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Auralia's Colors by Jeffrey Overstreet

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Auralia's Colors
by Jeffrey Overstreet

Reviewed by Lori Fox

"Reading Auralia's Colors is like being dropped into a new world. Every step is an adventure, and nothing leads to what you expect."

The four houses of the Expanse are divided. To the far south, House Jenta is home to philosophers. To the west, House Bel Amica has begun worshiping moon spirits, and a thriving trade economy has sprung up. To the near south, House Cent Regus has become corrupted by greed, its inhabitants monsters who hunt those of the other houses. And to the east, House Abascar has accepted a new kind of greed.

In the midst of Abascar's Winter, an infant girl is found in the footprint of a monster along the shore of Deep Lake—far from the House walls. Rescued by the Gatherers, outcasts and criminals, Auralia grows and nurtures them in return. But her Gift is dangerous as well as wonderful. While there are some who wish to harbor and protect Auralia, others want her dead, or to bend her to their rules.

Auralia's Colors by Jeffrey Overstreet is an amazing tale of magic, while retaining a hint of allegory. I've never seen magic based in color before, and I don't believe it exists any where else. His skillful use of a new kind of magic would be enough to endear his writing to me forever, but add in a thickly layered plot, realistic and varied characters, and rich prose, and I just can't stop talking about this book.

The world of Auralia's Colors is so vividly imagined and written that it's difficult to believe that this is only the first book of the series. Usually imagery like this has been built up out of several books. The descriptions are full, but never tedious, and the allegory is so tightly woven in that you may not even notice that it's there if you're not looking for it.

Reading Auralia's Colors is like being dropped into a new world. Every step is an adventure, and nothing leads to what you expect. Kathy Tyers referred to this book as a tapestry, and that's exactly what it is. When viewed as a whole, you have an exciting story, beautiful to look at, something to be enjoyed time and again. But when you look at each piece alone, you see the skill that was used. How this piece here was woven just so, and why it had to be so. Each section becomes a work of art on its own merit, without ever detracting from the whole.

Fans of fantasy will find Auralia's Colors a refreshing look at what they love, and others will find an enchanting tale with a most unexpected ending.

Lori Fox is a freelance writer who is working on her first novel as well as writing reviews for TitleTrakk.com. In addition to writing, she enjoys reading, making jewelry, and taking as many trips to Walt Disney World as possible with her wonderful husband Kyle. Visit her online at her website.