Original Books

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

Beyond the Reflection's Edge by Bryan Davis

While I ignored the Dragons in Our Midst and Oracles of Fire series by this author, the Echoes from the Edge series caught my eye in a good way.
Nathan Shepard is a teenager who has been surrounded by music all of his life. His mother is a famous violinist, and he is trying to follow in her footsteps. His father is an investigator.
But then, one night after a concert, both of his parents are murdered by a strange scientist whom his father was investigating. All that's found on his father's body are the notes for the case and a strange mirror.
Nathan goes to stay with one of his father's friends as he tries to unravel the clues to his parents' deaths. Along with the help of Kelly, his new girlfriend, they discover something very dangerous and life threatening.
Three dimensions are being propelled toward each other because of holes in the dimensions. These holes are created by people traveling between the dimensions. If there are too many holes, than the whole universe will collapse into itself and be forced into a state called Interfinity.
Earth Blue is our world, and Earth Red and Earth Yellow are both behind in time. All three dimensions are virtually identical in their pasts, presents, and futures except for the staggered time lines. But the holes are making it so that things in Earth Red and Earth Yellow are happening differently than it did on Earth Blue.
The whole idea behind this book sounds creative, so the plot content is what keeps it from being Elite.
First of all, Nathan is a completely perfect character. The teen "everyone wants to be." The rest of the characters are also lacking for a personality.
Second of all, the villain is absurd and stereotypical. There's nothing that can make me believe it is real or plausible. It's just another one of those alternate world villains.
Third of all, this book is hardly spent working on the central task: mending the holes in the dimensions. it's mostly spent on street chases, emotional scenes, information dumps about Interfinity, and scenes showing how perfect Nathan is.
Fourth of all, the end of this book does not make me want to finish the series. But I will do so just so I can finish reviewing it. The end shows nothing of them trying to solve the problem; it consists of the characters sitting in a hospital room crying.
Fifth of all, the title makes no sense save for the sentence Bryan stuck at the end containing the title just to make it work.
I wish I could make this book Elite, but I really cannot because I can't do it in good faith. Perhaps the rest of series will utilize this original idea correctly.
2 stars

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