I absolutely love movies, books, tv shows, etc., with complicated, time-bending plots. However, I do think I understand now what my friends meant when they claimed LOST was too complex for them to watch. I actually found that show easy to follow, but I was also highly invested in the outcome. And I think that’s where my problem stemmed from with Weave a Circle Round by Kari Maaren.
THE 411: Freddy, her sister, Mel, and their half-brother, Roland, are seemingly normal pre/teens until they get some interesting neighbors. Enter Cuerva Lachance and Josiah aka Time Traveling Agents who are constantly in a trip through the ages searching for their third companion, lovingly referred to as, “Three.” Freddy eventually learns that their appearance next door can only mean one thing: either Mel, Roland, or herself, is Three.
I really loved the concept of this book. The description of “Madeleine L’Engle meets Stranger Things” is entirely accurate. I wouldn’t necessarily say the plot is slow, it definitely moves along, but up until the first time jump, I found myself constantly thinking, “Ok….so…why should I care, again?” Things really start to get interesting once Freddy and Josiah start traveling through time and Freddy meets all the different incarnations of Cuerva Lachance, Josiah, and the elusive Three. We’re transported all over the world, from prehistoric China to future England.
Plotwise this should have been something I loved, even without a swoon worthy couple to root for. I can’t quite put my finger on what it was that was missing for me, because it’s extremely well-written and imaginative. Weave a Circle Round is a great debut for Maaren. I just think when push came to shove, there wasn’t a character that I connected to and that made it hard to, ultimately, keep invested and care about the outcome. There will be people who will absolutely love this book, it just very unfortunately was not me.
PS, the cover is BEAUTIFUL and the title fits perfectly.
MY RATING: ✰✰✰1/2
RECOMMENDED FOR: lovers of magical realism and time travel, no romance
Thank you Tor Books for my copy. Weave a Circle Round is available now.