I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
The Butterfly Crest by Eva Vanrell
Release date: November 17th, 2014
Publisher: The Ojime Group
Genres: Fantasy, New Adult
An ancient war. A long-told prophecy. A cursed Inheritance. If you were destined to die, how would you choose to live?
Between the shadows of the human world, a war as old as time is being fought. Ageless pantheons scheme to obtain or keep control, provoked by the weight of human belief which has altered the realm of the divine.
An ancient prophecy speaks of a human woman who will alter the course of this divine war, a descendant of a Great House mired in misfortune and blood, whose history was shaped by the cruelty of the gods.
On a day as unremarkable as any other, Elena Vicens, a young woman living a seemingly ordinary life, receives a letter about a deposit box belonging to her mother, nineteen years after her mother’s death. When this letter sends her on a journey halfway across the world from New Orleans to Japan, Elena unknowingly comes into possession of a cursed inheritance. She is suddenly thrust into a world of myths and legends, where the intangible and the strange are the fabric of everyday life, and deathless gods vie for victory at any cost.
As allies converge to help Elena fulfill the prophecy, one of whom is struggling with his own inheritance, Elena must choose for herself the measure of her own destiny.
The Butterfly Crest by Eva Vanrell is the first book in the The Protogenoi Series. It’s a mixture of the modern day and Roman, Greek and Japanese mythology. That’s what caught my attention! Japanese mythology?! It sounded different and the plot intrigued me. However, while it sounded promising, the book didn’t live up to my initial excitement.
The story focuses on Elena Vicens, a young woman who travels to Japan when a bank in Kyoto notifies her that her long deceased mother had left her a safety deposit box. Once the contents are in her possession, Elena is thrust into a war between different mythological beings.
My main issue with the book was that it contained too much detail. Now don’t get me wrong, detail is a good thing, but in moderation. The settings, clothing and food were fully described. I could clearly picture the restaurant or the food the characters were enjoying, but very early on it became too much. It made the book very difficult to read. There were a few times when I wanted to give up on it, but the plot and characters kept me going. The overuse of description slowed down the book. Usually a fantasy book starts slow – the world and characters need to be introduced and this can mean a lot of explanations, etc. The pace in this novel never changed. It took me much longer to get through than I anticipated.
There was also some inconsistency when it came to the characters. Not all of the dialogue matched the personality the author constructed for them. I was often thinking did I read that right? Who said that? Elena was also a character that I just couldn’t like. She began the book as cold and reserved and really didn’t change much.
The book had a lot going for it – an original plot, mythology, amazing locations – but just didn’t really connect for me. It did have its moments, which is why I have given it a 3 out of 5, but the author could have done much more with it. Much editing could have also be used to cut down on the overuse of description.
Have you read The Butterfly Crest? Will you read the second book which will be released later this year?