much, and I can’t wait for what Laura E. Weymouth has in store for us next!
Siblings Jamie, Evelyn, and Philippa Hapwell were somehow whisked away to a magical world called The Woodlands five years ago, while they were cowering in a London bomb shelter, fearing for their lives. Creating lives as heroes and healers in this mysterious place, populated by all manner of fantastical creatures, they hold a brief refuge in The Woodlands. When they finally returned home to London, nothing changed, except themselves. Now Evelyn spends her days longing for the peace and purpose she found in The Woodlands, and she vows to return, no matter the cost. Her sister, Philippa, meanwhile, just wants to forget what transpired there, determined to find her place in the real world. Flawless and perfect on the outside, she has many friends and a coveted scholarship to a school in America. Tired of always keeping her sister from breaking into pieces, she escapes, intent on making her life her own. But when Evelyn goes missing, she has to return home, forced to confront everything she’s been running from. As she follows paltry clues that her sister has left her, she begins to wonder if Evelyn did indeed find her way back to the one place that feels like home, or if the pull of their two lives ripped her apart…

                This book was a lovely, thought-provoking debut! I really loved it. I enjoyed the way that Weymouth turned the magical world trope on its head; it was really interesting. The pacing was breakneck, and I also liked the way that the book went back and forth between the past and present, between wartime London and the dangerous, seductive setting of The Woodlands; it provided a lot of perspective and context to the Hapwell siblings’ relationship. I only wish that Jamie had had a first-person point of view, as well, because I was left wondering how he was dealing with the transition. I also loved both Evelyn and Philippa’s points of view; they were so similar and so different all at once. The prose was lovely, almost breathtaking, and more often than not, I was going back to reread. One of my favorite things about this book was how prevalent art and poetry was at the forefront of the novel, particularly in Evelyn’s narrative. And the ending! Oh, my goodness, I cried so much throughout this book. Especially over the ending! The only thing that really bothered me was that I wished all three siblings had an equal voice throughout the story. Nonetheless, this debut was really strong, and I will never forget the Hapwell siblings. What an amazing book! Enchanting, seductive, and poetic, The Light Between Worlds knocked me flat. Absolutely fantastic! The bottom line: Gorgeous, emotional and tender, I loved The Light Between Worlds! Absolutely amazing, one of my favorite books of 2018! Next on deck: The Crimes of Grindelwald by J.K. Rowling!

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