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Born of Illusion falls into the category of books that I should have loved but didn’t and frankly I am a little upset about that. I wanted to love this book, I even tried to love this book but sadly I just couldn’t.
It was not all bad and there were some positives to be found. The idea is awesome, I loved the roaring twenties setting and that it was about the magicians that were so prolific at the time. I thought the writing was quite good and for the most part Teri Brown manages to create a good atmosphere. I do think the world building could be improved a little, but it was still a very good effort.
The problem in terms of plot and storylines was that nothing really seemed to happen. I found it all quite boring. The first half of the book felt like an endless circle. Anna would worry about her mother, think about her father, fret about her magic, visit her neighbour and mysteriously bump into the equally mysterious Cole, then start the sequence again. She thinks the same things constantly but they are just presented in different ways.
My second issue was the characters, they just weren’t interesting enough. Most of them lacked personality and were just flat. The only ones that had character were Anna’s neighbour and her mother whom I hated.
I struggle to think of a book parent that I have disliked more than this one. She was selfish, stuck-up, rude, petulant, destructive, childish and irresponsible. Her jealousy towards Anna made my blood boil. What made it worse was Anna’s adoration of her. Despite often being angry at her mum I think she adored her and was desperately seeking her approval even though she was threatened and at times scared. I actually felt quite sorry for her.
The nail in the coffin was the love triangle, if you are going to do something that has been so over used you have to do something differently. Brown doesn’t quite manage that, and I didn’t really care who Anna ended up with as I didn’t really have any feelings for either of them.The publisher provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review