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Reviewed by Pikasho Deka for Readers' Favorite
Fans of fantasy novels are in for a treat as Alicia J. Novo's young adult fantasy series The Zweeshen Chronicles starts off on a high note with Unwritten. Beatrix Alba is a sixteen-year-old teenager who spends her otherwise prosaic life surrounding herself with her beloved books. As she mourns her recently passed grandfather, Beatrix senses a rise in her Furie, dormant magical powers that she struggles to control. While rummaging through her grandfather's stuff, she discovers a riddle left to her by her mother. Beatrix promptly follows her mother's footsteps to the realm of Zweeshen where stories give birth to worlds and Taemlimns, sentient inhabitants created by artisans. But not everything is as it seems as Beatrix slowly realizes that the land of Eisid Naraid may not represent what she previously thought it did.
Wholly original and wondrously imaginative, Unwritten is one of those rare books that, while perplexing at times, fill you with a sense of wonder and awe that everyone craves from books. I found Alicia J. Novo's worldbuilding phenomenal as Zweeshen seemed unlike any fantasy world I've ever come across in fantasy. It felt unique, authentic, and extremely well-crafted. The plot moves at a steady pace with plenty of twists and turns to keep you hooked. The characters felt relatable and likable, with Beatrix, Emma, and William being my personal favorites. I think Unwritten is a fantastic opening novel for a series. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I would highly recommend it to fantasy lovers.