LABYRINTH LOSTAuthor: Zoraida Córdova
Series: Brooklyn Brujas #1
Source: eARC via Publisher
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Publication Date: September 6, 2016
Rating: 2/5 stars
Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.
Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation...and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can't trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.
The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland...
Purchase:This one started off so strong -- for the first 60% I was LOVING it. It was easily on it's way to being a 4* novel but then at 60% it has a Tea Party scene which is very reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland and while that's fine, it caused me to think about them rather than stay in the story of LABYRINTH LOST and from there I kind of mentally checked out of the novel. As well, the ending was very underwhelming and I found I couldn't really connect with the characters.
I didn't like Alex at all. I thought she made some stupid choices and while I liked that she saw her magic as a burden, I didn't like that she didn't talk it through with her mom or family before deciding to get rid of it. I didn't care about her or having to find her family and what not. I just didn't care. And the other characters were meh as well. If I had to choose a favourite, I would probably say Lula and that is a stretch.
I thought that this one so badly wanted to have sequels that it left things very vague at the end, especially with her aunt and Nova. I am okay with this having a complete narrative in this novel, but I didn't care enough about the characters to want a sequel so it just felt as thought there was a stretch to have unanswered questions and a semi-cliffhanger. But honestly, I wasn't here for it.
And as much as I'm like "yay healthy bisexuality!" I didn't see or feel it. If I hadn't read a review that mentioned it prior to reading this novel, I would have been SHOCKED at the end with Alex and Rishi. Am I 100% into the fact that there was a love triangle with a boy and a girl and she chose the girl? Yes. Do I think it really made sense in the context of the story and the interactions we saw? Not really. I do agree that she wouldn't have been able to trust or love Nova after what he did, but I didn't understand where her attraction to Rishi came from.
Also the conflicts that were met along the way were so EASILY solved. Alex had basically no trouble getting from point A to B in this mystical world and every "enemy" she met ended up turning into a friend which is such an eye roll from me. This was supposed to be a place were people are banished for doing wrong, so why was everyone so... nice? It didn't make sense to me at all.
But the magic and cantos were REALLY cool. I liked seeing how magic played a huge role in Alex's life and how her family was structured. I liked seeing how to do the magic and the snippets from the Book of Cantos was probably the best part. I thought the world building was well done since it was present day and had to be meshed in with our current world. And Los Lagos was so well described that I could imagine myself there.
I would probably check this one out from the library before purchasing a copy. I am going to continue with the series (well, at least the next one) to see where the story goes, but mostly because I like the magic rather than the characters. I just wanted so much more from this one than what we got.