Release Date: April 17, 2018
***This book was given to me for an honest review, but all my thoughts and opinions are my own***
It took me forever to get to this book and not because of what you think, because you know, life gets in the way of reading sometimes. I was suppose to read this back in March, but March and April were not good months for me. So I definitely took it upon myself to read this book for May, and I think forcing myself to read this book made me draw back from the reading experience. I’m not entirely sure what about the book that took me forever to get into it, but I just could immerse myself in the world or the characters.
I usually ask for ARC’s that draw my attention and one that I know I would enjoy, that’s why I seldom ask for ARC’s, because I don’t really enjoy giving bad reviews. If I know that a certain book is not up my alley, I really don’t bother asking for a copy. I think it’s unfair for myself and the author to ask for a book I know I will never pick up. So when The City of Lost Fortunes came my way, I grabbed the chance to get an ARC. Not only is it set in New Orleans, a location I haven’t read from, but it also incorporates the magical realm of voodoo culture and the fantastical aspect of the city. Unfortunately, I have to say it, but this book was not for me. I can’t really pin point the exact reason this book didn’t work for me, but its the small little details that added up as the book progressed.
I really enjoyed the setting of the book. I haven’t really picked up a novel set in New Orleans and I think it was a fantastic idea for Camp to include his hometown in his novel. Me not being familiar with anything New Orleans, it was a bit difficult for me to picture where the book is set. I would have enjoyed a more in depth description of the world of our protagonists. It would also help if there were a bit more fantasy elements within his New Orleans world. In many of the other urban fantasy novels I’ve encountered there has always been a ‘veil’ around the human world that the regular people are made to see, compared to the reality of it in the magical world. I know that Camp was trying to be original and depict a more realistic fantasy world, but I did miss that.
I do applaud Camp on his use of different fantastical creatures/characters. It’s amazing how many he tried to incorporate within this book and there really isn’t any black and white characters. Each have their own agenda and all are willing to play dirty for the ultimate goal. I would have enjoyed more in depth coverage on voodoo magic, but maybe I’ll look elsewhere to get my fix. I must admit though, I wasn’t really a fan of any of the characters, no one really jumped up to me to be a favorite. Everyone is so morally grey, that it’s really difficult to see who the good guys are and who the bad guys are. Then again in Fantasy novels, you are never 100% certain. I’m actually surprised that I’m not that fixated on the protagonists. He’s really the type of character that I’m usually fond of, but in this book, I found him to be a little bit flat, and repetitive. I think that’s one of my major concern on this book. Our main character, Jude, would venture off on his own, but then when he meets up with someone, he would repeat all his adventures, which is basically us readers, reading his actions twice. Which got a bit frustrating after a few chapters. For me, Jude was a bit bland, he was neither a hero or antagonist, so he’s just there, solving a mystery.
The mystery is really what got me through the end, I really wanted to know what happened, how it happened and why. So I had to finish the book. I would have wished it went a little bit faster and I would have enjoyed the book more if the pace of the events when a bit faster. Although I do commend Camp on his use of various characters from all over the world, I would have wished he didn’t use every folk story he knows of in every chapters. I understand all that research needed to be used, but I hope on the next book he tones it down a bit. They’re all interesting facts, but I think really unnecessary for the story line.
That being said, I hope Camp doesn’t tear my review into pieces. I understand why some people would enjoy this book, but this one wasn’t really for me.