I finished reading two books written by authors I met at this year’s WIFYR conference. White Cat by Holly Black and Skin Hunger by Kathleen Duey. The stories were very different, yet the writing had similarities. They are both the first book in a series, and, I think, both ended abruptly.
White Cat is written in first person from a male perspective. Skin Hunger alternates POV from chapter to chapter, beginning with third person from a female perspective then going to first person from a male perspective.
Both books include magic that is or has been banned. Both have magic systems and worlds that are consistent and believable. White Cat is urban fiction based on a prohibition-type system. Skin Hunger is the wizard/apprentice system with a medieval feel. Both mention specific male anatomy at least once.
White Cat is described on the cover as “Dangerously, Darkly Gorgeous Fantasy.” Skin Hunger is described as “Darkly atmospheric fantasy” by Booklist.
Both books kept me turning pages until the end, but then left me feeling like they ended too soon. This is probably exactly what each author intended so that readers will feel compelled to read the rest of the series. But, I’m not sure I will go out of my way to do so. I don’t particularly like “dark” fantasy. (I prefer happy endings–or at least satisfying endings, i.e. the Harry Potter series and the Wizard Heir series.)
It was interesting to read these books after having heard their authors teach about the craft of writing and talk about their experiences as authors. I learned a lot from them. And, it affirmed that I like “what” and “how” Jane and I write togethter.