When I began reading Releasing Her Powers Within: Fae Shifters I by Madilynn Dale I was fully ready to find a teenage protagonist coming of age, awareness, and powers. I really love that this book has more teeth than that. The protagonist, Liz, is in her twenties instead of a teenager, but that leads to a great deal of maturity and a more complete adult. For example, more adult versus coming-of-age themes are included with Liz considering a career change and clearing out her mother’s property following her death. However, Liz is still young, hence the giggles and blushes over Cam, the cute young man.
I think that dialog is the trickiest thing to get right in writing. Most of the time the dialog is smooth in this book, and the reader doesn’t even notice it. There are times though where it seems really awkward and forced, but not in a way that makes sense to the scene (i.e. the characters are not uncomfortable). This is the only downfall I have to the entire book. I love the character development, the plotline, the action, the foreshadowing, the pace,… If all the dialog were rough I might have a large problem with the story, but it only happens a handful of times.
Liz is a very interesting character. Cam we don’t get to see quite as in depth. Because the point of view shifts in the first person between Cam and Liz we can get a better understanding of them both through their thoughts. However, more of the book is written in Liz’s POV, so the reader is able to relate to her better.
The book builds tension all the way through, but about the time of the panther fight in the woods and the mysterious note from “J”, the action is high! The story is racing along at this point, very fluidly, and the reader hates to veer off and pause to do anything but finish reading.The book ends in a natural pause, but the reader is left hanging wanting to know more about these dual roles that Liz now has.
I just recommended this book in a book group I am in because it’s not the typical teenage protagonist. I really like that the story focuses on adults who have started their careers, but are still finding their place in the world.