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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
Elsewhen is a humorous fantasy by Kathy Burford. Kayla meets a strange woman who whisks her away to another world. A place in dire need of saving and she's been recruited into the fight. Kayla's world, called When, is becoming dangerously close to colliding into Elsewhen. Sister rulers, Morath and Merope, run Elsewhen with the third sister mysteriously absent, sending Kayla back and forth as she works to save the world. She turns to her eccentric new friends for help and seeks out the whereabouts of the mysterious JL while also finding a way to keep a powerful stone safe.
Kayla is immediately drawn into another world and brought into the role of hero. She has to learn to be this world's hero while also learning the rules of this world and learning her place within it. She also meets a range of eccentric characters such as Ned, Phineas, Jem, and Rowena. Each plays a key role in saving the world while also providing humor and complications. Kathy Burford has quick banter and weaves in plenty of lighthearted moments throughout the story, along with plenty of action-packed moments. Fairy tale jokes are woven throughout. This includes a humorous reference to the famed Rumpelstiltskin with a scene that finds Kayla trying to guess the name of Brynxit and one of her guesses is Rumpelstiltskin. Elsewhen includes the use of the witch Baba Yaga who is a delightful character that finds a perfect fit into the story.
Lovers of fairy tales will savor every reference and find the humor absolutely delightful. Elsewhen is a world full of magic which first astonishes Kayla but she quickly finds her place with it and transitions into the hero that is needed. A light dose of mystery can be found throughout with most revolving around JL and how he fits into everything. Burford weaves a fairy tale with endearing characters, a charming plot, plenty of magic and dragons, and a dangerous battle to keep two worlds apart.