One Night With The Fae
by Claire Farrell
Reading level: YA
When Cara stumbles into a strange party in the park on the darkest night of the year, she unwittingly finds herself in the midst of a battle between a number of faery factions, each of whom wants to use Cara for their own purposes.
Will she find any allies amongst the warring fae? Will she manage to escape? Or will the night end in bloodshed with Cara as a sacrificial victim?
Oh, my goodness. I'd never read any books published by Smashwords before, so I wasn't that familiar with their publishing model. Now I know. It's basically just a self-publishing medium... and I have yet to be impressed with a self-published book.
The ridiculousness of this annoying (but mercifully short) book begins when Cara -- presumably a young woman, since she's out drinking with her friends -- decides to check out some odd lights in the park that only she seems to be able to see. This, despite Cara telling us that "the park was usually full of life at this time of night between drug dealers and prostitutes..." Really? You're slightly drunk, you know the park is usually full of drug dealers and hookers, and you decide to quietly abandon your friends and sneak over there by yourself? Shortly thereafter, she eats and drinks at the faery banquet of her own volition, despite mentioning that she remembered stories about faeries, and even obediently chomps into a magic apple given to her by a banshee. SNS, anyone?
Things just get worse from there. I don't mind multiple narrators, but in this book we spend most of the time in the heads of some very unappealing characters. Everybody is scheming and bloodthirsty... but not very bright. After Cara's initial chapter, we barely see her; the rest of the story is about a bunch of really immature faery morons decapitating each other and jockeying for position. Very little time was taken to actually develop any of the characters, so I couldn't really care about any of them.
The writing itself is awful. There are comma splices throughout the text, interspersed with (strangely) the correct use of semicolons. I'll chalk that up to lazy editing. But the writing style itself is weak and the dialog rather stilted. The following passage exemplifies the writing you'll find in One Night With The Fae:
The girl sat on the bed, her face blank.
"I'm going to die."
"You won't. Look at me, what's your name?"
"Good name. I am Drake and I don't want to die tonight so I'm going to make sure we both get out of here."
"Why are you really helping me?"
"I...don't really know."
"Can I touch your wings?"
He sighed. "Go on then."
"They're soft, softer than I expected."
Drake enjoyed the light touch of her fingers on his wings and sighed again. He tried to cover his obvious pleasure by speaking harshly to her.
"Your fringe is too long. You should cut it."
Because nothing shows disinterest in a girl more than insulting her hair while being hunted by bloodthirsty fae!
All in all, there's really nothing I can recommend about this book. The awful writing set my teeth on edge and the characters were so one-dimensional that don't think I would have cared even if they'd all been decapitated. It read more like a high-school creative writing assignment than a professional piece of writing. Skip this one... unless you're really bored, are feeling masochistic, and don't mind parting with one of your hard-earned dollars.
Overall: 1.29 out of 5