Review and Kindle sale: Doon, by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon

December 24, 2013

I recently had the chance to read Doon, by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon. This fiction book was released August 27, 2013 by Blink and is currently on sale for $1.99 for the Kindle.

About this book (from the back cover):

Veronica doesn’t think she’s going crazy. But why can’t anyone else see the mysterious blond boy who keeps popping up wherever she goes? When her best friend, Mackenna, invites her to spend the summer in Scotland, Veronica jumps at the opportunity to leave her complicated life behind for a few months. But the Scottish countryside holds other plans. Not only has the imaginary kilted boy followed her to Alloway, she and Mackenna uncover a strange set of rings and a very unnerving letter from Mackenna’s great aunt—and when the girls test the instructions Aunt Gracie left behind, they find themselves transported to a land that defies explanation. Doon seems like a real-life fairy tale, complete with one prince who has eyes for Mackenna and another who looks suspiciously like the boy from Veronica’s daydreams. But Doon has a dark underbelly as well. The two girls could have everything they’ve longed for… or they could end up breaking an enchantment and find themselves trapped in a world that has become a nightmare.

My Verdict:

I am truly having trouble sorting out my feelings about this book. This is a gorgeous story, with a beautiful dual setting of both modern-day Scotland and the kingdom of Doon, which appears once every hundred years. “Doon” may at first sound a bit sci-fi, but many people will recognize this is as a reference to the musical Brigadoon (“Brig-a-Doon meaning the “bridge to Doon.”) There is so much potential in this story: gorgeous setting, princes of a magical Kingdom fighting the witch that threatens their existence, modern-day friends who possess magical artifacts and who are the only hope for the kingdom…it all felt very “Princess Bride” and I really, really wanted to love it. However, there are some things that I found to be major problems with the book. First, I can’t figure out who the target audience is. It’s billed as a YA novel, but the writing style often felt more Juvenile Fiction to me – which is not a bad thing! However, if I were looking at it from a JF point of view, the “love scenes,” while still being very PG (much like Twilight), used language still too sensual for me to recommend this book to 10-year-olds. There are lots of pop culture references -which are hard to resist,  I know! I obviously used them myself in this review. But in the context of this story they feel a bit jarring, and are so specific that I fear they will make this a book that will not have lasting power but rather will feel “dated” in a few years, which a fairy tale should not be. The dual narrator style was also a bit confusing, as both girls are very similar in their writing style, and I found “correcting” myself sometimes while reading as I realized I had switched the two girls once again. Also, this book was released by a Christian fiction label, but there’s nothing really “Christian” about it other than a “Great Protector” that seems to only exist in the land of Doon; that’s not normally a problem for me, as most fairy tales wouldn’t fall under the guise of  specifically”Christian” fiction, but there are a number of elements that seemed like they weren’t a fit for the Christian fiction audience. I’d like to think I’m not a prude, but there were some scenes that seemed more Harlequin Romance than Christian Fiction. This book is kind of Legally Blonde/Clueless – meets – Twilight – meets a novel with a Fabio cover and it doesn’t quite work for me…but for $2 it may be worth a Kindle read.

If you’d like to check out Doon it is currently on sale for $1.99 for the Kindle version right now, which is 89% off. (Regularly $17.99.) If you prefer a physical copy the hardback version is currently on sale for $12.85. Remember, Amazon’s prices can change at any time.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze® book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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