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Review: Tangled Ashes

by Matthew on November 5th, 2012
Tangled Ashes

I typically read Science Fiction and Fantasy novels, and occasionally Thrillers and Mysteries, so Tangled Ashes, being a Drama and Historical Fiction genre, was quite a change of pace. The premise sounded interesting, which is why I decided to give it a shot. While Michèle Phoenix has a great writing style that makes reading this novel a breeze, the book suffers from having virtually no plot while meandering through the castle’s renovation for the majority of the novel as Becker and Jade provide enough drama to make things a little interesting.

Though Tangled Ashes‘ primary focus is Becker battling his demons and perhaps finding some kind of redemption, the more intriguing part is the supporting character Jojo, who provides the story’s aimless wandering some genuine interest, though that element is not without its own problems. The book’s sole mystery element had some quirky elements that boil down to learn it now, forget it later. Becker has a drinking problem and a foul temper, which is seen often throughout the novel, even after going through a few major ordeals that one would think perhaps he would have learned something. When it is all said and done, Becker leaves almost unchanged, practically blowing off whatever relationships he may have developed, producing an ending that felt uninspiring and incomplete.

Again, Tangled Ashes is well written and Phoenix’s prose makes it easy on the reader to keep reading, even if the subject matter is not particularly engagnig. There is no plot here and often I found myself wondering what this book was building towards, which ultimately was nowhere. It is character driven, which is probably its strongest asset, but not strong enough for one to really care about said characters. There is much drama between the characters, nearly all of it due to Becker’s feisty attitude, but not so much drama or tension in circumstances, with the exception of two brief parts late in the story.  The environment’s were well described and vivid, though perhaps under utilized. Unfortunately I finished Tangled Ashes with a mixed to slightly negative impression. It was book not written for me, but really, I do not regret giving it a chance. I have read far worse books that were twice as long and twice as bad.

I received this book free of charge from Handlebar Marketing in exchange for my honest review.

If you found my review helpful, feel free to express as much on my Amazon review. Thanks!

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