Title: Enchanted Ever After
Author: Robin D. Owens
Length: 400 pages
Rating: 3.5 stars
Magic was just around the corner....
Kiri Palger knew the difference between reality-new house, hard work and not too many friends-and fantasy-the fun she had playing online games. So when the chance to work for the best gaming company in the world came up, giving her a chance to merge business with pleasure, how could she not apply?
Suddenly she has more friends, interesting neighbors and an intriguing love interest. But when the game begins to awaken something inside her, Kiri is shocked by the talents she never knew she had... and an evil she'd never imagined.
Her nice, safe life is imploding around her-and if she takes up the mantle of her powers, it will never be the same again.... - Goodreads
This is a difficult review to write due to the fact that I am coming in at the third book without the frame of reference that the first or second books in the series provide. The usage of VR as a vehicle for blending fantasy and reality is something that is becoming popular in YA. The use of it in an adult romance is quite refreshing.
The rules and hierarchy of the mer-based world are very interesting, really coming alive when applied to the character of Lathyr. His status as a half-blood in a world where purity and lineage mean everything and the alienation and low self worth that develop as a result are heartbreaking to watch.
Strangely enough however, it is these perceived inadequacies that serve as the glue that bonds Kiri and Lathyr together when her powers start to manifest and she starts to have similar feelings of insecurity and doubt about her place in this new world that she longs to call home.
This is a good read for the most part, although there is a rather choppy quality to the author's writing style that takes some getting used to.
This is not a stand-alone read. If you decide to delve into this read please read the first two books.