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Friday, July 15, 2016

DNF Discussion for The Ballad of Allyn-a-Dale by Danielle E. Shipley

To start off today's post I have to clarify this isn't a moan about what I didn't like about this book. This book does have things about it that I enjoy but, at the moment, I have decided to put the books aside and class it as a DNF (did not finish). I decided to do a discussion about this as I find it hard to DNF books (something I am trying to 'allow' myself to do) so I feel as though I need to justify (to myself) why I have stopped reading it. So first off here is what this book is about:

Title: The Ballad of Allyn-a-Dale
Author: Danielle E.Shipley
Publication: July 6th 2016 by Ever On Word
ISBN13: 9780989184687
Buy From: Amazon (UK) || Amazon (US)
(N.B. I was sent an e-copy of this book by the author, this has not effected my thoughts on the books in any way.)

Synopsis From Goodreads

Welcome to Avalon, a Renaissance Faire where heroes of legend never die. Where the Robin Hood walking the streets is truly the noble outlaw himself. Where the knightly and wizardly players of King Arthur’s court are in fact who they profess to be. Where the sense of enchantment in the air is not mere feeling, but the Fey magic of a paradise hidden in plain sight.

Enter Allyn-a-Dale. The grief of his father’s death still fresh and the doom of his own world looming, swirling realities leave the young minstrel marooned in an immortal Sherwood Forest, where he is recruited as a member of Robin Hood’s infamous outlaw band. But Allyn’s new life may reach its end before it’s scarcely begun. Their existence under threat, the Merry Men are called upon to embark on a journey to the dangerous world Outside – ours – on a quest which must be achieved without delay, or eternity in Avalon will not amount to very long at all.
My Thoughts on the First 52% of The Ballad of Allyn-a-Dale
My favourite aspect of this book was the setting (Avalon), from the very first page we get to see this fantastical setting with giants and bows and arrows. It soon becomes clear that this isn't a 'normal' fantasy world as there is this strange mix of knights of the round table, merry men and normal people with modern gadgets. This confused me for quite a while but once I had worked out what was happening it is quite a cool set up and reminded me in some ways of the world created by Jennifer Estep in her Black Blade series.

I was sad when the we change points of views and when to a different world to follow Allyn-a-dale's journey, this world is just a bit ... strange to honest and it also felt a bit flat. However, thankfully we are soon returned to Avalon.

I have always been a fan of Robin Hood and was the reason I picked this book up, I was intrigued to see how he was portrayed and how he would interact with the Camelot characters. Once I had actually started to read it wasn't Robin's character that I was fascinated by Will's, I loved his energy and enthusiasm, and his fascination with the modern  world.

Why I am DNF-ing  

Firstly, I don't feel 'connected' to the main character, he is an alright guy, but he doesn't have any unique personality features, other than he is a musician who misses his father I can't really describe him.

 I am not finding the plot that exciting. Originally I was reading to find out more about Avalon but I now know why Sherwood is next to Camelot. Once that mystery is solved the focus switched to more of a quest-like adventure, which has resulted in the loss of some of my favourite elements of the book.

Discussion (For those who have read The Ballad of Allyn-a-dale)

1) What was your favourite element of this book (e.g setting, characters etc.)?

2) Is there anything you wished was different?

3) Would you recommend me trying to continue with this book?