The Dandelion Clock by Sarah Key

Reviewed by: Robyn

The Book
Helene has wandered the streets of Cape Town for 15 years in mute silence with her dog, following her release from a state mental facility. When a fellow hobo is shot dead in an obvious case of mistaken identity, she falls back to the outskirts of town relying on the snippets of memory of former, happier years. Petra has always called her Titania and when her hobo friend vanishes and the reports of murders are released to the public, she knows that her silent friend is in danger and embarks on a desperate search to find her before it is too late.

My Thoughts
I liked
1. There’s a very eclectic cast of characters throughout the book, and while there are a number of them who I would consider to be more ‘filler’ characters, there are the three main ladies and our two evil doers who really steal the show. Each of them have very different personalities, and I find I enjoyed the dialogue which takes place between individuals during various stages of the book. It’s realistic and flows smoothly.
2. Plot twists are plentiful and as you think you’ve overcome the shock of one, Key immediately starts building up for the next. I enjoy this. I love a book which leaves me guessing and wondering at the end of each chapter. And when you finally get handed that final connecting piece of information that fits everything together…. Ah bliss! I had an inkling that I knew who was connected how, but damn did it still send me heart aflutter!?
3. The baddies are spine-chillingly scary, for me the best part of this book is there is no focus on one sole baddie, but the inclusion of others. There’s this unending potential for horror which left me scared to continue but desperate to know what happens. The Devious Creation freaked me out completely. Not only is he evil living in human form but it soon becomes evident that he is far from mentally stable. The worst part is I kinda felt bad for him as well, there was a sympathy that I couldn’t shake; I mean this is the exact reason for that nature vs nurture debate that often appears when looking into the lives of serial killers.
4. There’s a fair number of touchy subjects which I’ve found often leads to lengthy discussions in groups of people. Sanity vs insanity, body image issues, parental relationships… there’s a bunch there fresh for the picking which left me thinking of my own opinions on each subject.
5. If you’ve read this book, you can officially say you’ll cope at speaking “South African”, I thoroughly enjoyed the inclusion of local lingo and some very ‘Saffa-esque’ terms

I disliked
I’m undecided about
Reviewers Note: This book doesn’t have things I disliked; it’s more things which I don’t think I quite understood correctly. I feel this is a book I will certainly revisit once I’ve read the rest of the series as I find often times things make more sense then

1. I feel more could have been done by way of developing the Sisters of Light concept. I was expecting three heroines facing adversity and overcoming bad guys throughout, yet it seems that this was more the book for the coming together of our heroines, sort of a foundation demonstrating their abilities and how they could work together.
2. Creatures and Astrology.
Now, I thoroughly enjoy supernatural and astrological… stuff. So it’s not their inclusion which niggles at me, but rather the fact that I feel more could have been given of them to the book. I kind of feel like I may have ‘lost the plot’ so to speak somewhere, because while there’s a summary of each Sister’s astrological information, and reference to characteristics expected of certain signs, I felt lost about why there was this information to begin with?
And as for the creatures… I still don’t quite understand where or how they came about. First they’re there, then they’re not, then there’s a new one and it too vanishes as quickly as it appears. I assumed it was part of the instability of Helene and The Devious Creation, but later discovered that this wasn’t so. So now, who summons these things!!!? Are they real or not!? On second thought…. I don’t want to know. I need my sleep at night,

Conclusion
Sarah Key has this sensational ability to describe the characters, setting and situations which left me feeling as though I were one with the characters, to be able to gain an idea of how mountains looked, or how characters appear and to see it in my mind is something I truly admire in an author and she certainly nails it for me. I love it when there’s a fair balance of description, back line story and dialogue. While the initial few chapters were a bit more difficult to follow, purely due to the introduction of that eclectic cast of characters, I found myself drawn into the story with each new chapter and as I neared the end, I was met with a sort of dread for finishing it. There doesn’t seem to be anything too taboo, scary or dreadful that Sarah Key’s will shy away from using in her work so I am really looking forward to reading Book 2 The Butterfly Wind and seeing what else she has in store for us.

 Review Rating: 4/5

More Information:

Published By: Rebel ePublishers (November 3, 2015)

Published Date: 2015

Genre:  Thrillers & Suspense

 You can purchase The Dandelion Clock from Amazon and remember to check out Sarah on Goodreads

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