Title: Akarnae (The Medoran Chronicles #1)
Author: Lynette Noni
Number of Pages: 397
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Publication Date: February 1, 2015
I was provided a copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
Synopsis: With just one step, sixteen-year-old Alexandra Jennings’s world changes–literally.
Dreading her first day at a new school, Alex is stunned when she walks through a doorway and finds herself stranded in Medora, a fantasy world full of impossibilities. Desperate to return home, she learns that only a man named Professor Marselle can help her… but he’s missing.
While waiting for him to reappear, Alex attends Akarnae Academy, Medora’s boarding school for teenagers with extraordinary gifts. She soon starts to enjoy her bizarre new world and the friends who embrace her as one of their own, but strange things are happening at Akarnae, and Alex can’t ignore her fear that something unexpected… something sinister… is looming.
An unwilling pawn in a deadly game, Alex’s shoulders bear the crushing weight of an entire race’s survival. Only she can save the Medorans, but what if doing so prevents her from ever returning home?
Will Alex risk her entire world–and maybe even her life–to save Medora?
Holy cow. Where do I begin?
I’m going to start off by saying that this book made me so nostalgic, I couldn’t handle it. Akarnae manages to have the same whimsical, magical feel that Harry Potter has. As a HUGE Harry Potter fan, I don’t say that lightly. I mean, this book is literally magical. The world is so well built. I definitely want to go on a vacation to Medora. Everything from the school to the town was so vivid in my mind. I felt like I was strolling down the street with Alex, Bear, and Jordan, or even sitting there with Alex when she was receiving treatment from Fletcher. The world building was THAT good.
The characters were great. I wish I had friends like Jordan and Bear. They were hilarious, and fiercely loyal. I loved them both, although I have to say that I think I have a soft spot for Jordan. Alex was sassy, smart, and brave. She went through so much in this book, and never backed down, even if she could. D.C. was another one of my favorites. I wasn’t too sure at first, but she definitely grew on me. Shoot, I even loved Karter and Finn, sadistic as they may be. Combat and PE are probably the only two parts of Akarnae Academy that I don’t want much to do with…
One of the biggest things that struck me was the fact that there was no romance. None. Zilch. Zero. That’s right, you heard me. There’s a female character with two male best friends, and there is no dating, no kissing, nothing. THANK YOU LYNETTE. I normally feel like books without romance are lacking a certain element, but I was totally satisfied by the strong and genuine friendships throughout. Now, I’m not saying that I’d be opposed to a little romance down the road… *cough*Jalex?*cough*
All in all, Akarnae was one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. The magical atmosphere just sucks you in, and won’t let you go until Alex is done with her adventures for a while. The world is perfectly crafted, and the characters are the kind of people that you would want as your best friends. What’s not to love? Five out of five stars!