Title: The Alchemists of Loom
Author: Elise Kova
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Adventure, Steampunk
Publisher: Keymaster Press
Date published: January 10, 2017
Page Count: 380
A physical copy of the book was kindly provided by the publisher, in exchange for an honest review.
Summary: Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guilds’ resistance fell to the Dragon King. Now, she uses her unparalleled gifts for clockwork machinery – and unscrupulous morals – to contribute to a thriving underground organ market. There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer turned thief, and her talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors. Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne. His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragons’ society for far too long. The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins. When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse. But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go. He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse: A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom.
Having always wanted to read Elise Kova’s Air Awakens Series, but having never actually gotten to it, I found myself having no idea what to expect when first opening The Alchemists of Loom. All that I had to go on was how many people I had seen positively talk about, and photograph, the Air Awakens series. But this is not part of the Air Awakens series at all, and is an entirely new world and story which Kova has created for us.
And I was entirely in love with this imaginative world, by the time I had gotten just a few pages into the book. The world-building was incredibly thought-out and creative–I have not yet come across anything similar to it before and I have been reading high fantasy, thousand-page books since I was thirteen! Since I have also only ever encountered steampunk in cinematic form, I was very happy to see these aspects in a book, especially since they are very effectively described. A lot of thought definitely went into the creation of Loom and Nova, and it shows.
Kova’s descriptions of various settings is detailed without being too detailed. Even as a complete lover of detail, I too will get bored if an author spends paragraph upon paragraph describing one thing. But Kova excels at depicting sights, sounds, and smells with just the right amount of language necessary. When it comes to her characters, the descriptions are also detailed but subtle.
The physical appearances of the characters within The Alchemists of Loom are clear, without Kova spending any amount of extra page space describing what they are wearing, or how they have styled their hair, etc. This precious space is instead, dedicated to the mental processes of characters, character development, and the steady movement of the plot.
I really enjoyed the manner in which this book was paced. Kova did not waste any time on trivial details, and kept things moving along quite steadily. The only times when I felt that the plot slowed only a little, was when we were given the perspectives of the “bad guys.” But this could just be a personal thing of mine, as I usually get bored from seeing the antagonist’s part of the story (in books, as well as films). I’m usually bouncing in my seat, frustrated at the fact that I cannot see what is happening with the heroes of the tale!
The writing was good and easy to follow, and I want to point out that Kova has a talent at depicting action scenes very well. In each action scene (and there are a lot), I found myself clearly picturing what is happening; which character is where, and where a character hit another character, or dodged, or ducked, etc. And this skill really added to the book overall, since it is very adventure and action-y.
As for the plot itself, I am very very happy (almost to the point of giddiness), at the unpredictable twists and turns, as well as the skill which went into bringing this story from mind to paper. Overall, I found this book very enjoyable and entertaining, and I cannot wait for the sequel to be released in July of this year!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elise Kova has always had a profound love of fantastical worlds. Somehow, she managed to focus on the real world long enough to graduate with a Master’s in Business Administration before crawling back under her favorite writing blanket to conceptualize her next magic system. She currently lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, and when she is not writing can be found playing video games, watching anime, or talking with readers on social media. (www.elisekova.com)
THANK YOU FOR READING MY REVIEW! HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK? AND IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT YET, DO YOU WANT TO, OR NOT? HOW COME? LET ME KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS BELOW!