Friday, February 21, 2014

If I Speak True {by Jessica L. Brooks}

Title: If I Speak True
Author: Jessica L. Brooks
Series: Flora #1
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Dahlia Kennedy's sixteenth birthday marks a decade of mysterious dahlias arriving and strange, lonely dreams of being in a forest. The only difference this birthday, however, is that for the first time, someone is there with her. And he's practically from a whole other era.
The more often Dahlia visits Rowan in his land of Ambrosia, the stronger their connection grows. But... is Ambrosia real? Is he real? What is going on between the two of them, exactly, and why does he insist that she keep it to herself?
As secrets usually go, however, it's only a matter of time before everything comes out. And when Dahlia finds out the truth of who Rowan is, who she is, and how he really feels -- it’s beyond anything she could have ever imagined.

Can I start by talking about the cover? I don't know what it is, but I just really love it. 

Anyways... If I Speak True was a unique, creative, and fun story. Dahlia is turning sixteen when the story opens. And like every year for the past ten years, a dahlia appears. She doesn't know from whom, she doesn't know why. But every year, it is there. That night, like most other nights, she dreams of a different world. A world she thought was just her overactive imagination...until Rowan appears. Now, Ambrosia is so much more than Dahlia ever thought. 

Since I liked this book, let's start out by getting the things I didn't like out of the way. First, the freaking out. I realize that all that's going on is pretty weird. I know that she said she's lived with her mother's paranoia for so long, it's affected her too. But there was a lot that seemed unnecessary and childish. 

Also, her mother. Some of it was explained by her going crazy after their father died, but some of it I just didn't understand. And her sisters. Did they like her? Not like her? Were they jerks? Not jerks? I was really confused as to the whole family dynamic here. 

Next, Dahlia. No, not her in general. But there were times when she was really immature and...annoying. I realize she's a sixteen-year old girl, but sometimes she would just get on my nerves. The whole getting-mad-at-Rowan-and-stomping-away act got old real fast. 

And the pacing could have been done better. The story lags a lot in the middle, only to pile information on at the end. I think it definitely could have picked up, explained more in the middle instead of what seemed like nothing happening.

But other than that, this was actually a very good story. The world-building in Ambrosia was done very well. The characters were well-portrayed, especially Rowan and the Queen. The banter between Dahlia and her Shaver friends was fun and humorous. I liked the relationships between the characters, both in Shaver and in Ambrosia. The characters were believable, because you could relate to them. (But can we get more Briscoe in the next book?)

Although it does have some flaws, If I Speak True was a very enjoyable read, one that I would definitely recommend.

Psst- check out Jessica's dream cast for the Ambrosia side characters!

I received an eARC from the author in exchange for my honest review. This does not affect my opinion in any way.

This review can also be found on   Rachel Marie's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

Jessica L. Brooks

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