My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Be prepared for a dark ride that will hit you with every emotion. The book starts off a little slow as it lays the groundwork for a riveting and horrifying novel. Once you are introduced to the various characters and the world they find themselves in, the book becomes a really quick read. This book takes place in Ireland, but the island is separated from the rest of the world. Thousands of years ago, the Irish people banished the Sidhe (fairies) to another world and now they’re back for their revenge. The people are trapped and their teens are being taken. The Call lasts for 3 minutes and 4 seconds in our world, but they have to survive a day in Sidhe. Most don’t. Those that do usually aren’t the same, either physically, mentally, or both. When they reappear after those 3 minutes, they’re likely dead and quite horribly mutilated. The Sidhe enjoy twisting and bending their prey into new shapes as a form of amusement. Dark.
Sidhe is beautifully, yet horrifically depicted in the book as a place of nightmarish terrors, distorted humanity and deadly Sidhe (fairies). Humans are twisted and shaped into grotesque beings just as depraved as their creators. The landscape is no more forgiving with acid pits and razor folliage. While well represented, I wouldn’t recommend this novel to younger teen readers because its pretty dark. Despite that, you’re drawn into the book and just need to know what’s going to happen.
One comment I have is that the main characters, Anto, Connor, Nessa, Megan, etc don’t read like they’re 14 years old and that’s how old they’re supposed to be. Perhaps it’s living in this strange new word where you know you can be called at any moment and likely lose your life which might age you prematurely, but I kept being surprised when I was reminded of their ages. They definitely act older than they are, perhaps 16-18 years of age.
I really enjoyed this book because it wasn’t like anything I’ve read before. Highly recommended for (older) young adult/teen readers who like fantasy, great world-building and don’t expect everyone to have a happy ending.