Atancia is a great story about a fantastic supernatural world hidden in our very own. I usually don't care for urban fantasies, but it worked in this scenario. However, for some reason, I wasn't engrossed by it. Let me try to explain:
- I really like Atancia (Atty). She is very relatable, intelligent and kind; and I think her misgivings just make me like her more. She is not the strong and powerful kind of heroin, but she struggles to be the best she can despite her (almost pathological) shyness. She (mostly) makes smart choices and trusts her instincts, and there were no moments where I rolled my eyes in despair over how cliche or egotistical the teenager was. She is honest about her feelings and level headed, and that is very refreshing.
- I also love that she has such a positive parent figure in Nana, because that is very rare in YA. The other characters, for the most part, are also likable and well developed.
- The premiss is really interesting, and the mystery around Atancia's background got me interested throughout the whole story, making me pick it up every chance I got. This was a very easy book to read and there were no major plot errors or unnerving twists. There were wonderful depictions of Australia, but not so much I was diverted from the fantasy.
- There was only one, but it's an important one for me: I could't really FEEL the story, and I think that has to do with how it was told. This book is written in Atancia's POV, as if she is relating a past story. So it made me feel like a friend was telling me something that has taken place in her life - as in: I was interested, but not excited. I didn't feel like I was there, but like I was hearing about it from afar. She explained every feeling, every conversation, and even every uneventful detail that happened between the eventful ones. And that made scenes that should have been thrilling seem lukewarm. It hurt the pace of the story and it prevented me from putting my heart into it. And it all just tied up so very neatly in a bow. Her mother's clues, things with Ben, other things later that I don't want to spoil... It's not bad, but it just didn't make my heart pound.
That being said, I will read the next book if I have the chance. It is a nice, light read, that got me very interested in how it ends.