Review: A Dark Realm by Anthea Sharp

Review: A Dark Realm by Anthea SharpA Dark Realm by Anthea Sharp
Series: Feyland #1

Published by Createspace on April 12th 2012
Genres: Fairy Tale, Fantasy, Romance, YA
Pages: 320
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What if a high-tech computer game was a gateway to the dangerous Realm of Faerie?

When a game…

Feyland is the most immersive computer game ever designed, and Jennet Carter is the first to play the prototype. But she doesn’t suspect the virtual world is close enough to touch — or that she’ll be battling for her life against the Dark Queen of the faeries.

Turns real…

Tam Linn is the perfect hero — in-game. Too bad the rest of his life is seriously flawed. The last thing he needs is rich-girl Jennet prying into his secrets, insisting he’s the only one who can help her.

Winning is everything…

Together, Jennet and Tam enter the Dark Realm of Feyland, only to discover that the entire human world is in danger. Pushed to the limit of their abilities, they must defeat the Dark Queen… before it’s too late.

I love gaming, and mythology has always interested me. And when a book combines the two, it certainly interests me. A Dark Realm is the first book in the Feyland trilogy by Anthea Sharp. I got in two different bundles and I finally decided to give it a go.

(I read the version in the Spark book bundle. I’ll be reviewing the other five books as well.)

The first chapter didn’t appeal to me at all. I’m a gamer, so I’m critical when it comes to game ‘lingo’ used in other media. That first chapter felt wrong somehow, but it was just the first chapter. I knew I couldn’t judge it on just the first chapter and I didn’t regret it.

The writing does get better towards the end of the book. By the end, I felt there was a certain flow which wasn’t there at the beginning. Maybe because the story wasn’t familiar or the setting was hard to get into. Some things didn’t make as much sense to me at first, but by sending Tam to Jennet’s house, things became clearer. I’m curious to see if the other books in the Feyland series also show progress in writing quality.

A Dark Realm tells the story of Jennet and Tam as they go on a quest to defeat the Dark Queen of the fae realm. This book has two plot lines: one where Jennet needs to save that part of herself, and Tam struggling to keep his family together. It’s a pretty clear path to the end and predictable. And that’s okay.

I did like the take on the fae mythology with VR. I do like it two concepts are mashed together and it works. The combination of the dark realm of the faerie queen within the VR world is one I haven’t read before.

I think A Dark Realm will mostly appeal the younger YA-readers who are looking for a straightforward story. (Not the people above twenty. I know you read YA. I see you. I’m one of them as well.) That doesn’t mean that others won’t enjoy it. It’s entertaining and if the description sounds interesting to you, you won’t regret it.

I give A Dark Realm three stars, mostly because it’s an easy read, with a simple story and writing that’s not as strong as other stories in the same bundle.

Check out my review of the other stories in the Spark bundle as well:
Starstruck by Brenda Hiatt

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