Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Review and Giveaway: Destruction
David Vandergraff wants to be a good man. He goes to church every Sunday, keeps his lawn trim and green, and loves his wife and kids more than anything. Unfortunately, being a dark wizard isn't a choice. Eleven years ago, David's secret second family went missing. When his two lost children are finally found, he learns they suffered years of unthinkable abuse. Ready to make things right, David brings the kids home even though it could mean losing the wife he can’t imagine living without.
Keeping his life together becomes harder when the new children claim to be dark wizards. David believes they use this fantasy to cope with their trauma. Until, David's wife admits a secret of her own—she is a dark wizard too, as is David, and all of their children. Now, David must parent two hurting children from a dark world he doesn't understand and keep his family from falling apart. All while dealing with the realization that everyone he loves, including himself, may be evil.
As I said above, this book is engaging right from the start. I began the story disliking David but loving the realistic nature of his two "new" children coming to live with and get to know his present wife and half siblings. There was a lot of animosity between the kids and I could truly feel their anger, sorrow, and fear. I could empathize with each and every family member as they tried to cope with their situation. And on top of that, they are dealing with issues of abuse, and for some, the discovery that they are wizards and capable of magic. I couldn't stop reading for the sheer reason that I was so interested in their lives and problems and how things were going to turn out. I didn't need any action or suspense but the addition of a major event toward the end of the story was an added benefit and I was turning the pages anxiously to see what the ending had in store for the characters.
The Fantasy element of the story revolves around the family being dark wizards and the ultimate question becomes, "Does being a dark wizard mean that you can't do good magic?" This question seems to haunt some of the characters as they learn to use their magic. I loved this part of the book, the way the kids learn to use their abilities and how it helped them to finally begin working together. It made me wish that I could find some secret power of my own (I would totally choose shape shifting!).
A few of the characters make some major mistakes so there is definitely a dark element to the story but just when you think the family is about to be completely torn apart, they instead band together to save one of their own, proving in my opinion, that dark wizards can be capable of doing good magic.
Clearly, family is a meaningful theme in the story. Even through the darkest of times, families sometimes need to let go of anger and hatred and come together to defeat the evil in the world. A great message. The magic in the story was fun and I loved discovering what the characters could do along with them. It was fascinating and there were also some minor characters that I hope will turn up again. I am pretty sure that this is the first book in a series so I am really looking forward to the next one so I can see the next step for this blended magical family.
If you enjoy fantasy stories about witches and wizards that parallel with real life issues, you'll love this book and you can enter to win a copy in the giveaway below. Also, check out the Sharon Bayliss website at www.sharonbayliss.com. Happy reading and good luck in the giveaway!
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