Richard Lampton never believed in fairy tales, so when a stunning stranger at his uncle’s funeral warns him of an ancient family curse, he pays no heed—until a very real wyrm attempts to destroy him. Now, with the help of a homeless runaway, a fledgling jackdaw, and a key none but he can use, Richard must find the courage to meet his death or his destiny as he plunges headlong Into the Weirding.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is the first book in the Into the Weirding series. I really enjoyed it!
Richard Lampton is an interesting character. I really liked him a lot. He's an ordinary man (or is he?) thrown into an extraordinary adventure. I love watching characters grow in stories and Richard definitely does. When his Uncle Tom dies from a supposed heart attack, Richard finds himself inheriting a deadly curse that has plagued his family for centuries. Being a rational man, he dismisses it as fantasy at first; that is until he's attacked by a monster. As he tries to break the curse, he unwillingly ventures into a dangerous and unknown world.
I love reading YA dark fantasy and when I read the blurb of this book, I was intrigued. I started to read this book and I didn't put it down until I finished it. I devoured it! I found myself hooked from the first page.
There are several interesting characters that are introduced in this tale. However, there are a couple of them that I am still not sure of their motives. The first one is Katherine (Kate) Avery. She is still a mystery to me and I must admit that I didn't like her at first. The second one is Robin, aka the Baron. The author never really tells us much about him, so the reader is left to wonder about his identity. I did, however, like meeting Dawlish. She's a teen runaway who has been taken under the wing (so to speak) by Kate and the Baron and has the ability to talk to birds. Speaking of birds, I love Bobble, the fledgling Jackdaw that is taken in by Richard when he accidentally flies into the window and is knocked out. He has a personality and character all of his own. Crows, ravens, jackdaws, mocking birds and magpies all have an intelligence and curiosity that is sorely underestimated by us humans. This intelligence makes them extremely interesting to me. Then there is Jenny. She has a secret past that, as it was revealed, surprised me.
The story takes the reader on an adventure full of danger, magic and suspense. The explanation for the curse and how John Lampton's actions all those centuries ago had consequences that reverberated down through the years is woven intricately into a tale of personal growth for Richard. It takes an extraordinary man to do the impossible and undo the mess John made, and Richard steps up even though he has no idea what he's getting himself into. However, I couldn't blame John for his actions, as his choices were not exactly easy and were heartbreaking. I would have loved to have more background to Kate and the Baron, so I am hoping that as the series progresses that we get to see more of them and get to know them better. As I reached the end of the story, I had mixed emotions; I was sad that it had come to the end, but happy at the way it concluded. I am now looking forward to reading the next book in the series.
A.J. Campbell has written a fascinating debut novel. I love her fast paced writing style and the flow is wonderful. I would definitely consider reading more of her work in the future.
Although this is a YA dark fantasy, I do not recommend this book to young readers under the age of 15 due to some scenes of violence. I do, however, highly recommend this book to older teens and adults who love YA dark fantasy or urban fantasy. - Lynn Worton
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