By K.M Alexander
Oh great, another fantasy book, I thought. Although it is the primary genre we get requests for reviews for, I can honestly say that it has never been my favorite genre of book; but, we all occasionally grab one we aren’t necessarily fond of. So I pulled up my big girl panties and settled in to read The Stars Were Right by K.M Alexander.
Wow! Talk about knocking me off my snobbish pedestal. This book changed the way I look at fantasy as a whole. It was also loaded with a ton of what I’d consider mystery as well. I read straight through the night and couldn't put it down. Mr. Alexander is a wizard at creating a world one could only dream about.
Lovat is a large multi-leveled metropolitan city that has been built on many cities before it that have crumbled into the Sunk. I truly cannot do it justice but it reminded me of NYC far in the future where burrows remained that were known for specific ethnicities. Except in this futuristic tale, the ethnicities aren't quite as similar to one another as those of today
The residents of this metropolis range from human to dimanians -horned individuals - to enur - a sort of amphibian - to daugers - who wear brightly painted mask hiding all but their eyes- and other interesting species that make the metropolis quite the melting pot. They all live and work together just like in current day NYC.
Our narrator and protagonist is Waldo Emerson Bell, a caravan boss who returns with his crew and partner, Wensem,, from a long journey picking up goods to deliver them back to Lovat. It’s a month gone, but he takes off for a month when he returns. They deliver the cargo and prepare for a month in Lovat - which for Wensem is time with his newborn son and for Waldo it's just rest and relaxation. Though it seems as soon as Waldo begins to relax bodies start dropping around him, all ritualistic killings connected in some way to him.
What began as Waldo's one month vacation turned in to running from the cops who were hot on his tail, trying to escape the assassin who continues to kill those connected to him, and trying to solve the case a clear his name before more people die.
With mild nudity and violence, Mr. Alexander has created a world I became deeply immersed in. His imagery was unreal as he showed you the dark streets with sodium lights of level 2 instead of telling you. The smells of the noodle stands jumped right off the page. The only sunlight shines brightly in the sky from level seven and the buildings that rise above it. Mr. Alexander gives us the sights and sounds of it all.
I highly recommend this book even to those who might be weary of a fantasy book. I can't believe how much I loved it. If he writes another one I'll be the first in line.