ARC REVIEW: Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

Release Date: April 28, 2014
Publisher: Harper Teen
Format: Print ARC, 308 pages
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Sci-Fi
Pre-order Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

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Neil Gaiman’s Stardust meets John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars in this fantasy about a girl caught between two worlds... two races…and two destinies. 
Aza Ray is drowning in thin air. 
Since she was a baby, Aza has suffered from a mysterious lung disease that makes it ever harder for her to breathe, to speak—to live.  
So when Aza catches a glimpse of a ship in the sky, her family chalks it up to a cruel side effect of her medication. But Aza doesn't think this is a hallucination. She can hear someone on the ship calling her name. 
Only her best friend, Jason, listens. Jason, who’s always been there. Jason, for whom she might have more-than-friendly feelings. But before Aza can consider that thrilling idea, something goes terribly wrong. Aza is lost to our world—and found, by another. Magonia.  
Above the clouds, in a land of trading ships, Aza is not the weak and dying thing she was. In Magonia, she can breathe for the first time. Better, she has immense power—and as
she navigates her new life, she discovers that war is coming. Magonia and Earth are on the cusp of a reckoning. And in Aza’s hands lies the fate of the whole of humanity—including the boy who loves her. Where do her loyalties lie?

*I received an advance reading copy from the publisher in an exchange for an honest review.*

      My mind is still trying to process all my feelings. In all honesty, I didn't really enjoy it. It was really tough to get into it, especially in the beginning. And there were so many times that I was confused!

   The main character Aza has a lung disease that's named after her because only she has it. She can't breath! And no one expected her to live past sixteen. Then she starts hearing someone call out her name and she sees a sailing ship in the sky. But of course her family pass it off as a hallucination due to her medications. The only one that believes her is her best friend, Jason. They start searching the web for possible reasons as to what she has been seeing and hearing. Then one day, Aza falls gravely ill and she wakes up in the land called Magonia and finds out that she's perfectly healthy and breathing!

   I think my biggest problem was the beginning because, it felt like it was so long and too much info. being thrown in that was unnecessary. It did get better and so I'm was really glad. But I felt like the middle was dragging. Not as bad as the beginning. But the story wasn't really progressing. The falling action was more fascinating in my opinion. I heard others say that they did enjoy it once they got past the beginning. So you just have to give it time.

   Sadly, I didn't connect with any of the characters. I thought Aza was coming across as annoying and whiny. Though I did see some character development at the end with her.

   I found the writing at the start a little rushed and I didn't like the writing style. As well as the shifting points of views to Jason. While there wasn't that many as Aza had most of the book, I still didn't enjoy it. And I found the chemistry between Aza and Jason lacking.

  The ending was left open handed to a possible sequel. But I think it was wrapped up smoothly because things were starting to make more sense after being confused a lot.

   Overall, Magonia was not one of my most favorite books out there. But I think people who loved The Girl At Midnight would really enjoy this. It had some of the same qualities. And it had two twists that left me surprised. I also adore that cover!

   And don't let my opinions fool you because everyone has different tastes. What didn't worked for me might work for you!!

2 Stars: It Was Okay


  1. Awww, I'm sorry to see that you didn't enjoye this one and didn't form a connection with the characters, Karina! I completely understand if it just wasn't your thing, though. I loved this one and thought it was fantastical, but hey, that's the beauty of opinions! Hope your next read is better :)

    Faye at The Social Potato

  2. Yeah and I was worried I wasn't going to like it because I saw some people DNF it or give it a low rating before I read it.


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