BOOK REVIEW – Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

BOOK REVIEW – Magonia by Maria Dahvana HeadleyMagonia by Maria Dahvana Headley
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Synopsis:

Aza Ray is drowning in thin air.

Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live.

So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn't think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name.

Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia.

Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—and as she navigates her new life, she discovers that war is coming. Magonia and Earth are on the cusp of a reckoning. And in Aza’s hands lies the fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?

“Did he just say stormsharks? My inner nerd is elated. Can anything I will ever hear from now until the end of time sound cooler than stormsharks?”

FUCK YEAH. That’s exactly what I was wondering, and damn, how awesome is that, tell me? Let’s clear the air right away : Magonia is unlike anything I read before. Ever.

This being said, I genuinely think that everything you need to know about the plot can be found in the blurb, and I would hate to spoil your read with too many details. That’s why a list review it is.

✔ Don’t get fooled by the blurb : Aza is a sassy, snarky and … yes, sometimes infuriating heroine who won me from page one despite the know-it-all vibes she spreads at some point. Actually, she says it herself :

“But I ask you, wouldn’t it be worse if I were perfect? My imperfections make me less mournable.”

This is Aza for you. An impertinent and unapologetic brat who always knew that she would die young, because strange-disease-named-by-her-own-name. Perhaps she’ll annoy you at first, but damn, I loved her.

Moreover, it’s important to point that her character isn’t set in stone. Indeed character development people! I know, I’m impressed too : we get to follow her evolution throughout the story and yes, that’s as awesome as it seems.

✔ Here comes my little gem : Jason. {{{ insert fangirling }}} What can I say, I am a sucker for different male-leads and Jason was right up my alley : a little OCD (the guy recites PI to calm himself, duh), incredibly clever, loyal, and let’s say, completely adorable. The relationship he shares with Aza is heartwarming and above that, sounds so right, so sweet and yet never dull. Such a sweetheart, I’m telling you. He’s mine.

“I look at that for a minute, trying to get myself together. I’m a fucking mess of rattling pi and things I never said.”

✔ Not to mention a bunch of amazing secondary characters who all have unique voices. And a love triangle which ISN’T really a love triangle, thanks god.

✔ A world-building unlike anything I read before, filled with UFO rumors and ancient mythology and full of creatures who often made me stare at my book wide-eyed and search a ridiculous amount of info on the internet.

✔ An original plot served by a beautiful and evocative writing. Indeed with the exception of a few pages around the middle, I felt captivated during the whole book, eager to learn more about this world and his wonderful set of characters.

“Writing that gets rewritten as the earth moves. If you look at the sky that way, it’s this massive shifting poem, or maybe a letter, first written by one author, and then, when the earth moves, annotated by another. So I stare and stare until, one day, I can read it.”

So. Many. Feels, guys. Truth be told, the ability to make me care determines grandly my enjoyment of a story, and in my opinion it was magisterially executed here : I hoped, I cried, I laughed, I yelled, I loved.

At this point, you must wonder why I’m not giving it 5 stars. Actually, that’s pretty simple : there are several things which aren’t explained or which seem just too … easy for me to buy (Aza’s special status and powers for example). Now, it never prevented me from enjoying my read, that’s why I couldn’t give it less than 4 stars.

{{{ frantically waiting for a sequel }}}

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2 Comments

  1. Awesome review! You had me at Stormsharks! I also love characters who are less than perfect. It makes them much more realistic.

    • Anna

      May 3, 2015 at 6:39 am

      Thank you Kim! I hope you’ll enjoy your read 🙂 And Jason <3 OMG. So adorable and heartbreaking <3

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