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Reviewed by Arya Fomonyuy for Readers' Favorite
Constant Guests by Patricia Nedelea is a complex story with multiple themes, and, as a debut novel, it is little short of a masterpiece. Isa’s story covers so many centuries, involving a tarot deck from 1389. It isn’t until the time of her real mother’s death that Isa finds out that the person she’d thought to be her mother isn’t her real mother. She doesn’t even know who her father is. When she discovers the truth about her parents, she sets out on a very dangerous journey to uncover her real identity, but little does she know that things have been kept hidden from her for a reason. She’s in for the most disturbing discovery of her life, if only she can live long enough to find out what it is.
Constant Guests combines different elements of storytelling to deliver a literary treat that readers will find irresistible, the kind of work that will appeal to lovers of fantasy, thriller, and mystery. Patricia Nedelea seems to have done her homework and her work features compelling historical elements, a bubbling imagination, and characters that are hard to let go. The reader is hooked from the opening lines of this interesting novel. The girl wakes up behind bars and has a hard time determining why she’s locked up. Her recollections of the previous night offer readers a powerful glimpse of her personality and set the tone for the entire story. The writing is polished and reads smoothly. I was most impressed by the powerful plot lines and the seamless integration of different historic moments into an absorbing story.