Woven - A Tale Worth Unraveling?

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Woven Book Michael Jensen David Powers King Magic

The underlying theme of the book, Woven, is about passion. Passion to become your own person, passion to fall in love, and passion to achieve your goals. Even though the setting for the book is unconventional, the drive behind the book is undeniable. With the book, my editor received a note emphasizing the author's own struggle and passion to create this mystical story. It, in and of itself, is a woven journey on the road of life to get this book published and ends up being a soul-strengthening tale of overcoming odds. Just one day before the book was set to be released, it was pulled because of the author's personal life choices. Despite this defeat, the author faced down these injustices, garnered international attention, and managed to draw the interest of the biggest publishers in the US. Frankly, it’s not surprising an author who faces down real life villainy wrote such an elegant tale of triumph.

The book starts fairly slowly. To be honest, my initial thoughts were simply, ‘why can’t authors choose NORMAL names for their characters?’ This seems to be an ongoing trend in fantasy books. With main characters named Nels and Tyra, I had to roll my eyes and wonder, is Nels short for something? Nelson? Norman Evan Lionel Shaw? In lieu of my silliness, I researched the name and found it actually is a Celtic name meaning Chief and people who bear this name generally desire to travel, have adventures, and set their own rules and live an untraditional life. This fits perfectly to the character and makes complete sense. So, fine, I would accept the unconventional naming in this case!

Our main character, who has been killed under mysterious circumstances, is attempting to unravel what happened and is led on a journey into the unknown world of magic. With the groundwork laid and about seventy pages in, the book picks up tremendously. The action is basically non-stop and, if you’ll excuse the pun, the story is an intricately woven tale of betrayal, heroics, and intrigue. All is not as it appears at any given point. By the end of the book, the reader is almost too paranoid to trust anybody. Jensen does a wonderful job of creating doubt and confusion in the context of the story.

Normally, reading any book, I will automatically draw connections to other tales and look for inspiration or stereotypical ruts. Initially, when the story starts with three kids coming of age and armed with the knowledge that magic would be thrown into the mix, I likened it to Harry Potter. Abruptly, when Nels is killed, the story takes a swift right turn and the reader is thrown into a unique situation. Dynamics change and this magic world slowly comes to light. It's quite well written and thoroughly captivating.

Overall, Woven is a good book worth the read. Young adults should enjoy the magical journey. The magic in this story is interwoven with the concept of fabrication and sewing. As a person who regularly works with fabric, I understood a lot of the "magical" terms better than most. Teenagers may initially get lost with the terms used, but there's no reason they shouldn't pick it up fairly fast. The fast pace should keep them enthralled and the ending should have them wanted for more!

TL; DR: A strong book with a good undertone. Give your teenagers a push to read it, they'll get pulled into the web!

3.5 / 5.0