Wish. Love. Desire. Live.Sixteen-year-old Noli Braddock's hoyden ways land her in an abusive reform school far from home. On mid-summer's eve she wishes to be anyplace but that dreadful school. A mysterious man from the Realm of Faerie rescues her and brings her to the Otherworld, only to reveal that she must be sacrificed, otherwise, the entire Otherworld civilization will perish.
Release Date: August 8, 2012
Published By: Flux
Published By: Flux
Review Copy: Paperback, 408 pages
Though the cover gives an overall dominant feel of steampunk we have been told time and time again not to judge a book by its cover. Innocent Darkness is both steampunk and fantasy and it was rather different how the author went about weaving both of these things into one story but it worked. The steam punk was really more a part of the start of the novel and later came the fantasy of the Fae and theOtherworld. This did not disappoint me though as the writing is so beautiful and gives you such a clear picture of the worlds you visit.
The Otherworld was significantly more vivid for me in this one than the alter world of 1901. Admittedly 1901 with the hint of steampunk was really beautifully done but there wasn't really much of it. When it comes down to it though I believe that it was Lazear's writing that really brought it all to life. Where the gadgets were added was perfect, not overdone which is a fine line to walk sometimes. Her writing is quite simply captivating. It's a beautiful combination of great pacing and a simplicity that allows you to absorb as you read it.
Noli (Magnolia) has to be one of my top ten favourite strong females leads now. Despite living and growing up in 1901 where there is little freedom and options for girls and woman she wants to make something of herself. She tinkers and is passionate about things that aren't quite "lady like." I admired the fact that she was true to herself but did feel shame in the sense that she was letting her mother down. Her most admirable trait was her intelligence, she isn't the silly girl that sits back and waits to be rescued. Though Noli does have a lot of growing to do still, she did show growth throughout this book.
There is two boy but readers don't panic a triangle isn't present. Both guys do want Noli's attention but I don't personally believe there was ever any question. Noli's best friend V (Steven) has many secrets and she has no idea just how big they are. These two don't start off as anything more than friends but they do both have hidden feelings. Later on you meet Kevighn and though he is incredibly good looking and smooth the attraction just isn't there. Well I guess there are moments but they are stolen moments and not true deep down affection. Even with two guys I never once felt that Noli was flaking out and making a big deal out of nothing.
Overall Innocent Darkness was a wonderfully spun tale. Though you will remain pulled into the story, there is nothing that is horribly shocking at the end, no big mystery. This works well for this book and I wouldn't have asked for anything more. Lazear created something that people that are fans of the steampunk genre or fantasy genre can ease into something different. I do recommend this read and especially if you are looking to get into steampunk and don't want to jump into anything too heavy in it to start.
Noli knew it must have been a blow to her mother's pride for them to blame everything on her lack of parenting. Some dutiful daughter she turned out to be.
The previous night's events crashed down on her. She was at Kevighn Silver's. The house of a stranger. It definitely hadn't been a dream. The good thing was, she was no longer at Findlay. the bad thing was she wasn't home.
How could horses flying through the air without wings make hoofbeats? But this world didn't have the same constraints as her own.