|Danio's Prelude by Elizabeth Kirke|
(More Than Magic #0.5)
November 14, 2013
Genre: Adult Paranormal
Contains: Violence, strong language, sex (m/m)
Source: Won from author for Honest review
Hear Danio's story, told by the people who know him best. The ones who knew him when all of his laughter was genuine. The ones who were there through the worst that life could throw at him. And the ones who stayed by his side while he picked up the pieces.My Review:
An adult, short story collection, based on the Young Adult series, More than Magic.
Contains strong language, violence, and sex.
I loved the first two books of this More Than Magic series - Semester Aboard and Snow Bound. Elizabeth Kirke does a tremendous job creating characters you love and a magical world full of so many layers and so much depth, you want to live there. If you haven't read those two books, or at least the first one, than I highly recommend you check them out. Danio's Prelude may be considered a prequel to those other books, but it is really intended to be read afterwards. First, you need to meet Danio in Semester Aboard and Snow Bound, take an instant liking to him, feel the mystery of his past and who he is, and then discover all the depths of Danio in Danio's Prelude. Note: The first two books are really written as Young Adult/New Adult, but Danio's Prelude is most definitely written as an Adult book.
In Danio's Prelude, we are given stories from individuals from Danio's life, ranging from his childhood at age 11 to our introduction to him in Semester Aboard at age 81. But this book is not in chronological order. No, it is a mixed up file of puzzled goodness, bouncing around in time, giving us bits and pieces of Danio's life, culminating in a fiery conclusion in the last chapter, finally giving up the completed picture of Danio. Additionally, these 12 chapter, titled "tracks," are each narrated by a different person from Danio's life. So while the tracks themselves are numbered chronologically, they are ordered very specifically in the book, starting with Track 12. I thought using both the different narrators and the interweaving of time elements was brilliant. I don't think the journey to discovering Danio would have been quite so impacting or entertaining had it been written chronologically or all been narrated by Danio himself. I give Elizabeth major props for this!
As for what we discover about Danio, I will not give away spoilers, but I will say that I laughed, cried, smiled, sighed, ached, fumed, and blushed at various points throughout the book. I felt the complete gamut of emotions and feels. A good portion of Danio's personality and experience is out there for us to read. He is a thoroughly complex character with a boatload of baggage and trauma from his life, but in spite of all he's been through, he is one of the most endearing people to read about. His humor, kindness, and sincerity always shine through. Elizabeth has created such a wonderful character here, and reading Danio's Prelude was truly a treat. Plus, we get to discover and uncover his secrets (and some other people's secrets as well). And we get to know more about some other characters as well. I'm already planning to re-read the entire series again soon to see all the hints I missed during my first read. Plus, I just love hanging out with these characters.
Additionally, we get insight into Danio and Char's relationship, how they met, etc. To be honest, I'm not a reader of m/m romantic scenes. And as the content warning states, there is some sex in this book, and if you are remotely familiar with Danio, then you know where his preferences lie. So if you like those scenes, then you will love them in this book. If you're like me, I'll say that I had no problem skimming those scenes, gaining the tidbits and insights I wanted, but not lingering on the details that I didn't. Though even with the skimming, I could definitely feel the "heat" coming off of the pages. (Yes, that was a fire elemental pun. I couldn't help myself.)
So overall, I don't know if there are other books out there set up in this fashion, but I haven't read them, so for me this book was genius in its arrangement, narration, insight, and all-around entertainment. Danio's Prelude is definitely for fans of the MTM series. And if you are not familiar with this series, than I highly recommend you check it out.
If she isn't writing...well, let's be honest; if she isn't writing she's probably on Facebook thinking that she should start writing. But, if she isn't writing or on Facebook, she's probably doing something involving books, baking, gardening, or yarn. In an ideal world, she'd be reading and knitting while something from the garden is in the oven. Then again, in an ideal world, she'd have a flock of ducks and a couple of goats.
Like most slightly-nosy, avid readers, Elizabeth can't resist trying to catch a peek at books she sees people reading when out in public to see if she can figure out what it is. While doing just that one day, she realized that it would probably be the coolest-thing-ever if she caught a complete stranger reading one of her books. That's her new dream.
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