The Unfinished Song: Initiate
Tara Maya, 2010
(I picked up this ebook on a whim when it was cheap.)
Premise: Dindi is a young girl whose only dream is to become a Tavaedi; one of the dancer-magicians who protect, heal, and guide the people. She can see and speak to the spirits, but her sensitivity constantly gets her into trouble, and she's worried she won't pass the initiation. Kavio is a talented young Tavaedi, one of the few who can dance many colors. His search for new and old techniques puts him at odds with the elders and gets him banished from his clan.
First the good. I was surprised a bit at how much I enjoyed this book. The setting is a fairly unique neolithic pantheistic fantasy world. The characters for the most part feel true, even when they're troubled, and I'm left wanting to know more. More about the minor characters, more about the history, more about the magic, more about the clan structure.
Now the less good. There were more than a couple typos in the text that were quite jarring, though I've seen worse in other self-published work. There were some bits of narration that were repeated unnecessarily and that was really awkward and occasionally downright unpleasant to read. It is almost as if Ms. Maya hadn't decided what age she was writing for, because the tone is fairly mature, but the habit of repeating orienting information belongs only in books targeted at young children.
Now that said, there was enough raw style and talent here that I quite enjoyed the book. Not quite enough to pay 5 dollars for the sequel; not when this book was really short and ended a bit abruptly. But I am still tempted...
3 Stars - A Good Book
Check out The Unfinished Song: Initiate on Amazon.com