Elwyndyn is a Moon Elf and a Realm Jumper. His mission; travel to the Earth, to assist humans experiencing dreams of another time; another life. When hearing their options, what will the humans decide?
Ayana is one such human. After her parents died. she meets a stranger with unusual eyes, eyes very much like hers, and everything she thought she knew changed. Before she knows it, she is on a quest to delve into her past lives. Will she like where this quest takes her, or is she in over her head?
I was first introduced to Raven’s work through Mixed Blood (which will be reviewed later), and so some of this will be a reflection of that first exposure.
The Realm Jumper Chronicles is a richly developed story. This is a severely overdue review, and despite the fact that I’ve had a lot of life happen in between my read and this review I can still remember many of the scenes in detail also tells me this is a wonderfully memorable series that I will enjoy going back to read time and again.
The world development creates a beautiful setting on both sides of the story. Raven weaves both a magical reality on Earth along with an entirely separate realm where the elves live steeped in their own magic and history together with an almost seamless tapestry. She artistically shows some of the stitching in her story’s fabric as the characters move between the two realms. This helps to keep the settings separate and unique to themselves, rather than blurring together like I’ve seen happen in a couple of other tales. Each has their own unique flavor, and it is an interesting blend as the story progresses. Almost every scene has a different combination.
The character development paces the world building in interesting ways. From the modern American characters to the elves who are influenced by the modern world, Raven has managed to highlight both the society’s strengths and weaknesses through the characters. She also has a deft touch in showing how some of the characters cafe at the strictures they live under, and how the grow, adapt, or rebel against those confinements. Some react predictably, others may surprise you.
Though I’ll freely admit to be addicted to Raven’s Realm Jumpers, I cannot precisely put my finger on why. I tend to prefer heavily character driven stories, and these are more plot driven. The pace has a natural flow to it, neither rushed nor too slow. There are a few points where it felt a bit sluggish, and once again I can’t quite pin down why. Because my reviews are vastly over due, and life has thrown much in my lap that has faded my memory of what I had read, I’ve enjoyed re-reading the books, with a similar overall sense. There are a few well-loved story points, which may be what has left me with the impression of a threadbare story, but it really isn’t. There are depths, which the other books explore through the other characters, opening up the other realms, and for the story itself.
Overall, much as I’d love to give this one a full five stars, I’m afraid it only gets a four out of five from me. It is an excellent light summer read, and one I’d highly recommend to anyone who’s interested in elven lore, and an interesting approach to some of the familiar races. Perhaps my own preference for wandering around in the darker side of fantasy is what’s making this feel like there could be a little more to this installment.
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