Title: Heart of Oz (Oz: Origins of Darkness Book 1)
Published: 14 Feb 2019
Where I Got It: My shelf (Netgalley)
Everyone knows the land of Oz- A bright happy place filled with color, munchkins, quadlings and other beings under the security of the Emerald City and the Wizard. But suppose there is no Emerald City and no Wizard to safeguard Oz. Suppose we went back to the very beginning, when the first guardian of Oz, Elvira, a kind-hearted fae is exposed to what darkness really is when Elvira's best friend Genevieve is lured by the dark.
Just disappearing off into the night leaving Genevieve’s mother Ceris along with her two brothers, Aldante and Altair going spare as she moves into the most dangerous terrain, Starlet Boding. Known for shaping everyday folk into witches, warlocks as well as a prime breeding ground for demons. Genevieve is on shaky ground but not a soul back in her home village Golly Vale dares to find her.
Soon Genevieve meets Torigo, a snake who knows the dark world better than most. Having tutored many students in their shameful path. Torigo sees Genevieve's potential and can't wait to see her grow into a fine sorceress. Only Genevieve discovers Elvira has betrayed her and is furious. She makes her presence known in Golly Vale, only to find herself forbidden from the land. Feeling hurt, lost and alone she leaves.
Then tragedy strikes in Genevieve's heart. She's seeing red. Nobody in Oz is safe. And with chaos about to descend onto the peaceful land, will Genevieve destroy everyone she loves and herself?
This caught my eye right away. The title. The cover. Plus I love origin tales and I love Oz. What could go wrong?
The story follows Genevieve and Elvira before the Oz as we know it is created. Things happen and Genevieve is lured to the dark side and Oz will never be the same. No one is safe.
This was a fun take on the origin story of Oz. Unique for sure and I was intrigued by how everything was changed when one girl went bad. Always sad, but you can't fully blame them for going to the dark side. And I get why Elvira did what she did. It is all a mess. I feel bad for everyone.
The story was a quick read so that is a bonus. If you need something quick and easy this is a good one. I was able to get it done after 2 sittings (darn sleep getting in the way). But I do wish it was a touch longer. It left with a cliffhanger and I am curious to see what happens next, but I do feel like we could've had more.
I did have an issue connecting with our characters. Sure I did feel bad for them and understand WHY they did the things they did, but I didn't connect. I felt very disconnected with them and the story. I still enjoyed the journey. But I won't be broken-hearted if I can't get my hands on book 2. Not sure if it was a me thing or not. I do want to read for curiosity-sake, but we shall see.
This has a lot of promise for an epic book 2. A very unique story and interesting characters.
And that cover! Love it! So cheesy but beautiful at the same time. How is that possible?
Overall, I did enjoy the journey and it was a quick read. I wish I didn't feel so disconnected though. Not sure what the issue is because I am curious about what will happen next, but like I said...won't have my heart-broken if I can't get my hands on the next one. This has a lot of potential so we shall see what is next. I'll stamp this with 3 stars. More like 2.5, but I rounded. The cover is cute. I WANT A UNICORN!