I just finished reading THE CARVER by JACOB DEVLIN. It was extra special because I got to meet Jacob in person!
This is Jacob.
He’s such a great guy. We had so much fun hanging out at UTOPIA—the writers’ event/conference in Tennessee.
<=== We got to ride the employee elevator and get the unofficial tour of the kitchens and offices at the hotel where the conference was held. Don’t ask . . .
**Side note: He’s the one who got me hooked on FUNKO POPS!
This read was extra special because I got to be present when Jacob first saw it in print–first got to hold it! So exciting to see the “inside” of published-author world. And, if that wasn’t enough for this first-time author, The Carver SOLD OUT at the conference!
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So, my review . . . I gave THE CARVER 4 Stars. The storyline follows an epic ROAD TRIP with Enzo (the son of Pinocchio), Pietro (grown-up Peter Pan), and Rosana (the daughter of THE Alice—yes, the one who went to Wonderland) as they try to figure out what’s happening to their loved ones–who keep disappearing!
Plot: Here is the short version by way of a quote by HUA MULAN herself (p.191):
“Then let me give you the short version. Hansel is under the control of a dark queen who should have disappeared years ago. She’s trying to come back and using Hansel’s body as a vessel. But to come back in her true form, she needs to gather seven pure souls in the Cavern of Ombre . . . ”
Mood: The Carver was fun all around. There were some darker moments, but overall, I was sucked into both the fairy tale world, and our world–it was amusing experiencing our world through the eyes of the fairy tale characters that found themselves here. (I REALLY want to try Macaroni and Cheese on a stick . . . Didn’t know that existed!!)
Pace: Once I got the hang of the back and forth between the OLD WORLD PRESENT, NEW WORLD PRESENT, and OLD WORLD PAST, it was a fast read.
Characters: Jacob’s twist on the characters was reminiscent of Once Upon a Time, yet he did a wonderful job breathing freshness into the characters and adding lots of twists to the fairy tale world that we all “know.” The characters were unique, and you never knew which beloved (and not so beloved) fairy tale character would show up next.
I loved Jacob’s little snippet about The Boy Who Cried Wolf.
And I’m still chuckling about: Hook. James Hook. HA!
“You cannot win a fight without a pirate, and I’m the best there is.” -Hook p.252
Writing: Grammatically, this book was well-written.
Cons for me personally: At times the dialogue seemed a bit juvenile and forced. And the !’s were a bit over-used. And at times I was totally confused with where I was–which story line–and had to flip back to remind myself.
Level of Violence: There were several moments of evilness-in-action (loved the twists of the good being forced to do evil, but for great reasons…so intriguing!) and some great fight scenes.
My favorite fight scene being when Pietro and Enzo were forced into a joust at a Renaissance Fair! Pietro (Peter Pan) is such a sore loser!
Other Thoughts: I think this sums up the takeaway of this story:
“ . . . I think it was a big shock when they got to the big twists, but, in the end, you have to realize that these fairy tales were also influenced very heavily by reality, and unfortunately reality sometimes includes tragedy. Even for the heroes.” -Heather McClavender AKA Violet p.231
Would I recommend this?: If you can’t get enough of fairy tales, this book is for you! Well, even if you are “eh” about fairy tales, this book is a great read! And, I must say, I think this book will be even better the second read through—now that I know what happens, and I can follow the back and forth of the story line.
The Carver ends with a TO BE CONTINUED . . .
BOOK 2 will be out next year, I will definitely be getting a copy so I can find out what happens to all the characters as they try to save their world and ours from the Ivory Queen—Avoria!
Grab your copy here . . .
. . . And check out BLAZE PUBLISHING for other AMAZING novels!!