The doorstep was black, shiny as glass.
Through the layers of dead leaves and yuck, some words shone through.
Words, carved on the doorstep!
Scraping the leaves away, I found some symbols, and in English:
WHERE __SILON DWELLS.
Inside an abandoned cottage on the remote island of Lume, Jess encounters an eerie ghost-like presence. She also finds three locked boxes and, as she earns the right to unlock each, the contents send her mind spinning. Gradually, Jess unravels the clues, guided by the mysterious Epsilon.
But is he a guide from the bright side or the dark?
I started reading this book not knowing if I would enjoy it, it being written from the perspective of a teenage girl. Within a matter of a half a dozen pages I had forgotten that fact and was being carried along by the story.
The start of the story is set in a web chatroom with a couple of friends chatting. This scenario is mixed well with Jess' 'diary' entries of her time so far on the remote island of Lume with her parents (sometimes called the Enemy) and her increasingly bizzare relationship with the enigmatic, often frustrating, Epsilon. The use of codes and riddles is cool. Some of them are complex to look at, but when explained in the story made sense in context.
The hand-drawn sketches and maps are another way the author has used to tie in the past and present visions of the characters. There are descriptions of the drawings but being able to see what the author had in her mind as she was writing is a good thing for those of us who are visual people. The illustrator has captured the message and conveys it very well.
Overall, a great read I have thoroughly enjoyed. I think it may be one of the few books I will look forward to reading again. With the price being under $20 it would be a good gift for someone who likes to read about mysteries and solve the occasional riddle.
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William Shakespeare (1564 - 1616), As You Like It