For almost-16 year-old Anne Devans, the annual Renaissance
Faire means three things—her dad spending weeks in the smithy, her bipolar mom doing some manic costume making, and another ruined birthday for her and her twin sister, Mary.
This year, Anne wants things to be different, and she’s going to do things her way.
On the eve of the Faire, Anne (along with a reluctant Mary) conjures up a spell that will make their 16th birthday party a whirlwind event.Little do they know that it’s a literal request.
After the mini tornado in their room subsides, the girls realize they’ve invoked the power of the Gemini Twins, Castor and Pollux. That’s the good news. The bad news is they also caught the attention of a sorceress named Zeena who has been collecting children born under each Zodiac Sign to enhance her power. Once she captures Anne and Mary, Gemini twins, the entire Zodiac—and the world—will be hers.
Anne leads the fight against Zeena, but her one-sided decisions could throw them into a world so far from home, even the Renaissance Faire would seem like a brilliant vacation. Between managing their new Zodiac powers, dodging their manic mother and trying to stop Zeena, they’ll get a 16th birthday they’ll never forget.
The Zodiac Collector in short – doesn’t live up to expectations. The concept was really good – star-sign based magic, which I have never come across. Having a passing interest in the Zodiac, I thought this would be a magical read. It started off well – Anne is a little rebellious and cute teen but as I went on reading, I found myself getting distracted. It was the writing – it gets lost in details, especially in excessive use of metaphors and similes by a 16 yr old girl whose perspective it is written from. The voice just didn’t match the character!
The storyline starts off well and then goes downhill. I was somewhere at 3 stars by the middle and by the time I came to the end, I was too frustrated to even write this review (which is why it is a day late). Anne keeps creating trouble, Mary is inconsistent as a character, Will is a cardboard cutout for a best friend, Evan is extra space, and the villain, Zeena is hopeless. I was so done by the end of the book that I would have thrown it across the room if it wasn’t an ecopy (and that I love my ereader too much). Even her mother’s condition and the dysfunctional family situation didn’t add some meaning to the plot – it seemed like they lived in a foster home, that’s all. The whole reason for which Anne does it is so flimsy that you can’t even empathize with her. And a book in which you can’t like a single character is truly tragic.
Received an ARC from Spencer Hill Press via Netgalley. This does not affect my opinion or review in any way