by Pembroke Sinclair
Published on June 4, 2016 by Pembroke Sinclair
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy
It has been 500 years since Aelana has been home, and a lot has changed in that time--including her. As a half-dragon, half-human hybrid, she has been traveling the universe destroying worlds. Both anxious and excited to return, she wonders what she will find. Her memories of home are filled with pain and loss, especially for her first and only love. She knows he won't be there, but will his memory? Will her anguish remain?
What waits for Aelana on her home world? Find out in this exciting urban fantasy novel by Pembroke Sinclair.
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I really tried with this one. For two weeks I attempted to read this book, blaming my mood or my busy schedule or stress or, hell, the weather. But when it came down to it, this book just wasn’t working for me. I wanted to like it. Trust me, there are dragons involved. If you’ve ever glanced at my About page you’ll know that dragons = MUST READ.
As this book has received several raving reviews prior to my own, I want to start off with my initial impression. The synopsis itself intrigued me and when it started, while I wasn’t hooked and really didn’t know what was going on (also space-traveling dragons?) I was prepared to get into the meat of the story. Generally something happens to the protagonist that forces him or her to make a decision, face down an evil, etc. That tension drives the story forward and entices the reader to invest in the main character, but I never got that with Aelana. The big moment at the beginning comes when she returns to her home planet after 500 “cycles” living among dragons on another one. The whole “space” addition aside, she’s being thrown into a world once her own but long evolved and…nothing happens.
Aelana is in her world that she was so nervous about returning to (plus she’s not exactly all human anymore) and suddenly she knows what all the modern technology is (because I’m sure dragons had taxis…). She just goes to a castle, meets her former soulmate re-incarnated — or at least that seemed to be the direction that particular subplot was headed — and goes to sleep in a cave.
We’re nearing 10% right now and I still really don’t know what the plot of this book is. The synopsis tells me next to nothing (though after some digging I found an older version of this title with a different description that added a bit more, but can’t judge it off that one as I don’t know if anything’s changed between that version and the one I read). I know that 10% might not seem like a far way into a book but I’ve learned over the years that if I’m not feeling a book by then, I likely won’t enjoy it through to the end.
The thing about Wucaii is that the writing style is good. Nothing noteworthy but good. I just wasn’t feeling the character come through nor any sense of urgency, conflict, something that would drive the character forward. In that 10% I couldn’t tell you anything about Aelana other than she’s a half-dragon, half human girl. What’s her motivation? What is she moving toward?
I pushed a bit farther and was treated to a flashback to her time on her home planet (which is never explicitly stated as Earth so far, so won’t make assumptions on that front). Instead of seeing her in this “new” world of hers, I’m getting her past. And if I’m already not hooked, throwing me back in time won’t make that any better.
As I mentioned, it appears that many others did enjoy this novel and I wouldn’t suggest passing it by if the synopsis intrigues you. But for me, Wucaii just wasn’t working, unfortunately.