I was offered a free copy of this book, and I snapped it up based on the über cool cover. I was initially entranced by the idea that red headed women have special powers in this book. I was sure I was going to love it, being a red head myself. Unfortunately, the scene on the cover never occurs in the book, and the story thread about red heads with powers vs. non-red heads who might also have powers (even though they aren’t supposed to) is never really developed.
By length of book (400+ pages) and number of characters, one would expect that this is a young adult book. I would suggest, however, that it’s actually a really long middle grade book with a confusing number of characters. The title character acts younger than the stated 16 years of age. She is, as other reviewers have stated, a weak, shallow character. I personally prefer heroines that are strong despite their flaws, like the Alessa that is pictured on the cover seems to be.
My favorite characters in the book are “the vultures,” Alessa’s ladies-in-waiting, a trio that brings some much needed comic relief to the early portion of the book. My least favorite characters are all the people introduced in the last third of the book. I could not keep track of them, and this made it difficult to keep track of what is happening with the plot.
There is a really great plot idea here – mutation that turns humans into amphibians – that indicates a creative mind behind the writing. Albino is clearly an author to watch. I hope that in future books the characters will be better developed and the ending will not feel so complicated with a rash of new characters. -my Amazon review for Princess Alessa and The Frog War by A.L. Albion
I suspect that this is the opening book in a series, at least I hope so. There are a number of promising plot threads in addition to the non-red heads with powers that were started and then dropped. I’m a bit paranoid about this in my own book, so I’m curious. How do you keep track of of plot threads as you write to make sure that you don’t drop any?