Sunday, May 20, 2012

Review: Feyland: The Dark Realm

Feyland: The Dark Realm
Book 1 in the Feyland Trilogy

Feyland is the most immersive computer game ever designed, and Jennet Carter is the first to play the prototype. But she doesn’t suspect the virtual world is close enough to touch — or that she’ll be battling for her life against the Dark Queen of the faeries.

Tam Linn is the perfect hero — in-game. Too bad the rest of his life is seriously flawed. The last thing he needs is rich-girl Jennet prying into his secrets, insisting he’s the only one who can help her.

Together, Jennet and Tam enter the Dark Realm of Feyland, only to discover that the entire human world is in danger. Pushed to the limit of their abilities, they must defeat the Dark Queen… before it’s too late.

The Cover: I am a sucker for beautiful book covers. I know, "Never judge a book by its cover," but I am easily lured by pretty things. This cover is beautiful and made me want to open the book and find out who the picture was depicting. Also note that this cover is a revamp of the first, which still can be seen on Goodreads if you are interested.

My Thoughts: I love the idea of playing a game that is able to affect real life. I have always been interested in the idea of Virtual Reality games or the idea of being sucked into a game. It reminded me of one of my favorite movies from the 90's - Arcade.

In Feyland: The Dark Realm, playing the game is called Simming. However, Feyland isn't just a game; it is the 'inbetween' place between reality and the faerie world. The basic plot of the book is that Jennet and Tam must venture into the game and battle through various levels and villans to save Jennet's mortal essence that was taken by the Dark Queen when she lost the game initially.

Jennet, the protagonist, is the daughter of a VirtuMax employee; the company that created Feyland. She lives in The View, a exclusive community for VirtuMax employees. However, she attends a regular high school instead of a prep school, which she did purposefully to find someone to help her. As a former mean girl inside school and a loner at home, she was used to doing what she wanted. But when she lost her essence to the Dark Queen, Jennet became vulnerable and had to learn to rely on others for help.

Enter Tam - the reluctant hero. Where Jennet was rich, he was poor. Tam lived in the Exe - a destitute, dangerous part of the city. Tam's homelife is also rough. He has to take care of his little brother because his mother has issues and is never home. He is a really good gamer and even won a simming competition and recieved a game console as a prize. But when his little brother dismantles the system, he has nowhere to go to play. When Jennet approaches him, I think he was more interested in the challenge of winning a new game than actually helping Jennet. Especially because it took him getting hurt and then some for him to really believe her.

The relationship between Tam and Jennet is slow romantically, which I find refreshing. They didn't fall in love at first sight. They became friends and learned to trust and care for each other naturally.

What made this book really special is that I felt it when Tam and Jennet were in the game, I was there too. Then, when they stopped gaming and were thrust back into reality, it was like a splash of cold water. Yes, they could be harmed in the game and it could be permanent, but it paled in comparison to what kind of damage their real lives, especially Tam's could inflict. Both characters grow and learn about love, friendship, and sacrifice and what it really means to live.

Anthea Sharp does an amazing job of describing the scenery and the action. Her knowledge of Faerie lore was extensive and her ability to put you in the game was superb. I had chills, my adrenaline was pumping, and I could not put this book down. Fantastic for fans of the science fiction/fantasy genre. Can't wait to read the next book in the trilogy!

Favorite Quote: "Games weren't fun if you couldn't turn them off."

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
For those who have read The Forbidden Game series by L.J. Smith will love this book.
*I purchased this book. I was not given anything in exchange for this review.

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1 comment:

  1. This sounds seriously awesome!! Especially as a video game player myself, I always thought it'd always be a neat idea to have the games transcend into life. The cover is gorgeous too! I'll definitely have to check this one out.


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