Saturday, September 3, 2016

LABYRINTH LOST BY ZORAIDA CÓRDOVA - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova. Thanks to Raincoast Books for sending this book my way for an honest review. As always, all opinions are my own.


I am hesitantly calling this book an urban fantasy, however, as a rule, I don't tend to enjoy UF. I'm more of a new world, high fantasy kinda person, if I'm going to pick up a fantasy, but I really liked this one, despite the fact that it was slightly more urban.

This is the story of Alejandra, or Alex. She is a bruja, or a witch, one of the most powerful of her kind. Except she hates magic, it made her father leave and it killed her aunt/godmother. So when her Deathday comes, essentially a bruja coming of age ceremony, similar to a bar mitzvah, she decides to preform a spell that will get rid of her magic. Except, no one has ever tried that before, and she ends up banishing her family to Los Lagos, the other realm with spirits and strange creatures. And the Devourer, an evil monster who wants to reenter the human realm.

With a fellow brujo, the mysterious Nova, who has secrets of his own, by her side, she journeys through the terrifying world of Los Lagos to save her family.

This story was enchanting and intriguing. The land of Los Lagos was reminiscent of a darker version of Wonderland, complete with a Mad Hatter-esque tea party. I think because most of the story takes place in this make believe world, and not in the 'real' world, I enjoyed it more than most UFs.

I'm not sure how, but I kinda missed the bisexuality aspect of Alex's character. I know she is close with her friend Rishi, but I wasn't aware that it was a love triangle between Alex and Rishi and Nova. It's probably way more noticeable to everyone else, but I think I was just so caught up in the adventure, I just didn't think about the romance that much. There were a could of moments where I guess I could have seen it more, but like I said, I wasn't really looking.

This story was reminiscent of Percy Jackson's adventures as well as obviously Alice in Wonderland. There was a group of teens, who eventually became friends, and went on a quest. There was a bit of mythology as well, the various stories and creatures added in were a nice touch.

Of course as well, there was some hilarious moments and more emotional ones as well. You learn about Nova's past, why he has the strange black markings, etc. and you can't help but feel for him. There's also the guilt Alex feels over her father leaving, she blames herself for it, and has to hold that guilt in because none of her family members know. I also loved the family dynamic, especially the sisterly bond. While Lula, Alex and Rose don't always see eye-to-eye, they love each other no matter what and things wouldn't be the same without the others.

I just found out recently that there are going to be two more books in this series, and apparently each one is going to focus on a different sister. I am interested to see how that will play out, I would have thought they would all focus on Alex and have snippets of her sisters.

I will say that, with any fantasy, there is a lot to remember. Different spells, people, myths, it was a lot to take in and I think there was so much that some of it got lost in the story. And as much as I didn't want this to be an UF, I found myself craving the relative normalcy of everyday life. The elements of Los Lagos sometimes were too much, and I wish things were a bit more broken up, with a flashback of something.

Overall, I would say this was a very unique book, and I look forward to the next ones.