Second in the Dusk Gate Chronicles, Roots of Insight takes teenager Quinn back through a mysterious gateway from modern life into the world of Eirentheos, where time moves faster but return is always bound to the setting of the sun. Soon she’s trying to work out how to disappear for a weekend without anyone noticing—wouldn’t every teenager long to do that sometime? But Quinn’s disappearances are filled with adventure and danger, and a secret that gradually weaves its way into the tale, waiting for further books to reveal the whole truth. Readers might want to start with book one, where Quinn first encounters the royal family who now seem almost as close as her own mother and siblings. This clever teen now finds her grades slipping as she struggles through a tangle of teen emotions, drawn to William, to Thomas, to the boy next door, and wondering what true love feels like. In the midst of it all, she struggles to find her place in two different worlds, and to rescue a friend who disappears into the dangers of enemy territory. Keeping secrets, remaining loyal, and giving honest trust are persistent themes in this novel. Sweet family relationships keep the story moving forward. A slight excess of panic reminds readers the characters are still very young. And a touch of politics keeps more things safely hidden until volume three (or later I suppose). I enjoyed the story, though some passages seemed a little repetitive. I enjoyed the characters and their relationships too, though the teens, like real teens I suppose, seem rather disturbingly eager to bend rules and adventure alone. Most of all, these worlds are fun, their interactions nicely revealed, and the touch mystery has a way of growing on you. This is a fairly slow read, but a fun teen fantasy and nicely complete, for all that it's only volume two.
Disclosure: I was given a free ecopy when I invited the author to my blog.
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