Review: Among the Beasts and Briars by Ashley Poston


3/5 Stars

This book disappointed me. The premise and the book cover drew me in – I was ready for a lush, romantic fairy tale to hold me spell-bound.

Unfortunately, it was not lush, and the romance was quite childish. The writing style is what really turned me off of this book. It was so simple. The sky is blue, the trees are green, the clouds pink.

I genuinely thought this book was catered to a younger audience, and then WABAM. F**ck made a random appearance, and it felt so out of place I was giggling.

I tend to gauge how much I like a book by the inspiration it gives me. I’m the type of writer who is fueled by excellent story-telling. When a book (or film) gets my heart pumping and my mind whirling, I suddenly have the urge to pump out 5,000 words of my own novel. I want to give people the same glorious rush that they have given me with their stories.

Saying that…this book didn’t do that for me. It was a simply written fairy tale that had me feeling meh the whole time.

The main character is your run-of-the-mill stupid character. Not heeding advice. Making the same mistakes over and over again. Something screamed over there? I’ll check it out! AH, I ALMOST DIED!!!! the next night something screamed over there! I HAVE TO CHECK IT OUT. Almost dies again.

The romance is quite immature, reminiscent of romance found in shows meant for children.

I’m not saying children’s literature is bad. Far from it. I actually love good children’s books. But they don’t feel like children’s books when you read them. Howl’s Moving Castle? The Golden Compass?

I really don’t want to come across mean. There IS heart beating faintly in this story. It just…fell flat. The writing was so simplistic, the romance boring, and the end!? It didn’t really…end? The action grew, and grew, and


Suddenly we’re six months later after the curse was broken????? We didn’t see anything happen????????????????????

Much confusion.

Honestly, this book reminded me of my years in creative writing school, where I was consistently reading works in progress. This book has potential, it just needs a solid rewrite. And a target audience. Are you aiming for children? Okay, let’s tone down a couple of the darker scenes and cut the ONE (!?) swear word. Are you aiming for 17 year olds? Well, let’s make this darker and more fleshed out and if you’re gonna add some expletives, let’s dot a few more in there! Aaaaand let’s use different descriptions for the primary colours, please.

Based on the author photo and the light-heartedness of her story, I get the feeling that the author is a complete sweetheart. I bet she can really write. Unfortunately…this book does not showcase it as well as I was hoping.

Author: Akairya

Fantasy author of The Fractured Soul. To buy a copy of the first book, Akairya, simply go to Abrianna's main website or search for it on Amazon! When Abrianna's not writing, she is reading or riding horses...or playing a video game that probably takes up way too much of her time.

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