I bought a Kindle last week and I am so excited to start to read some more ebooks! While I love physical books and will never stop buying them, it will be so much easier to read ARCs and other books that I can’t get a physical copy of. I broke in my Kindle by reading an ARC I have had on my TBR for a while-November Fox.
*I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
November Fox Book 1. Following Joy by E.E. Bertram
While I was really intrigued in the story of this book, I felt that the writing and character development just held this book back from being great. ‘November Fox’ follows a music star ‘November’ as she receives a mystical cube form the ‘Cube Maker’ and goes on a fantasy journey as she explores her purpose in life and the importance of love and relationships in our lives. We see Novembers story through the narration of ‘The Architect’ in the form of letters he has written and sent to our world, ‘The World of Form’ from his dimension/universe. We also get little insights from Erica, a human on Earth who stumbles upon these letters and goes on her own journey of discovery and meaning.
This book has a sort of ‘Alice in Wonderland’ feeling as November is thrown into magical and strange worlds. She makes a friend early on, Klaus a talking German elephant, and meets a number of characters throughout her journey to ‘activate’ the Cube. I was actually really intrigued in the plot, and that was the main reason I kept reading. I wanted to find out what happened to November, what the meaning of the cube is, and how everything tied together. The ending was a little anti-climactic, but it really set up for a sequel.
I also enjoyed the messages that are share throughout the book. Each location November visits explores something new about herself and life- about heart, mind, soul, purpose and love. I though the small ways each of these lessons were woven into the book was very cute, even if the dialogue at many times was very stilted and forced. I wish Novembers character was a little more organic, and with more development some of her dialogue and actions would not feel so forced.
While there were some great things about the book, overall I felt the writing and characterization let down the really unique plot, interesting narrator and strong messages. The dialogue and phrasing, as I mentioned before, felt very forced and November’s character as a whole spoke and acted younger then her age. At times I got lost in the rambling sentences and large amounts of philosophical dialogue that just did not feel like it fit in to the scene. Klaus, while endearing, just annoyed me at some times with his dialogue and childish nature-though he is a small talking elephant, so that could be expected.
Overall I enjoyed the story and the concept behind the book, especially the little philosophical discussions and messages laced throughout. However, the writing and dialogue made it hard to fully enjoy and appreciate the book as a whole, and with a little more development of the characters I think it could be an interesting series.
This book also had the option to download an app and scan images in the book to view some augmented reality items, listen to some music and watch some short videos that compliments the book. I used it once or twice, and while it is a really cool feature, it was sometimes hard to use and I felt fine reading the book without it.